WhatsApp is not just about KPIs, ROIs and RPRS. For luxury watch brand Venezianico, it's the intangible results of brand building, easy communication with customers and staying top of mind (along with some nice numbers).

Venezianico - CEO

Alberto Morelli, CEO, Venezianico


higher AOV on WhatsApp than website


open rate for WhatsApp campaigns


revenue per recipient from first WhatsApp campaign

"Thanks to charles, we're always in touch with our customers. So when they need a new watch, they think of us."
Roberto Nespolo, Head of Sales, Venezianico

edit Challenge: lack of functionality with basic WhatsApp Business

Venezianico is a small watch brand that successfully competes with much more established watch companies like Tissot and Balenciaga. 


How? Because of its focus not only on quality, but community. 


“Most brands in our business are still really old school in their marketing,” says Roberto Nespolo, Head of Sales.


"They spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on online campaigns, but it’s still difficult for them to keep customers. If you buy from one of these brands, you have to deal with an official retailer and you don’t speak with the owner of the shop, but the shop assistant. Then, if something breaks, you have to send to the support center in Switzerland and wait weeks to get your watch back. 


“Customers spending this amount of money don’t appreciate the distance they have from the brand, but this is the way most watch brands work.”


Out with the old, in with the bold

Venezianico saw the opportunity to stand out with a more modern approach and get even closer to its customers. Mailchimp was its only platform for lead generation. It now wanted to experiment with getting closer to customers on WhatsApp. 


As Roberto explains: “We were already using WhatsApp Business, but it was basically just a chat, used with website visitors and in email marketing campaigns. Of course this is very useful, but we wanted it to do more to build loyalty with our fans.”


Additionally, it wanted to scale WhatsApp Business more than it could with the basic version – to send campaigns to thousands of people and have additional data, a more analytical approach. 

chart-network Goal: stay top of mind with WhatsApp

The goals were to roll out charles for the Italian market first to prove its value, with these goals in mind: 

    > Have a viable alternative to Mailchimp
    > Reach a higher % of its current audience
    > Increase revenue through increased returning customer rate, conversion rate, and average order value (AOV)


"We decided to begin with Italy because there are so many WhatsApp users," says Roberto, "99 people out of 100 have WhatsApp. Even my grandma has it. Also of course Italy is our most important market."


Nurturing what you already have

Roberto says, "Our competitors tend to try and reach new customers using traditional channels. They simply release a new watch design because they want to reach a new audience, a new type of customer.


"But they can't always reach the fanbase they already have. This is what we wanted to do with charles.

"We’re aware of the fact that 25-30% of our customers will order a new watch within next the next 6-7 months. And even if they don’t, it’s not a problem, the most important thing is that they keep in touch with the brand – which is something WhatsApp is brilliant for.


"Maybe they don’t order more watches, but keeping continuous contact with brand will keep us top of mind."

Implementation Technology: full commerce suite

Venezianico subscribed to charles’ web-based WhatsApp Business platform, with the products: Campaigns for sales, Commerce for marketing, Conversations to manage chats and Chat-ins to get people into WhatsApp from the website.


It now has an invitation to join its club on WhatsApp on its thank you page after a purchase (no popups or chat bubbles at first). It took this low-key approach to start with as it already had a strong, loyal customer base on WhatsApp. It also knew that once someone had bought, there was a strong likelihood they'd buy again. charles was able to import all these numbers into the tool and add any new subscribers, combining them all into one database.


During the kick-off call, Venezianico shared information about the business, its customers, and its expectations of charles. 


The WhatsApp integration went smoothly and the team quickly learned how to use the tool during product training. Go-live was June 2022.

route Results: engaged community of watch fans

Venezianico quickly proved the value of WhatsApp as a channel. Open and conversion rates skyrocketed: with an average open rate of 90% since go-live. 


It generated €14.4k in revenue through Chatouts and its first product launch campaign enjoyed a revenue per send out of €21.


The company has had 25k conversations in 6 months, with around 50k messages exchanges, showing how engaged the community is.


"Our audience is really increasing a lot," says Roberto. "We've been investing quite a bit in enlarging our current audience of customers – with online campaigns, facebook ads and google advertising, trade shows, on- and offline magazines.


"But it's worth it because charles is there to keep this fanbase very loyal."


Presales become actual sales

According to Roberto, "We're finding that the people on charles are very addicted and contact us very often.


"In the last product release, we generated many sales through WhatsApp, even before the release date. Our audience was afraid to miss out and were asking to pay before the release! Which, thanks to charles, they could: we would simply activate the product online and make it available for those customers.


"Then, with the charles Commerce tool tool, we could send a prefilled cart – a "Chatout" – to make it easy to purchase directly from a WhatsApp conversation."


Shaping the future of product launches

Together with charles Success Manager, Antonio Lavia, Venezianico recorded key learnings from its WhatsApp activities in a "Product Launch Playbook," that includes key methods Venezianico uses to increase conversations.


Venezianico is now so confident in the potential of WhatsApp that it wants to expand WhatsApp operations for its international stores, in the US and other European countries.


And Roberto says, "We’re also going to expand to have more dedicated support for community management."


A helping hand from charles

As well as the software, Roberto is very happy with the service he gets from charles: "Antonio is super! He always gives us a lot of suggestions and is there for us straight away if we encounter any issues. We really appreciate this. He also pushes us to do more with our campaigns.


"All this support is helping us get more and more used to the instrument."

stars Venezianico can now:

Grow its WhatsApp audience

Venezianico 1-4

After a purchase, a thank you page “Chat-in” suggests keeping in touch with the brand and joining the Venezianico watch club on WhatsApp.

Keep existing contacts

Venezianico 2

The company already had customers who were contacting it on WhatsApp. With a “contact import” it was able to move them quickly into the new channel.

Develop products with customers

Venezianico 4-2

Customers share feedback through the channel, directly to Venezianico's CEO and this informs how future products are designed. This also invests customers in the products so they're more likely to buy when launched.

💛35 What's next?


Expand charles rollout to US and other European countries


Use checkout page opt-in to grow WhatsApp audience


Add more "Chat-ins" like popups (when mobile app is ready)

After the clear initial success with WhatsApp, Venezianico aims to scale towards end-to-end usage of WhatsApp for all its markets.

Venezianico is a brand with a heart and passion for what it does. It looks beyond the numbers to an exciting future with its loyal customers on board for the long-term.

Roberto says, "I really think there are no charles campaign with zero results. Even if you don’t generate one sale with the campaign, you’re doing something important for your next product release. We're a brand, we’re not a marketplace. So many online marketplaces send newsletters every day. Buy this watch now! Sale! Sale! Maybe at the beginning you’re interested, but after a week or so, you're not anymore.

"We're doing it differently. We take a slower but more successful approach, building a brand and letting customers feel part of the journey. Thanks to charles, this is all possible."

Antonio Lavia charles

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