Strategies to Foster Customer Loyalty on WhatsApp During the Holiday Season

Strategies to Foster Customer Loyalty on WhatsApp During the Holiday Season

Strategies to Foster Customer Loyalty on WhatsApp During the Holiday Season

Unlock the potential of WhatsApp this holiday season with our comprehensive guide. Dive into proven strategies to boost customer loyalty, drive conversions, and maximize revenue through targeted messaging.

The holiday season offers a chance for businesses around the globe to finish the year strong, captivate audiences, and set the stage for future success. But as festive jingles play and fairy lights twinkle, businesses are also filling the crowded marketplace with noise.

Today, businesses can’t just be merchants; they need to be confidantes, advisors, and friendly companions, especially during the holidays. And they need conversational marketing to achieve those goals.


Why WhatsApp is perfect for holiday outreach

If conversational marketing is the song of the season, then WhatsApp is the leading melody. With over 2 billion active users globally, WhatsApp isn’t just another messaging app; it’s where people connect with loved ones, make plans, and yes—engage with their favorite brands. 

Its intimate, user-friendly interface makes it the ideal platform for businesses to establish genuine connections with their customer base. Plus, businesses see a 75%+ open rate on WhatsApp, which blows other channels out of the water.

But you won't unlock WhatsApp’s full potential by blasting promotions or last-minute deals. Instead, you need to craft holiday campaigns and strategies that actively engage customers who choose to connect with you. 

3 WhatsApp campaign strategies to find, grow, and delight your audiences

The clock is ticking, and now is the time to unwrap the secrets to holiday marketing success on WhatsApp. Read on to see what goes into a great holiday WhatsApp campaign that’ll not only boost sales, but also deepen the bond between you and your audience.

1. Don’t give up on growing your subscriber list


With the holidays looming around the corner, you may think it’s too late to expand your brand’s reach on WhatsApp. However, one man’s deadline is another’s prime window of opportunity.

Growing your subscriber list is not just about tallying up a large number of names, but nurturing genuine connections with each of those people. With the right strategies in place, every new subscriber represents a possibility: a potential loyal customer, a chance for repeat business, and a relationship that’ll last long after the holiday cheer fades.

Let's dig into two tactics to bolster both your WhatsApp subscriber count ahead of the holidays.


Promote your WhatsApp in the right places

It’s not enough to create a WhatsApp and expect customers to come find you; you have to go out and find your customers where they already spend their time.  

Tap into multiple touchpoints, such as:


Your website: 

There’s no better place to ask customers to opt-in to messaging than your own website. Whether it's on the home page, product pages, or even the “Contact Us” page, invite customers to connect via WhatsApp wherever your socials are listed.


Social media

Your brand's social media platforms are bustling hubs of engagement. Promote your WhatsApp channel in bio links, stories, or dedicated posts on Facebook, Instagram, or TikTok. Let your followers know that a more personal, direct line of communication is open to them through WhatsApp.


Emails

In your newsletter or promotional emails, include a call-to-action urging readers to connect with you on WhatsApp. A quick line of copy emphasizing exclusive WhatsApp offers or updates can be a huge incentive.


Retail stores

For brick-and-mortar businesses, point-of-sale promotions work wonders. QR codes printed on receipts or flyers at checkout, or even simple signage urging customers to join your WhatsApp can make a huge difference.


Other locations

Think outside the box and consider physical or digital billboards, transportation advertising spaces, or even QR codes on product packaging.


Collect customer preferences

Growing your subscriber list is step one, but communicating in a way that resonates with each of those new subscribers is the real challenge. This is where collecting your customers’ preferences enters the fray.

As soon as users opt into your WhatsApp channel, seize this opportunity to understand them better. Start with a friendly, quick survey, asking about your customer’s preferred: 

  • Interests: Do they lean more towards certain types of products or services that you offer? This information can guide product recommendations during the holiday rush.


  • Frequency of updates: How often do they want to hear from you? Some people prefer monthly updates to weekly digests, while others would be open to daily flash deals.


  • Content preferences: Are they only interested in discounts and promotional offers? Or would they like to receive other types of messages from you, such as tips, recipes, or even heartwarming holiday stories?

Collecting these preferences doesn't just personalize the interaction—it gives subscribers agency over how you communicate with them. Respecting their preferences is critical. You can most consistently respect your subscribers’ wishes by leaning on automation to make sure they only ever receive messages related to what they originally asked for. 

One important note here: Be sure customers know if WhatsApp serves as a feedback channel as well. If it is, share how they can provide feedback to your brand or make direct inquiries with your support team.

When brands listen, consumers respond. In the frenzy of the holiday season, this personal touch could be your differentiator and proof that you really care, making future interactions that much more meaningful.


2. Integrate WhatsApp journeys throughout your campaigns

Just because WhatsApp is a peer-to-peer platform doesn’t mean that you should write and send each message by hand. In fact, automation is the secret to making WhatsApp marketing campaigns at scale possible, especially during the holiday rush. Automation not only streamlines operations, but also ensures timely, relevant interactions. 

Let's explore some automated strategies that can amplify your brand's presence (and sales) this holiday season.

Welcome series


First impressions are everything. Start with a bang by deploying a welcome series themed around the holidays. Send a sequence of messages that introduce your brand, share your holiday offerings, and get them excited for the festive season. 

A warm greeting and thanks for subscribing, followed by exclusive deals or a sneak peek into holiday collections can get new subscribers buzzing with anticipation to make their first purchase. Remember, the goal is not just to inform, but to excite and entice.


Abandonment reminders


It's a common scenario: a customer adds items to their cart or browses through a collection, only to get distracted or decide not to purchase. Set up automated reminders that nudge these customers, emphasizing the limited time they have to place their order to receive it by key holiday milestones. 

A simple message and image like, "Remember these boots you liked? There’s only a few days left to order if you want to strut in them by Christmas!" can reignite interest and drive conversions.


Inventory alerts


Nothing says urgency like a low stock alert, especially for items on a subscriber's wishlist. Automate alerts that notify subscribers of stock levels for items they've shown interest in, increasing urgency. 

Spur speedy action and drive sales with messages like, "The toy train set you browsed? Only 5 left in stock!" or "Good news! The winter coat you loved is back in stock. Grab yours before they're gone!"


Order tracking


With the influx of orders during the holiday season, customers can grow anxious about whether they’ll receive their purchases on time. You can soothe these concerns with automated order tracking. 

From the moment an order is placed to the second it's delivered, keep your subscribers in the loop. Send real-time updates, allowing customers to follow their purchases or reschedule their deliveries at every stage. This not only manages expectations and reduces the load on your support team, but also reinforces trust in your brand.


Returns and exchanges


Post-holiday returns and exchanges are inevitable. Rather than letting them become a point of frustration, use automation to transform returns and exchanges into a smooth experience for everyone. 

Set up automated conversations that guide customers step-by-step through the process of returning an item. Answer FAQs, provide return labels, or maybe even suggest alternative products or sizes. Speed and simplicity are key. By reducing friction and frustration for customers, you can turn a potentially negative experience into a positive touchpoint, further cementing their loyalty.


3. Craft personal WhatsApp content that captures attention and delights

Content is the beating heart of any successful marketing campaign. With the holiday season around the corner, you have a plethora of opportunities to send meaningful, engaging, and timely messages to your subscribers. 

Here are some content ideas to ensure your brand shines:


Send seasonal bulk campaigns

The days leading up to major shopping events, like Black Friday and Cyber Monday, are gold mines of engagement. Leverage this by sending out bulk campaigns highlighting special promotions, discounts, or exclusive products tied to seasonal holidays. Craft compelling, concise messages that create a sense of urgency, pushing subscribers to make purchases.

Example: "Countdown to Black Friday! 🖤 Holiday deals dropping soon. Stay tuned to grab your holiday promo code!”


Curate lists of gift ideas

The holiday season can be overwhelming—coming up with gifts for loved ones year after year isn’t easy. Lighten their load by sharing curated lists of gift ideas to simplify the holiday shopping ordeal. Here’s where knowing the preferences of your subscribers comes in handy as you personalize these lists.

Example: "Struggling to come up with holiday gift ideas, [Name]? 🎁 Here's a curated list of five great gifts for the home chefs in your life."


Offer exclusive early access

Everyone loves feeling special. Reward your loyal WhatsApp subscribers by giving them a head start on sales, promotions, or new product launches. This incentivizes them to make purchases and reinforces their desire to stay subscribed on WhatsApp, knowing that they’ll likely get even more exclusive benefits in the future.


Example: "Hello, VIP! 🌟 As a thank you for being a cherished member of our WhatsApp community, here's early access to our winter sale."


Follow up after the holiday season

The holiday rush might be over, but your engagement shouldn't be. Reward active customers with continued offers, discounts, or previews into the new year. It's an excellent way to retain interest and set the stage for the year ahead.

Example: "A New Year treat for our star shopper, [Name]! 🎉 Enjoy 15% off our fresh arrivals. Cheers to a stylish 2024!"


Highlight two-way communication capabilities

WhatsApp excels in being interactive. Make it abundantly clear to subscribers that the communication channel is open both ways. They can reach out for product advice, more information, or even personalized suggestions. And with integrated WhatsApp chatbots and automations, you can provide tailored responses instantly.

Example: "Got questions or need gift suggestions? 🤔 Drop us a message anytime, and let's chat! For quick answers, chat with our helper bot 24/7."

Final checklist for your WhatsApp holiday campaign

As you gear up for the big holiday push, it's essential to ensure that all the pieces of your WhatsApp marketing puzzle are in place. Preparation is crucial to running a stress-free, seamless campaign that yields results. 

Here's a checklist to guide you through those crucial final steps.


Proactively prepare your content assets

Your assets—the messages and images you send out—are the core of your WhatsApp campaign. But you can’t just copy and paste marketing content from your other channels into a messaging app. WhatsApp plays the brand messaging game by different rules.


This is important: Every message you send via WhatsApp as a business that gives recipients the option to respond and start a conversation has to be pre-approved by WhatsApp, and you always have to use a template.


WhatsApp has very strict compliance standards to avoid spam. The app monitors the quality of your brand messages and can deactivate your account or increase the amount of daily messages accordingly. What this means is that content quality is much more important than quantity on WhatsApp—you want to avoid spam at all costs, and engage users with genuinely interesting content.



Here are some tools and strategies you can use to create high quality creative content assets: 

  • Creation: MessageBird is designed to facilitate seamless creation of message templates with an interactive user interface. Drag and drop blocks to create rich, interactive templates. You can even create multiple variations and run A/B tests.

  • Localization: Remember, holidays are celebrated differently across the globe. Ensure your content resonates with each segment of your audience by localizing message variables to cater to specific cultures, geographies, traditions, and languages.

  • Personalization: Generic messages are easily forgotten. Make your subscribers feel special by personalizing your content instead of sending out the same message to your entire audience. Use customer’s names, past purchase history, and preferences to tailor your messages with dynamic variations.

  • Team Collaboration: Communication is crucial, especially during a high-volume holiday rush. Make sure your marketing, design, and sales teams are all on the same page. Use collaborative tools and regular sync-ups to ensure consistency and avoid last-minute hiccups.


Schedule messages and campaigns in advance

The holiday season is chaotic and hectic. Get a head start by pre-scheduling as many messaging campaigns as possible. 

By automating the scheduled sending of your WhatsApp messages, you can ensure they hit subscribers' inboxes at optimal times, without any delays or overlaps. It alleviates last-minute stress and ensures your campaigns run like well-oiled machines.


Familiarize yourself with analytics


Clear insights into how your campaigns perform help you understand what success looks like. You can identify what resonates with your audience and what doesn’t, allowing you to refine your messaging strategies.

  • Before launch: Get comfortable with your analytics tools. Know where to find crucial metrics like open rates, click-through rates, and conversion percentages and what these mean for your campaign. You can track chatbot metrics, as well, like drop offs and conversions. 

  • During your campaign: Use these metrics to double down on what’s working, or pivot where things need to change. Tweak your templates or chatbot conversations accordingly. 

  • Post-campaign: Dedicate time to analyze your numbers, draw actionable insights, and refine your future strategies.

Conversations over conversions

Just like the reason for the holiday season, WhatsApp marketing is all about heart and human connection. While conversions are a tangible metric of success, they are not the sole indicator of a campaign's effectiveness. The differentiator of WhatsApp, as a platform, is its ability to foster genuine conversations, bridging the gap between brands and consumers.

Since WhatsApp is still a very new marketing channel, there’s an opportunity for brands to swoop in and dominate the playing field as other brands fail to leverage its potential for personalization.



The real beauty of WhatsApp comes through in its ability to orchestrate conversational marketing with customers that are actually interested in the experience because they’ve opted-in. These are customers who want to hear from you; they’re all either close to converting or have already converted. 


For example, when a customer abandons their cart, WhatsApp can automatically:

  • Send a 10% discount

  • Answer any product questions a customer asks 

  • Offer similar recommendations

  • Check inventory, and more.

And you can keep everything within WhatsApp, so that customers don’t need to click on links to complete purchases. All of this drives more sales. 

You don’t have to pick between conversational or conversion-focused anymore. With Bird’s WhatsApp for Business, you can be both. 

Your new standard in Marketing, Payments & Sales. It's Bird

The right message -> to the right person -> at the right time.

Your new standard in Marketing, Payments & Sales. It's Bird

The right message -> to the right person -> at the right time.