Mobile chat apps like WhatsApp and Snapchat have become increasingly popular in recent years, especially among young consumers. In fact, a report by Digiday found that most popular mobile chat apps experienced significant growth, some even doubling their reach, between April 2014 and April 2015. But these apps don’t just offer a way for friends to share messages with one another anymore. Now, brands are even getting involved and using mobile chat apps to reach out to consumers. So how many currently use these mobile chat apps? And how many are likely to connect with brands on those platforms at some point in the future?
Mobile Chat Apps
In Ask Your Target Market’s latest survey, 39% of respondents said that they currently use the Facebook Messenger App. 23% use Skype’s mobile apps. 13% use Snapchat. 8% use WhatsApp. 6% use Kik. 4% use Viber. 2% use WeChat. 6% use other mobile chat apps. And 45% said that they don’t currently use any.
Of those who do use mobile chat apps, 49% of users said that they’ve used their apps within the past day. 22% have used mobile chat apps within the past week. 9% have used them within the past month. Another 9% have used them within the past three months. 5% have used them within the past year. And 7% said they haven’t used mobile chat apps in over a year.
30% of consumers who use mobile chat apps said that they connect with multiple brands on those platforms. And another 14% connect with just one brand. Facebook, Nike, Instagram, Amazon, Starbucks, Google, Dove, Target, ESPN and the NBA were all mentioned by chat app users as brands that they’ve connected with on those platforms.
Of those who don’t connect with any brands on mobile chat apps, 11% said that they are at least somewhat likely to connect with brands on those platforms in the future. 56% said that they are unlikely to do so. And 33% are neutral or have no opinion.
And looking forward, 8% of those who don’t currently use mobile chat apps at all said that they would be likely to download or use those apps at some point within the next year. 76% said they would be unlikely to do so. And 17% were neutral or undecided.
While mobile chat apps offer a different type of experience than social media platforms, they do offer a similar opportunity for consumers to connect with some of their favorite brands. So gauging those connections on social media could be a good indicator of what brands might expect on mobile chat apps. Currently, 30% of respondents said that they connect with multiple brands on social media. And 15% connect with just one brand. Those who already use mobile chat apps were 11% more likely to connect with brands on social media.
To facilitate those connections, there are a few different tactics that brands can take. 69% of social media users said that they are likely to connect with brands on those platforms because of discounts or special offers. 63% said they connect with brands on social media because of contests or giveaways. 49% like to see updates about new products. 33% like to see information about special events. 25% like to see other company updates. And 6% connect with brands for other reasons, like recipes, tips and helpful articles.
Aside from determining the growing popularity of mobile chat apps, particularly among young consumers, this data finds that there could be more opportunity for brands to connect with consumers on those apps. Although there isn’t likely to be a huge influx of new mobile chat app users in the near future, the percentage of mobile chat app users who connect with brands on on those platforms is very similar to the percentage of people who connect with brands on social media. So if social media is any indicator, then offering things like discounts and contests could potentially increase the reach of brands using mobile chat apps.
You can view the complete survey results in the widget below and be sure to click “Open Full Report” to take advantage of all the chart and filter options.
What do you want to know? If you need some consumer insights on a particular topic, let us know in the comments below and we’ll consider it for an upcoming survey post.
Results were collected on May 19 via AYTM’s online survey panel.