Facebook has revealed and confirmed that the world’s most popular web-based mobile messaging platform WhatsApp, will start showing advertisements. The social media giant also revealed how the ads will be severed and even mentioned the location of promotional messages. At the moment it appears Facebook will not be sending out ads into the main conversation feed.
When Facebook bought WhatsApp, many in the tech industry confidently predicted the former will sooner rather than later, monetize the platform. Following the exit of the co-founder, those fears were compounded. Now laying the speculations to rest, Facebook has started work on serving ads within WhatsApp. Several presentation slides have even offered visual confirmation about the same. These slides were presented at the recent Facebook Marketing Summit held in the Netherlands.
Slides shown at the event clearly confirm that Facebook is set to monetize the world’s most popular messaging app. The photos of the slides were captured by Olivier Ponteville, head of media at ‘Be Connect’ digital marketing agency. Back in October 2018, Facebook executive Chris Daniels had mentioned that the social media platform plans to start inserting ads in WhatsApp. However, the official did not indicate any specific timeline. Daniels had even added that the ads would be the service’s “primary monetization mode for the company”.
In the recently held event, Facebook has effectively confirmed WhatsApp will get ads next year. In other words, WhatsApp users will start seeing promotional messages that allow businesses to push customer engagement from 2020. Strangely, there’s still no confirmed timeline. It is quite possible Facebook will gradually start inserting ads in WhatsApp, and perhaps tweak the format and methodology of delivery before rolling out to all users.
According to the presentation slides, Facebook has chosen the ‘WhatsApp Status’ tab as the default location to serve ads. Needless to add, the Status tab is similar to Instagram Stories. The format of the ads will be dynamic, containing audio and visuals, just like the current format of WhatsApp Status. Moreover, the ads will take up the device’s entire screen. Users, who wish to engage with the ad or with the business, will need to simply swipe up for more information. Businesses could insert multiple types of actions that users can take after viewing the ad.
Facebook has strongly resisted inserting ads in WhatsApp, despite etching a $19 Billion deal to acquire the popular messaging platform way back in October 2014. However, it is now going ahead with monetizing the same.