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WhatsApp: Powerful Tool for Building a Community


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In this lecture I will share my insights about building communities using WhatsApp.
Thoses inisghts were gained after building 2 very strong tech groups that got the media attention.

* You can hear the full presentation on SoundCloud:

* Read more about it on LinkedIn:

Published in: Technology

WhatsApp: Powerful Tool for Building a Community

  1. 1. 1 WhatsApp: Powerful Tool for Building a Community Morad Stern Hewlett Packard Enterprise, HPE
  2. 2. Part 1: Results of using WhatsApp as a community platform Part 2: What is WhatsApp? Part 3: Strategies for building WhatsApp community! 2 Let’s Talk About… Photo Credit: WhatsApp
  3. 3. 3 Community is Power • Mashable • Wall Street Journal • CNN • Uber • Waze • LinkedIn • Flipboard • Bloomberg • Lenovo • Amazon • Forbes • The Next Web • Women Who Code • Warner Bros • Twitter • TechCrunch • eBay • Microsoft ventures • Google ventures • MarketWatch • Outbrain • Fortune • SlideShare • Government US & France “Global Tech Leaders WhatsApp group” Is one group that I’ve build, using WhatsApp, brings together participants from around the world who are senior management in the following tech companies:
  4. 4. 4 Community is Power “What’s Bill Gates phone number?” - A short article on Forbes (Israel) about my Global Tech Leaders WhatsApp group Photo Credit: Screenshot, Forbes
  5. 5. 5 February, 2016: Photo Credit: WhatsApp
  6. 6. 6 WhatsApp Attributes • IM network (ultra fast when comparing to social networks) • Requires SIM card (minimum fake accounts) • Private and Group chats • Geo, images, video and voice sharing • Links sharing
  7. 7. 7 WhatsApp Attributes • No geo barriers • No way to find groups… • No way to share outside (except screen capture) • Acquired by Facebook on February, 2014
  8. 8. 8 Latest Upgrades • WhatsApp via Chrome (“WhatsApp web”) • Voice chats • Option for backup using Google Drive • Groups’ capacity extended to 256 participates (100)
  9. 9. 9 Research 70% of Smartphone owners would never leave their WhatsApp app. More than Waze (57%) Bezeq, 2014 Photo Credit: Screenshot, Calcalist
  10. 10. 10 Alternatives? • Viber • Telegram • WeChat
  11. 11. 11 Creative: Media Photo Credit: Screenshot, Mako During the Israeli national elections one of the leading news site created and followed a dedicated groups for candidates on Viber and WhatsApp
  12. 12. 12 Creative: getting headlines (!) I invited Israel’s Minister of Finance and the British ambassador to join my WhatsApp group - and it hit the main headlines (!) Photo Credit: Screenshot, TheMarker
  13. 13. 13 Creative: creating news A conversation inside WhatsApp group - that become an article Photo Credit: Screenshot, Mako
  14. 14. 14 Creative … The same article is now back as a WhatsApp conversation…
  15. 15. 15 Creative Interesting example of a newspaper that invite its readers to send pictures and updates from live news events Photo Credit: Screenshot, Extra
  16. 16. 16 Creative (Physical) Photo shop in Israel that uses WhatsApp to receive photos from costumers and to update them when to come and pick their printed pictures Photo Credit: Vladimir Fedotov, Flickr CC
  17. 17. 17 Creative Residents of the favelas in Brazil uses WhatsApp to update with live gun shooting Photo Credit: Alex, Flickr CC
  18. 18. 18 Creative Doctors in Africa use WhatsApp to examine patients from distant regions Photo Credit: Screenshot, TechZim
  19. 19. 19 Strategy Ask yourself • What's your topic? -Be clear • Who are the participants? – Variation will enrich your group’s discussion • What’s the value of being a member in your group? (VIP, events tickets, fame) Notice • It requires trust (phone number) • It takes time and hard work • It’s OK to silent your group… • There is a limit of 256 participant (which is way too much) • No way to search for groups inside WhatsApp • …You are using Smartphone - use it’s different functions (camera, GPS, sound etc.) Photo Credit: WhatsApp
  20. 20. 20 Strategy Here some great stuff you can do: • Invite VIP to your group: It has an amazing affect! Don’t forget to print-screen and share on social networks! • My son (10 years old) used to record himself every morning reading the whether forecast and sharing it in the family group. Nice • Use the geo sharing option in conference – to locate other group members • Meeting a group member face to face? Selfie yourself and share with the group! Photo Credit: WhatsApp
  21. 21. 21 Before you go! • Think twice before sharing information • Check for typo • Don’t hurt anyone • Check again if you’re in the right group • You cannot erase a message once it is shared • Think twice before adding someone to your group Photo Credit: Blondinrikard Fröberg, Flickr CC
  22. 22. 22 One more thing… • People are more sensitive on this platform • No limit for characters use but keep it short • 3rd party statistics tools • Try to expand your WhatsApp group’s connections with more social networks and platforms
  23. 23. 23 Morad Stern, @Morad Thank you! This lecture available also on You can read more about it on Photo Credit: SoundCloud, LinkedIn