WhatsApp: Seven years ago, the founders of WhatsApp announced that they were definitely not planning to advertise their own messenger. A few years after the takeover by Facebook, the story was very different. In the end, Facebook had such different plans for WhatsApp that co-founders and employees from the very beginning at WhatsApp have submitted their resignations over the past few years.
At some point, everyone was sure, we will have to live with advertising in WhatsApp. Paid accounts had been abolished over time. As early as 2015, Facebook began to experiment internally with advertising, different types had been tried. But initially only for your own messenger, it was said at the time. People talked about it very openly at events. At that time, WhatsApp’s payment program still existed, which at 79 cents per year was never really meant seriously.
WhatsApp: Plans for advertising took shape very slowly
In the course of time it became clearer that WhatsApp also got integrated advertising. The co-founders were already out of the company. First, Facebook announced a WhatsApp, which is “more open” for advertising. A rather cryptic message that was later specified. In the meantime, the status was able to establish itself as a popular function, the origin of which was in the competing Snapchat. With the status, the place was born in which WhatsApp wants to advertise.
In 2019 it should be so far, WhatsApp confirmed the plans to display advertisements in the status and demonstrated their own ideas. But the plans were delayed, from 2019 to 2020. And active WhatsApp users know that not a single advertisement was displayed in WhatsApp in the past year. Nevertheless, the gradual development could be observed for many years, this year a new dynamic was added.
– Olivier Ponteville (@Olivier_Ptv) May 21, 2019
Before our eyes: technical preparation seems to have taken place
Advertising in WhatsApp is still not a short-term topic. In any case, there is no public start date. Insiders were even able to determine that the corresponding development progress had disappeared from the app. But the technical preparation happened anyway. Just not that obvious. Since the beginning of the year, WhatsApp has been able to push your own posts in the status area. Previously, we could only see posts from our WhatsApp contacts there.
WhatsApp is also able to show small banners in our chat list. According to the company, both functions are not intended for advertising purposes, but rather for customer information. But, as we know, that can change quickly. In my opinion, at least these two functions are predestined to help the app to generate direct advertising revenue at some point.
At about the same time, confirmed reports came up that WhatsApp was still working on integrating advertisements. This topic has only been “put on hold” for a while, because the direct linking of the chat services WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger and Instagram Direct is to be completed first. It is then not only possible for users of different Facebook services to communicate with one another. Facebook could also use this to centrally display advertising to all three apps.