British Vogue is testing fashion news alerts on WhatsApp

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Publishers like The Huffington Post and BBC have used WhatsApp to send news alerts and tell long stories, respectively. But Vogue believes it’s the first fashion magazine to join the messaging app (however, Glamor magazine is also testing the space). Since February, when New York Fashion Week kicked off, Vogue has been sending the latest runway looks and the latest fashion news to subscriber phones.

“Joining our group means we’ll send you a message as soon as Dior’s creative director is announced, or the Chanel show photos go live, or the Oscar dresses hit the site—no more scrolling through Twitter or to rely on the tabloids for your latest fashion fix.”

To receive Vogue alerts on WhatsApp, users need to text “Fashion” to Vogue, then they will receive all their alerts. In its first few weeks on WhatsApp, Vogue had plenty of fashion week fodder to deliver to its WhatsApp followers. Lucy Hutchings, editor-in-chief of Vogue.co.uk, said that so far top artists on WhatsApp have included alerts to see images from the Chanel, Saint Laurent and Alexander McQueen shows, airing less than an hour after the presentation of the collections.

Outside of fashion week, Vogue sent followers a link to the Oscars red carpet gallery as coverage was live and the breaking news alert in which Bouchra Jarrar was Lanvin’s next creative director , replacing Alber Elbaz.

British Vogue on WhatsApp.

British Vogue said early registration figures and user engagement were “impressive”, but would not elaborate.

Vogue has been limited in its use of the app, sending no more than two alerts, and sometimes no alerts, per day. On Twitter, British Vogue posts more than 30 times in two hours.

“We respect our readers’ use of WhatsApp as a channel typically used to communicate with friends and family,” Hutchings said. “So we’ve limited our posts to make sure we don’t overwhelm users’ feeds, while ensuring they get top fashion news headlines straight to their phones first.”

Currently, WhatsApp and other platforms like Snapchat offer a quieter alternative for publishers sharing news and stories, compared to Twitter and Facebook.

“It’s a clean environment,” said David Cooperstein, CMO of programmatic direct mail platform PebblePost and technical analyst Forrester. “Editors know that people spend a lot of time [on WhatsApp]and they’re looking for ways to get exposure where there isn’t a lot of competition. »

Apps like WhatsApp also provide a safe space from ad blockers.

However, the grass is not completely green on messaging platforms for publishers. WhatsApp’s director of communications, Brandon McCormick, told Digiday last year that WhatsApp had no plans to create a formal alert feature in the app – for now, the platform’s publishers form must use it as if they were personal accounts.

Cooperstein also added that finding a less cluttered social marketing tool like WhatsApp is the challenge of keeping it that way.

“How do you make sure people only get messages from companies you want to hear about? Eventually they’ll try to get ads into the platform, and then then we’ll have text blockers,” a- he declared.

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