In our age of hyper-communication and hyper-connectivity, it is hard to imagine our lives without the convenience of instant messaging communication. It is also evident that there has been an exponential increase in the usage of instant messaging applications during the midst of, and emerging from, the Covid-19 pandemic. The rapid increase in using different instant messaging applications is in part due to the travel restrictions that were in place for different countries where most travelers are forced to stay at home.
According to a study conducted at the beginning of 2022, it has been observed that the frequency of messages being sent during the beginning of the pandemic back in 2020 is nearly 3 times higher than the average number of messages sent per day pre-Covid times. Even now, people are opting to use instant messaging to contact not only their family and friends but businesses, including luxury hotels and resorts to communicate with the property directly before their stay.
For luxury hotels and resorts, it is important that we know and understand the messaging platforms that our guests mostly use, so we can communicate with them directly on these platforms, and also use them as an opportunity to elevate the guest experience journey. We have searched the commonly-used messaging applications by hotel guests and what makes each different from the other.
Whatsapp is one of the most popular messaging applications that has approximately 2 Billion users in 150 countries. Whatsapp application allows its users to send messages, photos, videos, and files to their contacts. Whatsapp also allows businesses to have their own official Whatsapp Business Account where businesses can create profiles, communicate with their guests, and send automated messages. In a study conducted and released in 2022 by Meta, more than 1 billion people interact with a business over WhatsApp PER WEEK.
Facebook Messenger is the next messaging application that follows Whatsapp with registered users of around 1.3 billion worldwide. Same as Whatsapp, you can send messages, videos, files, and other multimedia files that you want to send to other users. Businesses have also integrated their digital marketing strategy into Facebook Messenger due to its average open rate of 70-80% which is significantly higher compared to emails.
Originating in China, Wechat is the social platform that not only connects most Chinese people across China but also because of its gaining popularity, connects a million users outside of China. It is what you call a “multi-purpose app” as you can do so many things in the application from making payments to online shopping. On top of the fact that WeChat is the de facto social media platform in China. Most of its users are from China and have around 1.2 billion active users per month.
Line is known to be the most popular and widely used messaging application in Japan and Taiwan. Back in 2011, when Japan was hit by an 8.9 magnitude earthquake followed by a tsunami, this application was developed to be used as an alternative to the telecommunications network that was damaged. Line has around 178 million active users per month.
Another popular messaging application worldwide is Viber which was founded in Israel and bought by the Japanese company, Rakuten. It gained popularity due to its secret chat feature, and encryption. You can send messages, photos, videos, and voice calls in this app, and even allows businesses to create their own “Public Account” to communicate to their customers. They have around 260 million active users per month.
Telegram is fairly new to the messaging application market as compared to its competitors, but it continues to have more users registering to its platform. You can also send messages, voice and video calls, photos, videos, and other files. It also has a feature called “self-destruct” for messages and files where you can set a time after they have been opened or read by the receiver. They have around 200 million active users per month, and its popularity is in certain European countries, but growing globally due to its emphasis on security and privacy.
As a luxury hotel and resort, you would want to create another way for your guests to reach out to you aside from emails or phone calls, which you can do now with instant messaging. If you want to utilize messaging as a mode of communication for your guests, then platforms such as Glowing.io provide an opportunity for your property to directly communicate with your guests across all of the popular messaging platforms we have mentioned in this article.
Glowing.io aims to provide an easy, yet impactful solution for all luxury hotels and resorts to help drive guests’ engagement, and loyalty with an ultimate impact on both the top and bottom lines. Glowing.io’s platform will make communication with your guests easy, simple, and personalized, as communication starts with each guest’ preferred messaging platform, from which there are many.