WeChat guide for marketers
Wechat is offering numerous functions for business use; in fact the ecosystem of this platform is so well established that brands choose to create campaigns solely focused on it. In this article, we will discover 10 methods to interact with a brand’s audience through WeChat.
A brand has the option to choose between subscription or service accounts. Putting the functional differences aside, official accounts are a direct communication channel to the followers of the brand. Sharing content and pushing notifications are vital for establishing conversation and promoting the brand’s agenda. Furthermore, the flexibility of customizing the menu of the official account gives brands a powerful tool for additional options to be available to users.
In WeChat, the core sharing function between users is called “Moments”. It is an indirect channel of communication where relevant content is shared between users. In order to benefit from this channel brands should create content that is interesting, beneficial and relevant to their target audience in order to maximize the spread potential.
QR code scan
This function has simplified the connection between online and offline marketing. Through the use of QR codes, connecting your offline audience with your online presence has become simple and necessary. The QR code can support an ongoing campaign by connecting fans with the official brand account, providing perks after purchase of products and so on. QR codes can be put offline or online.
A website inside WeChat. HTML5 pages, able to contain interactive design, deliver the brand’s message to the target audience in an engaging manner. Through the support of the “moments” function, content that is relevant to the audience is easily sharable between groups of friends making HTML5 pages a powerful broadcasting tool.
WeChat has a search function which can be used to find brands and content inside the Wechat universe. Even though the search function is basic, with simple SEO techniques brands can be confident the user will find their official accounts and the content they share.
In order to capture the audience’s attention brands are able to develop games that are operated inside the platform. After negotiating with WeChat, a brand focused game can be made available to users for download and play.
Money – payments
In the Chinese region WeChat supports a link between the user’s bank card and the platform. Not only transferring money between users, which is fast and easy, but also purchasing of products is accommodated. Providing a convenient way for users to reach the brand’s product is essential in order to take advantage of this function. Online purchases are probably the last step to complete a Wechat marketing campaign, and are possible without external platform support.
Coupons are a great support feature for campaigns; brands can either supply them after the user completes an objective/game or randomly distribute them. The coupons could increase product purchases as well as the interaction of the target audience with the campaign.
Similarly to the previous point, the location feature can be incorporated inside a HTML5 or game. Through the location of the user, push notifications can be sent to inform the user of nearby stores, rewards, or objectives.
WeChat supports a shake-your-phone feature. This feature by itself is not an exploitable channel for brand communication. However, incorporated in a HTML5 or a game inside the WeChat universe, it can add engagement and excitement to the user experience. One example is brands requiring fans to “Shake” their phones at specific times to win prizes or to connect with VIP accounts.
Let’s have a look at a few of these features being used in marketing campaigns:
- Lipton partnering with Hello Kitty released a HTML5 file through its official account. The user while browsing the HTML5 was asked to shake their phone to have a chance to win a variety of gifts and coupons.
- Magnum for the last 3 summers has been launching a temporary offline store with custom made ice creams. Through the use of QR codes from the offline site it connected their audience with the online campaign that provided additional options for fans, including making appointments to reduce queue time and connecting with the campaign’s KOLs.
These campaigns were supported by Reloadbuzz digital advertising agency.
About the Author
Christos Bamplekos, Strategy planner at Reloadbuzz Digital marketing agency
Chris came to China in September 2012 to obtain his Masters degree at Hult University in Shanghai. A year of business learning and a few job positions later, he joined Reloadbuzz, a young and dynamic digital marketing agency where for the last 5 months he has been venturing on the Chinese consumer behavior and campaign planning process.