Messaging Apps & Brands: Telegram Messenger

 In News

As of December 7th, 2019, companies are no longer able to send WhatsApp newsletter to their customers. What alternatives can businesses use instead? Telegram, the blue messaging app from Dubai, is a free, secure messaging app newsletter alternative.

In this article we’ll show you what possibilities Telegram offers businesses and how businesses are already successfully using the app for customer communication.


Quick Facts: Telegram

✔︎ Claim: the secure alternative to WhatsApp & Co.

✔︎ User statistics: ca. 300 million users global

✔︎ Target group: used by tech companies and start ups

​✔︎ Newsletter: subscribe by writing “start”- and unsubscribe by writing “stop”

​✔︎ Advantages: independent search in the app

​✔︎ Costs: no costs

​✔︎ Important: many MessengerPeople customers see great resonance offering newsletters via Telegram


In this article you’ll learn:

  1. What to know about Telegram
  2. Telegram: Business Opportunities & Features
  3. Best Practice: 3 companies that successfully use Telegram
  4. Conclusion: Telegram worldwide

What to know about Telegram

Telegram Messenger was launched in 2013. It was founded by Pavel Durov, the mind behind the Russian Facebook equivalent VKontakte. Telegram Messenger LLP is based in Dubai, and can be used on mobile as well as on desktop.

Telegram is in some ways similar to Threema: it’s a messaging app with a big focus on security, and known for being more protected than other messaging apps. Telegram itself highlights this point on its website: “Telegram is a cloud-based mobile and desktop messaging app with a focus on security and speed.” Telegram offers two forms of encryption. Chats and group chats are by default protected by a client – server / server – client encryption mechanism and stored encrypted in the Telegram cloud.

In addition, for secret chats (no group chats) an end-to-end encryption or client-client encryption is offered, in which messages can be provided with a “self-destruct” mechanism. This means that a message can be scheduled for a specific, limited time and will no longer be visible to the chat participants at a specified time. It is also possible to assign a PIN.

Recently Telegram announced that they had rewritten their app completely using the programming language Swift, which comes fromApple. This is the version that the iOS version of the messaging app is based on, and for the Android version it uses the developer tool Telegram Database Library.

User numbers:

In March 2018 CEO Pavel Durov announced on the Telegram Blog that the messaging app had over 200 million monthly active users. This puts it safely within the top 10 messaging apps worldwide (not including Apple’s iMessage) according to monly active users, in place 9. The first place is, as one might expect, WhatsApp, with over 1.5 billion monthly active users.


messaging apps brands hub messenger worldwide

World of Messaging Apps: Global Overview


Telegram Messenger: Business Opportunities and Features

The Telegram Messenger has open APIs as well as end-to-end encryption. Companies can offer Telegram customer service with the help of the Messenger Communication Platform. Users also have the possibility to make purchases on Telegram and pay directly in the app. Just like on other messaging apps, businesses can also create chatbots that work on Telegram.

Companies can send Telegram newsletters just like on WhatsApp. MessengerPeople integrated Telegram Messenger into our Widget, as you can see at the end of this article, and successfully offers customer service via Telegram.

Companies and their profiles have a decisive advantage over other messaging apps with Telegram: in the Discover area, Telegram users can search and subscribe to companies with their channel


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3. Best Practice: 3 companies that are successfully using Telegram

Are there already best practices from companies that send Telegram Messenger newsletters? Yes, many companies and organizations already rely on Telegram and have seen great user acceptance. Here are three examples:

1) Wetter Online on Telegram

German weather website Wetter Online offers a weather service via Telegram, which can even be scheduled. This means that not only the location for the weather report can be determined, but also the time. The settings for the weather report can be adjusted at any time. Rich links (news with links to videos or pictures) increase the added value for the user.


2) Urlaubstracker on Telegram

This German travel deals platform successfully relies on the Telegram Messenger to send messages to their users. The deal messages are short, exciting, and use emojis for an informal tone.


3) The Washington Post on Telegram

Telegram-Messenger-Newsletter-Washington-Post

The renowned Washington Post offers its readers the opportunity to discuss recent articles in their Telegram. The user can also read the linked articles via Instant View. With this feature, the article opens across the entire screen in Telegram.

Tip: here you can learn about which other messaging apps are a good alternative to WhatsApp.


Conclusion: Telegram worldwide

It’s clear that in the majority of countries, the two messaging app giants WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger claim most users. However, Telegram is part of a niche group of messaging apps that appeal to users who have a serious interest in encryption and security, and it’s an interesting opportunity for businesses with specific target groups. As data protection becomes more regulated and more talked about, we’ll see what the future holds for Telegram.

The interesting thing about Telegram in terms of user growth is that the app always benefits when WhatsApp has a technical failure, as was the case in March 2019. Telegram gained over 3 million new users within 24 hours, as Pavel Durov announced on his Telegram channel.


Have a great idea for customer service via messaging apps and want to talk about it? Message us!

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