When snorkeling enthusiast Marcia Stephanie saw a friend’s underwater pictures of a whale shark, she knew it was time to experience the ocean’s abundant beauty by taking up diving.
Over the years, her hobby grew into a calling and in 2016, Marcia — originally from Jakarta — moved to the small harbor town of Labuan Bajo in central Indonesia. Two years later, she launched iDive Komodo, a diving business which operates in Komodo National Park, one of Indonesia’s premier diving spots.
As iDive Komodo grew, Marcia needed a reliable way to coordinate with her 20 employees who operate two diving boats, and communicate with local and foreign customers from the United States, Japan and Switzerland. Using the WhatsApp Business app since April 2018, Marcia says it has helped streamline customer inquiries and boost her business. Today, 85 percent of potential customers who connect with iDive via the app book a diving trip.
“We feature a direct contact function on our website and social media so prospective clients don’t have to save our number on their phones. This is how I get a lot of inquiries via WhatsApp Business,” explains Marcia.
The away messages feature allows iDive Komodo to respond to inquiries, regardless of whether Marcia is offline diving or busy juggling business demands. The app’s business profile feature, she adds, easily routes customers to her shop’s location, hours of operation and to iDive’s website for more information about its offerings.
“I contacted iDive through a direct WhatsApp link online and they replied quickly. I then called them via WhatsApp. All of my communication with the shop, until I finally made it to Labuan Bajo, took place via WhatsApp. In fact, we are still communicating on the app as they are sending me pictures of my dive trip,” says a customer from Jakarta.
With her diving business growing steadily, Marcia is working on a new luxury live-aboard boating project. She says running another business which requires just as much seamless coordination as her first seems possible because of the WhatsApp Business app.
But that can wait for today. There’s a vast ocean to explore first.