Why Every Marketer Should Be Keeping Up With the Evolution of Messaging Apps
ADWEEK|March 7, 2016

A huge and young audience is flocking to the 'ask and you shall receive' platforms for communication and commerce.

Jim Tomanchek

One of the byproducts of consumers moving away from desktop access to the Web via their smartphones is that they augment their email (and the occasional phone call) with mobile messaging apps.

In fact, younger, highly desirable consumers like teens and young adults don’t even use email anymore. (Email your teen right now and see how long it takes for a response, if you ever get one.) They communicate almost exclusively through apps.

So, over the past few years, we’ve seen the rise of messaging apps like Snapchat, WeChat, WhatsApp, Kik and, of course, Facebook Messenger.

Until recently, their massive audiences have been largely untapped by advertisers. There are more monthly active users of messaging apps than social networking apps: about 3 billion vs. 2.5 billion. The top four messaging apps—WhatsApp and Messenger (both owned by Facebook), WeChat and Viber—have nearly 3 billion users alone. When you dig into just the Facebook properties, WhatsApp has 1 billion users and Facebook Messenger has 800 million monthly active users.

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