After Facebook and Instagram, its now WhatsApp’s turn to be used for targeted advertising. For now, only data from the platform will be utilized for advertising. The mobile messaging app will give user information including phone numbers to its parent company Facebook, as part of plans to allow businesses to send messages to users.
While the users will have 30 days to decide whether they want to opt of their information being used for ad targeting on Facebook, they would not have any option of their data not being shared with the social network. Facebook has said that it ‘wants to explore ways to communicate with businesses that matter to users, while still giving an experience without third-party banner ads and spam’.
As of now, Facebook utilized the social network platform along with Instagram for advertising while Messenger and WhatsApp platforms were still unexplored. The ad targeting will be on Facebook’s platform, which has 1.71 billion monthly active users, with majority of the usage coming from developed countries. This is where WhatsApp is a step ahead as users who are not able to use Facebook in developing countries or areas of poor connectivity are able to use WhatsApp.
It would be interesting to see how Facebook is able to generate revenue utilizing data from the messaging app, while at the same time not spamming its users with banner ads or convincing people to share data.