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Ubongo: Edutaining Kids with Whatsapp Business API

Ubongo: Edutaining Kids with Whatsapp Business API

Ubongo, Africa’s leading edutainment company, has appointed cloud communications company Infobip to implement a WhatsApp channel with its latest Answers offering

Challenge

Mitigating Covid-19’s devastating effect on African schools

Ubongo is known as Africa’s Largest Classroom, with a reach of 17 million households on television and radio. They create and deliver educational entertainment via TV, radio and digital to millions of kids across Africa to help them learn and leverage their learning.


Before the pandemic, Africa’s school enrolment rate was above 80%. The rise of Covid-19 had a devastating effect on this rate, with 226 million learners unable to go to school. During this time, Ubongo received an increasing number of requests for more support – especially from parents who faced the challenge of homeschooling their kids.


Increasing showtimes on TV and radio met some of the demand, but it became clear that there was an increasing need for on-demand content and support. Many parents were asking for content to be sent via Whatsapp because it’s data-friendly and available on any smartphone.


Ubongo also wanted their students to delve deeper into their content through a value-adding digital platform, chat apps and social media channels.

Solution

Utilizing Answers for on-demand support

Ubongo recognized an opportunity to engage with its target market via Answers, our customizable chatbot building platform. It met their criteria, being price, ease of use, functionalities available and technical support. By utilizing Whatsapp Business API in combination with Answers, Ubongo could provide always on customer support through the most popular messaging service on the continent and leverage reach and low data costs.


Ubongo could chat with their customers in three different languages, English, Swahili and Hausa. Getting content was as simple as chatting with a friend. All they needed to do was was say ‘Hi’ to to the officieal Ubongo Whatsapp account.


Users were then offered various options, ranging from language options, TV showtimes to videos.

Result

Increased adoption of educational content via Whatsapp, anywhere, anytime


The implementation of Infobip’s Answers solution enabled Ubongo to stay true to its commitment to support kids on their educational journey. Their continued efforts to maintain their reach and serve their market during the pandemic were recognized by the New York Times, Al Jazeera and Reuters.


Through Whatsapp Business API, users could access content on-demand and download it, so it’s available offline.


Within two months since implementation, Ubongo could already see positive results. In what they describe as a first for the company, end-users from different channels can seamlessly and consistently connect into a single digital channel.


Infobip’s solution also enables Ubongo to push content for free downloads directly to their end-users. And for those who still prefer to access Ubongo’s content on conventional platforms like television, users can access a digital TV guide to ensure they don’t miss it.


They can also measure the success of this new strategy thanks to the feedback functionality of the chatbot.

Stephen Boustred
Head of digital products at Ubongo

“We will use the chatbot built by Answers over WhatsApp to encourage smartphone users to essentially be champions of Ubongo and share our content with kids and parents who otherwise wouldn’t have access to it.”