If you want to promote your products and services in China, WeChat is the way to go. The country’s “app for everything” is used by more than one billion monthly users, many of whom have credit cards attached to their accounts and are ready to buy from businesses like yours.
But how can you promote your business and become a brand that Chinese consumers want to buy from and interact with? Below, we’ve put together five of the most effective WeChat marketing techniques that you need to consider when expanding your business in the country.
Focus on relevant, engaging content
WeChat is first and foremost a messaging and content sharing app, so creating content that serves a purpose and provides value will help you grow an audience.
It’s fun to play around with things like GIFs and memes, but your primary focus should be on creating high-quality material that positions your brand as a key player in the market to encourage sales.
WeChat content has a lifespan of just a couple of days, so first impressions count.
As well as taking the time to craft truly original content, you must focus on the visual appeal and packaging.
Your article’s cover image or header should be a top priority, and you should test your header image to ensure it looks good in push notifications, in a sharing chat window, and in searches.
And be consistent, using the same filters and graphics to solidify your branding.
Use location-based marketing
WeChat Service Accounts detect the location of users, making them great for location-based marketing.
If you run a restaurant, for example, you could alert followers to lunchtime specials when they’re close by, or allow users to order food and have it ready by the time they arrive.
The messaging app also makes it easy to turn followers into customers, as you can launch a loyalty programme using geo-location services.
You could send a VIP card through the WeChat app, offer exclusive promotions, or give away e-coupons that can be used in-store and online.
Get creative with QR codes
Whilst QR codes may have been short-lived in the Western world, they’re an everyday essential in China, with the average consumer using 10 to 15 QR codes a day.
Accounts on WeChat are automatically assigned a unique QR code, and you can use these in your marketing materials to encourage more customers to engage with your brand, share content and buy your products.
For example, a supermarket in Korea created a three-dimensional QR sign that only worked at lunchtime, when the sun was is at its zenith, taking users to its official WeChat account.
This short-term tactic generated great PR for the brand, and reportedly increased sales by 25%.
There are lots of ways that you can get creative with QR codes.
Include them in your Chinese marketing in videos, create stickers featuring your code, or customise and decorate your QR code using colours, images and logos to spark intrigue and increase your follower count.
Today, there is more content on WeChat than ever before, and so if you want to stand out and get people to read about your brand, you have to go the extra mile.
One brand that has taken this to the next level is BuzzFeed, which allows readers to select the types of content they’d like to receive.
The company created its own mini-program giving users access to custom content based on their interests and chosen keywords.
Through this, BuzzFeed fans can find shareable posts they can pass on to friends through chats and Moments, expanding the brand’s reach.
It’s easy - and relatively inexpensive - to create your own WeChat mini-program that offers similar functionality, but remember you’ll first need to build a pool of content that can be shared.
Create video content
One type of content that’s booming on social networks around the world is video - and WeChat is no exception.
According to one report, video content is twice as popular as regular content on the platform, with brands like Coca-Cola and Unilever creating their own viral content that users want to share and interact with.
The more engaging video content you can create, the better.
The truth is that video is expensive, but as WeChat becomes increasingly competitive and more Western brands enter the market, you should make the investment if you want to keep your followers engaged.
Rather than working with a video production company, you could create short videos where you show off products, utilise user-generated content from satisfied customers, and share content from third parties to ensure a consistent flow of fresh material.
WeChat is China’s most powerful marketing tool, but you need to work hard if you want to grow an audience, promote your brand and generate sales. Remember that there are 14 million other businesses on WeChat, so if you don’t offer something truly unique and valuable, consumers will simply look elsewhere.
At Zudu China, we can unlock your brand’s potential through WeChat and market your products and services to millions. Find out more on our website, or call us on +44 (0)1382 690 080 today.