Whereas businesses create content for their blogs and YouTube channels here in the West, in China, it’s all about WeChat. The social network is the country’s “app for everything,” and more than a billion users depend on the platform for messaging, eCommerce, banking, and news. If you’re looking to bolster your presence in the country, investing in a Chinese content marketing strategy is one of the most sensible solutions, allowing you to solidify your market position and reach potential customers. Below, we’ve put together some content writing tips.
Avoid using clickbait in titles
Though it might be tempting to use clickbait when you’re writing articles for your Chinese audience, the truth is that consumers in the territory are increasingly sophisticated and switched on to controversial marketing techniques. Clickbait might increase your article open rates in the short-term, but you’re less likely to build loyalty and trust within the community if you’re making misleading statements or writing content that doesn’t offer genuine value. It’s so easy to create material that positions your brand in the best possible light - work with a local marketing agency that can identify new content opportunities and exploit them for you.
Short and sweet makes sense
The average lifespan of an article is 2-3 days, with each piece published receiving 80% of its lifetime reads in the first 48 hours of publication. Because of this, it’s so important to make your content as impactful as possible to maximise your reach - if you’re too long-winded, people won’t stick around. Whilst there’s certainly value in writing well-researched, long-form content for WeChat in some industries, more often than not, short titles and punchy articles are preferred by your target audience. Keep tiles under 20 words, choose an attractive header image, and hook readers in from the first line - the more engaging it is, the more reads and shares you’ll get.
Think about search engine optimisation
If you’ve already built up an audience on WeChat, most views and reads of your content will come organically through news feeds and shares. However, it’s also important to think about SEO and optimising your content for the WeChat algorithms. Add a few search keywords to your titles and articles to appear on search engine results pages, but don’t let it come at the cost of readability. Don’t forget that you can repurpose your content for other channels, too, whether that’s your company blog or the Chinese question and answer website Zhihu.
Be clear on what you’re trying to achieve
Articles that are direct and straight to the point are more likely to do well than those which are long-winded or difficult to understand. If you’re writing a guide on creating the perfect whisky cocktail, keep it simple: How To Mix a Delicious Whisky Cocktail will do the job just fine. Listicles always work well (X Ways to Wash Your Hair Without A Shower), whilst consumers also value studies and primary research (Our Findings on Chinese Fashion for 2021), whilst adding an “Important Update” tag to a post can also drive more clicks. The chances are that the well-optimised titles you use when creating content for your UK audience will work in China, so have them translated and see how they perform on WeChat.
Speak in their language
It’s all well and good directly translating your content from English to Mandarin, but you must also consider the nuances between the two and understand how your local audience speaks to each other online. Brands in the West are increasingly using colloquial language and embracing memes on social media, whether it’s ‘YAAAAS’, ‘bougie’ or ‘stan’. Identify the words, phrases, and memes your Chinese audience uses in relation to your industry, and speak in their language. If you’re on their wavelength, your content will be more relatable.
Need assistance crafting content for WeChat? Let the team at Zudu China help. Call us on 01382 690080 today to discuss your project and check back soon for more marketing tips.