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Increasing Your WeChat Following Online Update

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There are now over 500 million users on WeChat, the platform has become the integral site facilitating social interaction in China and presents a major opportunity for savy marketers. The key for any brand looking to boost their presence in China is to increase their WeChat following, users on the platform can only see posts by those they are connected; promotional efforts are thus wasted without a substantial following.

Here are some ways to increase your WeChat following:

Create attractive content

The Chinese particularly trust content shared by their immediate social circle so disseminating content that engages users and which can be shared is of vital importance. Content needs to be engaging, short and highly interesting. Humour can be used very effectively with slapstick style comedy in China being popular. Avoid creating content that is too lengthy, too many words detracts from the immediacy whilst striking visual or video content is the most effective.

Protech create glossy, attractive content for luxury car lovers, check their WeChat to see or scan their QR code. Ben 1

Offer exclusive content, promotions and discounts to subscribers

Offering exclusive promotional offers can be effective, the Chinese are often conscious of cost and value for money so promoting these type of offers exclusively to followers can be a strong incentive. Don’t just repeatedly promote the same discounts, keep changing the promotional offerings so they are fresh for the consumer, the benefits will likely be shared via word of mouth and lead directly to more followers.

Promotions and discounts should extend beyond the single user and also include their friends or family, this can be a useful way to attract more followers. Subscribers are then more likely to recommend your WeChat account to their social circle.

Burberry for example announced a partnership with WeChat, for a brand event in Shanghai the company allowed users of the mobile messaging service to unlock interactive content before and after the show if they had subscribed to Burberry’s account.

Organize games

There are a number of games on WeChat which are available worldwide. The ‘Game Centre’ is located next to the ‘Discover’ tab in the messaging service. Inviting users to play group games such as ‘Gunz Dash’ or ‘2Days Match’ can be effective with users competing and comparing their scores. Making full use of its location-based services, WeChat players can also search for other players nearby to find opponents, this could be a different way to attract users to your page if they are invited for the purposes of playing an organized game. Organizing group games with ‘prizes’ for the winners may incentivize more people to follow and engage with your brand.Ben 2

Target Communities

WeChat conversation groups represent a significant opportunity to target certain communities and demographics, identify these groups and create user accounts which can then be invited into the group chats. By engaging in conversations you can reach certain types of people with specific interests. It is important to tailor and adapt your marketing style in these groups. Engage in authentic user to user conversation and subtly reference the brand. WeChat groups are very active sites for interaction and to be fully utilized one will need to employ a native Chinese speaker to converse authentically.

Incentive Sharing

This is a growing opportunity with users being paid to share posts as their ‘moments’ (akin to a status update on Facebook). As mentioned before this is especially effective as the Chinese are particularly influenced by the comments and preferences of their social circle. Certain demographics can be targeted in this way through individuals sharing your content amongst their social network.

Utilize Key Opinion Leaders

KOL’s or key opinion leaders are key in China. These people are highly popular on social networks and are considered experts in particular subjects. They have attracted a large community of people around them whom are influenced by their views and opinions. Your brand can recruit a KOL to post positive content helping you reach thousands if not millions of potential consumers.

Promote on other platforms

Promote your WeChat on other Chinese social networking platforms such as Weibo, Q Zone or Renren, a comprehensive digital strategy involves engaging effectively with the broad range of domestic social media outlets that have emerged in China. Weibo is a much more ‘open’ social network than WeChat as you don’t have to be connected to see other users posts. Cross promotion on these other networks is therefore key.

Benji has lived in Shanghai, China for five years and specializes in digital marketing and social networking in the aptly named mysterious orient. For more information see his blog/website.

Image Credits: convinceandconvert, massplanner, dutimes, darpanmagazine, leonardo, fox6now

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