Nathan Halsey, CEO of Yushop explains Wechat
“With over 1 billion active users, WeChat has become a daily ritual for over 90% of all China mobile users. Although most people around the world think of WeChat as a messaging app or an alternative to WhatsApp but for China, it is far richer in features and uses than just messaging,” explains Nathan Halsey
WeChat has become China’s all-in-one “super app”, providing users similar functions to Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Google, and Instagram, all rolled into one application. Now, with WeChat Pay, users can link a bank card to their account for seamless payment for items like taxis, haircuts, shopping, paying friends, or paying for a meal in a restaurant. Think of VENMO being integrated seamlessly with every western app, preventing you from having to reach for the credit or bank card when wanting to purchase something online.
According to Nathan Halsey there are “over 600 million WeChat Pay accounts that are active with restaurants, clothing stores, and street food vendors, and they use QR codes to replace cash and bank cards. Handheld machines once used for swiping cards now come equipped with a barcode and QR code scanner.”
For the user, even smartwatches can display the WeChat personal QR code, allowing payments to happen from the simple flick of a wrist. Digital payment by WeChat has become far more popular than other digital currencies (such as bitcoin), causing a shift in financial behaviors as the Chinese surge from a cash and bank card society to dependence upon personalized QR codes.
According to Nathan Halsey: Here are 5 reasons why it is crucial to include WeChat as a part of your China strategy in China:
Digital payments with WeChat enabled nearly $4 trillion in digital payments last year!
1. There are are more than 1 billion monthly users
A monthly user base of more than 1 billion people makes WeChat the perfect platform to help brands connect with the Chinese market. Its demographic is young urban residents who typically make the most online purchases, are the most internet-savvy, and have an increasing level of disposable income. Simply put, WeChat is where your consumer spends a good part of their day. It’s where they are when you want to reach them.
2. There is not a single app that offers a better way to present content to a targeted audience in one place
Getting your content in front of the right people is the first step, so WeChat gives you the chance to create content and target it to specific consumers who subscribe to your brand, based on their browsing history or location. WeChat offers two different account types for businesses: Subscription or Service.
A subscription allows you to push regular content and notifications which are displayed in a sub-section for users who subscribe to your account.
The Service option is more advanced, and your content will reach your subscribers’ main ‘Moments’ feed (similar to the Newsfeed feature on Facebook or Instagram). However, you are limited to one (1) article pushed per week (maximum of 4 per month).
Attracting users to subscribe to your account is essential for success, so many businesses offer exclusive WeChat special offers just for their subscribers. There is a much stronger culture of sharing posts in China, so producing the right content will lead to greater rewards than on similar social platforms.
3. Direct contact with consumers and 2-way communication
One of WeChat’s most interesting features is its ability to allow followers and brands to have a direct channel of communication. This type of personalized interaction is similar to Facebook’s chat feature, allowing the brand to have a personalized and direct communication channel with the consumer. However, WeChat’s analytics and data collection for further marketing are second-to-none.
When it comes to data analysis and metrics there is a wealth of information to draw on to improve your marketing strategy with customer insights, traffic figures, click-through rates, and impressions.
4. Offline to online leads convert more easily
WeChat allows brands to set up a digital ‘Micro Store’ so that users can browse products within WeChat and easily make purchases in just a few clicks. Online shopping doesn’t get much easier than WeChat, especially considering you can integrate the WeChat Pay feature with just about any online storefront, making the ability for the consumer to check-out and pay as simple as a single click.
Display and print advertising is still very popular in China, especially when used in transportation hubs such as subways and train stations. WeChat provides you the ability to put your store’s QR code in print format, giving the consumer the ability to scan the code displayed in the ad and immediately pulling up your storefront on their phone. In fact, you can create hundreds (thousands actually) of unique marketing QR codes in WeChat so you can identify exactly where the customer saw your ad or storefront offline.
5. Seamless integration with paid traffic sources
Similar to Facebook, WeChat offers the ability to run paid ads to a targeted audience. Since the ads are in WeChat, the users do not have to leave WeChat to view your content or storefront (assuming you have a WeChat store). This integration makes for a super-efficient and seamless experience for the user and provides valuable user data to the brand or ad owner that can be used for future retargeting to prospects. Other Chinese Apps, such as Douyin (China Tik Tok) also provide seamless integration abilities to run paid traffic ads to prospects on their platform while easily bringing them into your OA account or storefront in WeChat.
About Nathan Halsey.
Nathan Halsey is the CEO of YuShop Global, the developer of the first Social Selling Cross-Border E-Commerce Marketplace built entirely inside the WeChat ecosystem. YuShop Global makes selling to Chinese consumers as simple as running Facebook Ads, providing international brands a turn-key solution for entering the China consumer market.
For more information on YuShop Global, visit https://www.yushopglobal.com
Disclaimer: The publication of this article on the priceofbusiness.com platform in no way should be considered an endorsement or otherwise of any goods or services or otherwise or of anyone mentioned or linked to in this article.