EWN, Primedia Broadcasting’s award-winning news brand, launched another first in South Africa this April – sending news updates via WhatsApp. After only a few months, the response has been remarkable.
EWN is using the broadcast list functionality on WhatsApp to send out the EWN morning brief and the EWN round-up of the day’s stories in the afternoon to a database of subscribers.
“This has been an exciting development for EWN as it allows us to send mobile-friendly content directly to mobile users – it’s convenient, free and offers busy users a curated snapshot of the day’s news, enabling them to follow up on whichever stories appeal to them,” said EWN editor-in-chief Katy Katopodis.
Always in-tune with what audiences need, EWN includes not only a weather forecast but at present, they have added a power forecast, to help users to plan around load-shedding.
The broadcast list allows subscribers to engage with EWN, but does not reveal the identity of any other members of the list. Within a month of launching, EWN had already attracted over 4 000 subscribers, converting to over 20 000 click throughs to the EWN mobi site and over 2 100 click throughs to the desktop site. A high level of engagement achieved with little promotion. Since then the subscriber base has climbed to over 6 500.
The WhatsApp messages are short and punchy, speaking to the user in the lingo of WhatsApp – spiked with emoticons and cheeky commentary to introduce each link, which takes the user to the full story on the mobi site.
“WhatsApp has the capability to support a number of other ideas we have so the potential to give users an even richer experience is there, and will be rolled out as this project evolves,” said Katopodis.
Sign up easily by following the step by step process at //ewn.co.za/whatsapp
Want to continue this conversation on The Media Online platforms? Comment on Twitter @MediaTMO or on our Facebook page. Send us your suggestions, comments, contributions or tip-offs via e-mail to email@example.com.