In the first of a series of blog posts we’ll be publishing about everything messenger marketing, we thought it important to outline what we understand about data protection in this arena and how we’ve applied this to our own news service.

During 2018 all businesses have had to ensure they are compliant with the new GDPR rules, or face hefty fines and penalties.

We’ve spent a lot of time this year helping our clients understand the do’s and dont’s of how to manage and store customer data gathered via social media and digital channels.

To meet the new standards your communications must be:

  • Consensual
  • Secure
  • Removable

User privacy through the commercial usage of messenger apps such as Facebook
Messenger and WhatsApp have become the latest data protection topic, and especially since WhatsApp for Business was launched earlier this year.

Consent and Double Opt-In

There are parallels between email marketing and messenger marketing data protection; consent from the user is the deciding factor.

So when we launched our messenger marketing newsletter service, we needed to give users the ability to actively and affirmatively demonstrate that they would like to receive newsletters from Crowd via WhatsApp and/or Facebook Messenger.

On our website and in our blogs about messenger marketing you can access the integrated widget that allows you to sign up for our newsletter.

A subscription to our news through WhatsApp requires the user’s active agreement which consists of two steps:

1. Adding our given phone number into their own address book of contacts

2. Actively sending a message that says “start”

By performing these two steps, the user has signed up for our news service via WhatsApp and given their consent to receive updates from Crowd.

Again, it’s comparable to the double opt-in procedure for email newsletter subscription – when a customer chooses to sign up, they are then asked to click on a link to confirm their subscription.

We also make it clear in our welcome message to users who have signed up to receive our news via WhatsApp that they can also cancel their subscription at any time, simply by sending the message “STOP”.

The software that we use automatically deletes that user’s telephone number and all details and messages associated with their profile from our system. Its an instant process that is automated once the word “STOP” has been received through their number.

The software that we use to send our newsletters doesn’t give WhatsApp access to any address books.

And what about Facebook?

Facebook also sets rules and issues guidelines that apply to Facebook Messenger marketing.

We ensure we are following the four Facebook Messenger marketing rules, similar to those explained above for WhatsApp:

1. We ensure we get user opt-in as described in the process above for WhatsApp through a double opt-in process

2. We follow Facebooks 24+1 Rule which means after the first 24 hours of engaging with a new business contact through our Facebook Page we can only send one promotional message every 24 hours (we actually average one broadcast per week, with a maximum of no more than 2-3 per week)

3. We specify the purposes of the message at sign-up stage – for example for Crowd, we are using the Facebook Messenger service to deliver news from our industry and jurisdiction, as well as global insights and our own updates.

4. We always let users know in our welcome message that they can unsubscribe simply and easily at anytime by sending the word “STOP”

Interested in learning more?

Hopefully this explains how we have managed the user opt-in process through our own messenger subscription service.

If you’d like to understand more about how we can help you understand how to integrate messenger marketing in a fully compliant way into your business communications – get in touch or why not sign-up to our own newsletter service below to see this in action?

-  Newsletter Signup  -

By choosing to receive Crowd newsletters, you can be assured we will only provide you with informative and valuable content on the ever changing communications landscape.