First video streaming platforms like YouTube, then social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and now messaging apps. Facebook, WhatsApp’s parent company, has announced that WhatsApp will be including advertisements in 2020.
Facebook revealed this incoming WhatsApp update at its annual Facebook Marketing Summit hosted in Rotterdam, Netherlands. Check out a preview of this new feature, tweeted out by one of the Summit’s attendees:
Judging from these previews, ads on WhatsApp will probably be similar to those shown through Instagram Stories or Snapchat. After all, these ads will be popping up in the “Status” section of WhatsApp. This section allows users to post images, videos, texts or animated GIFs, that disappear after 24 hours.
Thoughts On The Move
While it’s unfortunate that WhatsApp will not be spared from ads as well, the ads aren’t all that bad. The Status section of WhatsApp is a feature that’s, quite frankly, not used very often. Users tend to post stories on other social media platforms, the most popular amongst which being Instagram.
In fact, it raises the question of how effective these ads will be. After all, there’s no point in paying for ads if no one is going to be viewing them. Maybe if the cost of advertising is cheaper, or packaged with cross-platform advertising (on Facebook, for example), it would be worthwhile to use for marketing.
Who knows, though – perhaps Facebook will find other ways to incorporate adverts into WhatsApp. Imagine having to view ads while, say, scrolling through our media on WhatsApp!
If anything, we’re glad that WhatsApp will remain as a free to use service. Even after the recent WhatsApp hacking issue, it remains as one of the most commonly used messaging tools. It would be a shame if it became pay-to-use, or worse, subscription-based.