Internet access and smartphones turned a lot of people into Online shoppers. In China, digitalization and social media have enhanced a lot this trend. Chinese people are willing to spend a lot of time online, even more than the people in the U.S. There are so many users on mobile in China that makes it easier for entrepreneurs to build new apps or channels serving consumers and small businesses. This is more efficient than anything that could be developed offline.

If you have decided that the Chinese market is right for you, you need now to prepare your app to be delivered the right way for this market.

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Use the Chinese language

Chinese people are language sensitive so having a successful app in English only is nearly impossible. Not only for app, it is the same for your website. It is better to use a Chinese website to attract more consumers’ attention and gain exposure online in China. In fact, they are more accustomed with Chinese language because even English courses are compulsory at school, a lot of Chinese don’t practice it or have the need to use it in their country.

You should consider not only translation of marketing material such as the App name & description, but also translation of the App interface itself and audio if needed.

Meet local preferences

In your pre-download marketing campaign, your screenshots should address local preferences and at the very least be in Chinese. It would be a huge wasted opportunity to leave them in the original language, providing your already used marketing assets.

Consider the local economics of promotion and discovery

The AppStore or Google Play requires many downloads to be featured (and considerable marketing efforts), things are somewhat different for the Chinese Android markets. How will users find your app ?

Many of the stores have packages of pay per download (PPD) or payment for being featured in the store for a certain time. It all costs money but the nice thing is that you can boost your downloads in a relatively short amount of time and quickly generate a user base. Take advantage of this option only if needed, but make sure you leave some marketing budget for it as it may be necessary.

Otherwise, you can also increase your app awareness and SEO online. Check our articles on Baidu SEO to discover that or contact us directly.

Explore alternative business model

Give some serious thought to your App’s business model, as people in China are very reluctant to pay for Apps. It’s a fact. Paid Apps are therefore not as common on the market (and for those apps that are paid, free pirated versions on the hundreds of independent app stores are quick to crop up).

Instead, what works best are Apps which drive revenue through In-App-Purchases or Advertising, as these are forms of paying for games and content that the China market has already built a tolerance for over the web and offline. Xiaohongshu, Douyin, QQ or Changba, all these well-known and successful apps in China are running in this way.

Leverage social media

There are very few Apps these days that are not connected to external services or social networks of some sort. Facebook, Twitter and Google+ are all used in the West, but China has its own unique set of social networks and services, such as Renren, Weibo and WeChat.

·      Wechat : the first social media app in China

The most used Chinese app for communication. WeChat has become a powerful marketing tool as well for individual entrepreneur as international companies. You can create your brand’s account on WeChat to keep in touch with your Chinese target consumers. A WeChat official account is a kind micro-website, where you can post news, put your contact information, create an event, even open a WeChat Store for selling. What makes WeChat better than any other social media platform is that when you put new things, there is an alert on the main page of WeChat. Every person that followed your account will be noticed. In addition, everyone in China use WeChat daily. It’s the must have APP here.

·      Weibo: most popular chinese miccroblogging website

Weibo is also a popular social media platform, as of Q1 2018, it has over 650 million monthly active users. It is sure far from WeChat’s 1 billion MAU but they are used differently. Whereas on WeChat, you have to let users follow you first if you want them read your contents, on Weibo it’s more open, anyone can see your account and your activity. Weibo is used to increase a brand’s awareness and visibility online.

Leverage kOLs and celebrities

KOLs or Key opinion leaders
can be very effective to promote your app among Chinese consumers. For example, the trendiest app in China Douyin, has began its promotion by leveraging Chinese stars. There was a popular music show called “The rap of China” and Douyin asked to rappers from the emission to present the app and make video on it to attract more audience. In parallel to this widespread marketing, Douyin also asks for social media personality to enter in its platform and create their video. They can in that way attract their followers from another app to your app.

Find a local partner

You need to find a good local partner. It’s important to have knowledge and local relationships to do business in China. When it comes to market, to advertise, you need to know what’s your consumer’s behavior and what’s the Chinese customer journey map. Our agency has developed a lot of successful projects, being up to date with the latest trends and digital marketing tools on the Chinese market.

We are digital marketing agency in China. We can help you to increase your brand awareness, to establish your business in China. Do not hesitate to contact our agency for more information. Our 500+ Case studies 

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