Activate WhatsApp for ALICE Guest Messaging

Properties that have purchased ALICE Guest Messaging and wish to use WhatsApp within the ALICE Platform must complete the following WhatsApp setup as required by the third-party providers, Facebook and Twilio, in alignment with their terms and conditions for WhatsApp for Business.

Setup and activation of WhatsApp can between 6-8 weeks to complete as it requires the third-party providers to review requests.

User Type & Roles

The setup and activation of WhatsApp in ALICE does not require ALICE user permissions but rather, needs to have access to the property's Facebook Business Manager account. We recommend this person also be an ALICE Property Champion.

Things to Consider

Twilio considers a WhatsApp number to be inactive if it has not sent at least 1 delivered message in the past 60 days.

Twilio will deactivate all inactive WhatsApp numbers hosted by Twilio starting on May 1, 2022. Deactivated numbers can’t send or receive WhatsApp messages, and must be reconnected by Twilio to resume messaging using the Twilio API for the WhatsApp Business Platform.

  • A Facebook Business Manager Account is required for the setup of WhatsApp for Business. If you do not have a Facebook Business Manager account, create one for free at http://business.facebook.com . Note: A Facebook Business Manager account is different from a Facebook Page.

  • No Promotional/Marketing Content - WhatsApp for Business is intended to provide customer service rather than a promotional or marketing channel. WhatsApp will not approve any WhatsApp templates that have promotional or marketing content. 

  • Opt-In/Opt-Out Management - WhatsApp requires businesses that intend to initiate a conversation with customers to receive an explicit opt-in message. Learn more here.

  • Logging in to WhatsApp - Once a WhatsApp number is registered with WhatsApp for Business through an integrated partner, it cannot be used to log into other WhatsApp applications. 

  • ALICE offering of WhatsApp is limited to ALICE Guest Messaging -ALICE Desktop (web) and not yet available on ALICE Mobile.) 

  • Blocked by A Customer - WhatsApp does not inform businesses to know if a customer has blocked the business. They have made this intentionally ambiguous to protect the customer’s privacy. (reference)

  • Uploading a Logo to Your WhatsApp Account - If you would like to add your brand logo to your WhatsApp account, please work with your ALICE representative so ALICE can submit a request on your behalf. You can find logo requirements for WhatsApp here

  • Creating a Link to Chat with Your WhatsApp Number - You can create a link for your guests to start chatting with you via WhatsApp by using the format: wa.me/[Your WhatsApp Number]. You can also create QR codes embedding this link to let your customers know how to reach you. 

  • Cannabis or CBD-Related Messaging - Twilio’s Messaging Policy forbids sending messages about anything that is illegal in the jurisdiction where the message recipient lives. This policy affects messaging related to cannabis (marijuana) and cannabidiol (CBD) in the United States, as well as many other countries. Learn more here.

Steps

  1. Locate the Facebook Business Manager ID.

  2. Provide the property Facebook Business Manager ID to ALICE. ALICE will use this information to submit a WhatsApp for Business account on your behalf. The approval process can take up to 2 weeks. Once approved, ALICE will send the property the WhatsApp Terms of Service.

  3. Complete and return the WhatsApp Terms of Service. ALICE will create a WhatsApp sender profile on your behalf. This is when WhatsApp will create a dedicated number for your business. The sender profile typically takes 3-5 days to be approved. You will receive a request from Twilio to message on your behalf in the Facebook Business Manager account.

  4. Approve Twilio’s request in Facebook Business Manager.

  5. Complete the Facebook Business Verification. Once submitted, it can take between 2-4 weeks to process. Learn more here.

  6. Apply for a WhatsApp Official Business account (optional), which will display a “Verified Account Badge” and the property name instead of a phone number when contacting a guest. This step will also help cut down on SPAM reporting/blocking suggestions by WhatsApp as the property becomes a known sender.

WhatsApp conversations in ALICE can only be initiated by the property by sending an approved WhatsApp template.

Responding to guests within 24 hours via WhatsApp does not require WhatsApp templates to be used.

Work with your ALICE representative to set up templates as needed. The approval process for templates can take up to 2 weeks.