If you haven’t heard, Facebook announced that it’s working to integrate three major chat platforms — Messenger, Instagram and WhatsApp — in order to allow cross-communication for users.
This is a huge development.
Facebook acquired Instagram in 2012 and WhatsApp in 2014, making this power move possible.
The new infrastructure would keep the three applications distinct while simultaneously allowing users to chat with each other, regardless of their platform.
The project is under development and has at least another year until the infrastructures are integrated.
Today, here are eight things you should know about the Facebook Messenger, Instagram and WhatsApp Integration and what it means for users, marketers and businesses.
1. Users gain a windfall of convenience through the integration
When looking at all of the people who use these apps, Facebook realized that the process could be streamlined, making life more user-friendly.
After announcing the new messenger concept, the company told The New York Times that they are striving to “build the best messaging experiences we can; and people want messaging to be fast, simple, reliable and private.”
“We’re working on making more of our messaging products end-to-end encrypted and considering ways to make it easier to reach friends and family across networks,” said Facebook.
2. The integration’s a massive opportunity for businesses to reach a bigger and more diverse audience
Along with the three chat applications’ collective 2.6 billion users, there is another group that will reap the benefits from this app integration: businesses.
Think how much more effective it will be for businesses to reach out to customers on three diverse chat applications from one chat marketing platform.
With this new update, you will be able to reach a larger, worldwide demographic and spend more time connecting with both new and returning customers.
Soon, not only will you connect with the 16–24 year old demographic that dominate both Instagram and WhatsApp, but you’ll be able to reach the increasing number of 25 and older users that thrive on Facebook as well.
And there is no more need to worry about how to connect global markets, with WhatsApp’s largest user bases falling in Asia, South America and Europe.
3. Facebook expects major revenue from the integration
The integration opens up substantially more revenue through new business services like new space for advertising inventory for Facebook.
This is something the company needs, as they’ve voiced concern over saturated ad space in recent years.
Let’s not forget that ad revenue is critical to the company’s survival as well — in a previous quarter, they pulled in $6.2 billion in ad revenue alone.
Sources also hinted at the possibility of exclusive features that users can pay for.
By creating more space for innovation, Facebook brings in bigger profits and more business.
4. Chatbots are about to explode in marketing
Chat marketing is the biggest opportunity for marketers of the next few years.
Chat marketing automation checks off a number of the most user-centric, growth-critical trends in digital marketing, namely: artificial intelligence, automation, personalization and interactivity.
A conversational interface coupled with artificial intelligence crushes a business’s conversion obstacles and enables instant customer service.
Already love using chatbots to reach your customers on Facebook Messenger?
Get ready to turn on those same chatbot marketing funnels through WhatsApp and Instagram with little additional effort.
With this integration, businesses will be able to easily connect with customers around the world, across diverse populations, using a single chatbot building platform.
5. Businesses gain an effective alternative to email marketing’s declining engagement
This integration gives businesses a global channel for direct communication that’s more engaging and user-friendly than email marketing.
Benchmark reports show the average open rate of marketing emails is 20%.
The average click-through rate of those emails is a whimpy 2.43%.
Instead, businesses can enjoy 60% to 80% open rates and click rates between 4x to 10x greater than in email.
This new integration will give businesses a single platform for reaching customers more effectively than email marketing campaigns.
6. Facebook stands to rival WeChat through the integration
If looking at Facebook’s messaging app competition, there is one application that stands above the rest: WeChat.
This app is used across China as a multipurpose platform, something that hasn’t been seen elsewhere due to user fragmentation.
By integrating all three messaging apps though, Facebook will encroach on WeChat’s ubiquity in China and its 1.08 billion monthly active users.
7. Internal restructuring at Facebook is underway
It’s no secret that big changes lead to internal restructuring.
The founders of WhatsApp and Instagram left after Facebook began taking more control over what was previously their own business.
The New York Times also reported staff members citing this new project as reason for departure from the company.
8. Marketers who act fast with chat marketing will gain the most
It is not often in the tech world that huge changes such as this come along.
If you’re building a unicorn business, you’re looking for every advantage.
Dive into MobileMonkey ASAP to integrate chat into your marketing stack.
Odds are you’ll be the first in your market to take advantage of best-of-class engagement and response rates.