A digital presence is a must for any company wishing to develop its reputation and brand image. From the integration of digital technology with the Chinese population to the emergence of new forms of promotions for brands, digital marketing is fast becoming the only way to market your company or brand within China.
Digital platforms have become an integral part of the lives of individuals in China. WeChat, which is the largest social network in China, currently has more than 900 million users. Needless to say this makes Wechat a huge necessity for brands to make themselves visible and connect with their target market.
In this article, we will introduce you to several brands that have successfully implemented their digital communication strategy on Wechat.
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WeChat is an integrated ecosystem
The WeChat mobile application was created in 2011 by the company Tencent. It is a free instant messaging app that also has many other functions (including Wechat pay, Wechat stores, content sharing, etc), which has led it to become a social network that is completely integrated into the daily lives of many Chinese citizens.
The application is often nicknamed “The WeChat Times” because it is very often used for news and as a source of information by its users.
WeChat is more than just an application, it is an entire ecosystem with significant growth and sales potential for any company wishing to expand its business in China.
5 Successful Marketing Campaigns on the App
Givenchy has utilized the services of one of the most influential influencers, otherwise known as Key Opinion Leaders (KOL) of the country to promote a limited edition handbag. Tao Liang, known on the web under the name of Mr Bags, has an audience of 1.2 million followers on WeChat. Using a KOL with so many followers proved a great way for the brand to achieve a relevant, fashion-oriented community.
This association between the brand and the KOL involved Tao Liang publishing a post on his Wechat referring to the partnership with Givenchy and the promotion of 80 handbags in limited edition sold for 15,000 RMB per bag.
Givenchy has taken advantage of the codes of digital and luxury marketing to offer its consumers a coherent offer to their consumption habits. Indeed, luxury shows an image of prestige and exclusivity that can be found in the promotion of a limited edition. The use of WeChat as a means of promotion is a relevant strategy by the company in view of the digital tendency of its followers.
In addition, the company decided to launch the marketing of these bags a few days before Valentine’s Day. The Chinese are generally known for the importance of offering gifts at important events. This choice as to the launch date is even more judicious.
This proved to be a highly successful strategy for the brand since, as in just 12 minutes, the entire collection was sold. This positive buzz has also enabled the brand to strengthen the brand’s sense of belonging and increase its brand image.
The luxury brand decided to use Wechat for the promotion of its collection of style. In the past, Montblanc had already used the platform for the promotion of its Moon phase as a means of communication and had been very successful.
This marketing campaign was divided into two parts:
The first was to raise awareness of the history of the brand. This approach is often used in the luxury sector. The storytelling allows consumers to retrace and become familiar with the history and the products and gain a thorough understanding of why it is considered a luxury brand.
For his campaign, Montblanc, used a famous personality, who is none other than Hugh Jackman, to tell the story of the brand.
By connecting to the app, users could see a letter written in Chinese characters reading “Art cannot change the world, but it can change the way people think – and people can change the world.”
The second part of the campaign focused on the ability to engage the consumer in the brand experience. The user had the opportunity to customize his Montblanc pen by choosing the color he preferred. The color finally chosen, the individual had the possibility to share his creation on WeChat.
The brand positioned this particular campaign over the Chinese New Year period to achieve maximum success.
This campaign featured two H5 games. One which allowed the player to send fireworks to wish the new year to his entourage and the other, to play a small game symbolized by a rooster, the Chinese sign associated in this year of 2017.
The creativity and simplicity of the campaign allowed users to share with their loved ones during this event. Moreover, the fact of having created a mini game for Internet users was a relevant idea of the mark. Indeed, the Chinese are big consumers of video games, especially on mobile.
Damac Properties, founded in 2002, is a real estate development company located in the Middle East and Dubai. The agency is committed to providing its clients with unique living concepts as well as dream homes.
The campaign was essentially based on the presentation of the entire company. DAMAC proposed a welcome page of its account on WeChat while sobriety taking up the codes of the brand, it also released conten through stylish H5 pages to keep its customers informed.
The results for the company were very promising:
Average views 1200+ and 80+ “likes”
3,000 followers within 6 months
Prospective new customers
High conversion ra
Twist & Drink
Twist & Drink is a beverage brand for children which was created in Austria in 1973. The beverages are all made from natural spring water from the mountains. A wide range of fruity tastes is offered to consumers. The bottles of the brand are distinguished by their bright colors and the design of the bottle.
The brand positioned itself on social networks such as WeChat for the promotion of its products. Indeed, it created a colorful and animated world within the application in reference to its products and reflecting the colorful appearance of the bottles. To appeal to children, the bottles became mascots. Each bottle had its own characteristics and personality that allowed the children to recognize themselves in one of the mascots.
Regarding its marketing campaign on WeChat, the brand initially launched a game on the application. The game was based on the different characters where the users would compete to collect the most points in the Twist & Drink arena.
Also in the application, the subscribers i.e the parents could access the online store of the brand to buy the products directly. A contest had also been launched with the physical bottles, allowing consumers to win prizes if the bottle top was winning.
In terms of results:
Average of 600 views and 40+ “I like”
+ 3600 followers in 6 months of campaign
250 000 participants in the WeChat Game
More than 20% of followers participated in a special marketing campaign
These various successful marketing campaigns show the interest for foreign companies to launch the promotion of their brand via the digital platforms of China. The digital channel in the country is too important to flaunt your strategy and campaign.
The digital ecosystem, as well as consumer shopping habits are completely different to those of Western countries. It is crucial to have a thorough understanding of these habits in order to market a business or brand successfully in China. It is advisable for you to set up a partnership with a local business who understand the workings of the Chinese digital sphere to develop your strategy sucesfully.
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