Having a WeChat Official Account for your brand is a powerful marketing avenue to win the Chinese market. Not only it allows content sharing with your consumers, but it also enables other functions that cover all stages in the buyer’s journey. Also, being entitled to WeChat Official Account features gives you a competitive edge against your competitors.
Coined as a ‘super app’, WeChat offers many solutions to your marketing needs. From building brand awareness to driving website traffic or sales, it provides valuable services to both consumers and businesses. This includes WeChat Official Account, WeChat Pay, WeChat mini program, and more.
Statistically speaking, the Tencent-owned app has seen incredible spikes over the years, particularly its user base. From 50 million in 2012, it tremendously grew to 1.17 billion monthly active users in Q1 2020. Moreover, in 2019, 45 billion messages are sent daily within the app, showing its high user engagement.
With this in mind, having a solid WeChat marketing strategy is an essential step to conquering the market. And since there are plenty of ways to harness WeChat marketing, it’s important that you learn the basics one at a time. Surely, grasping this China digital marketing strategy will improve your brand. However, it can be overwhelming to know everything at once.
So, in this article, we’ll learn the first step in the long and rewarding WeChat marketing journey – setting up a WeChat Official Account.
What is a WeChat Official Account?
WeChat Official Account (OA) is much like your verified Facebook or Instagram business page with a badge. Visually, you’ll know an account is verified if you see an orange tick mark beside the page name.
Users can easily view, manage, and add official accounts at the ‘Contacts’ tab on their WeChat app. As a brand, you can either advertise your account’s QR code so users can physically scan it. Or they can simply search for your profile in the ‘Contacts’ tab if they intend to.
In general, having an official account on WeChat is a formal way for your business to interact with your customers within the app. By doing this, you are proving your brand’s authenticity in the platform. Thus, you are instantly earning your consumer’s trust with a single badge.
Aside from gaining a badge, it also comes with several marketing and advertising features. Simply put, being a verified business on WeChat not only gets you visibility in the market. It also guarantees opportunities to grow your brand exponentially in the market.
Like other social media pages, you will go through a verification process to make your page a legitimate brand on WeChat. We’ll tackle more about the setup process in a separate article – so, stay tuned!
WeChat Official Account Types: Subscription vs Service Account
There are two types of WeChat Official Accounts – Subscription and Service account. Below are the main differences between the two account types.
Soon we’ll reveal more information about the pros and cons of the Subscription and Service accounts in a separate article.
Now, let’s dig into the features you’ll get when you get your WeChat Official Account.
WeChat Official Account Features
Apart from gaining your customer’s trust, you are also entitled to some WeChat Official Account features. Note that without a verified account, your marketing and advertising opportunities are pretty limited.
Applicable to both Subscription and Service Accounts.
Having a WeChat verified account – either Subscription or Service Account – lets you share valuable content to your customers. Depending on the type of your account, you have the option to broadcast one content daily or up to four per month.
Whether you want to share your latest discounts and offers, you are free to do so with an official account. Additionally, you can target specific customer groups for your messages, such as gender or location.
Applicable to Service Accounts only.
WeChat Pay integration is an essential function for your account if you are a retail, food, cosmetic, or fashion brand. With over 1 billion commercial transactions on the service per day, WeChat Pay is something you shouldn’t miss if you own a Service Account.
Applicable to Service Accounts only.
WeChat Official Account offers a wide range of e-commerce features for Service Account owners. For instance, you can set up your mini program store within the app, as well as integrate coupons and a loyalty program.
If you’re in an industry that relies on e-commerce to stay competitive, then you must keep this in mind.
Applicable to Service Accounts only.
Due to multiple API adaptation, geolocation targeting is also enabled for Service Account owners. This feature allows a more efficient targeted marketing, especially if you’re tapping a certain audience based on location.
For instance, WeChat offers advertising to foreign users based in 11 countries and regions, as well as outbound Chinese tourists across the globe. We’ll dive deeper into WeChat’s geo-targeting features for advertisers soon.
Earning your customer’s trust on social media platforms is a must nowadays. The first step to do this is to get your account verified on all your social media platforms. More so, if your goal is to target Chinese consumers, it’s best to set up a WeChat Official Account for you to complete the first step.
In summary, they are two types of WeChat Official Account – Subscription and Service Account. The former is designed for media and individuals centred on content sharing, while the latter is ideal for businesses and organisations.
This is why the Service Account has more features than the Subscription type. Although its broadcasting limit is fewer than the Subscription account, it is indeed packed with more features. This includes push notifications, advanced API capabilities, and payment.
Aside from this, it also offers prized e-commerce features, such as an online shop, coupon, and loyalty program integration through the mini program.
By understanding the WeChat Official Account features, you’ll get a glimpse of the many things in store for your brand. This is just the first step of your WeChat marketing journey. And you still have plenty of things to learn to maximise the platform.
Therefore, begin your journey with a WeChat Official Account and keep learning. After all, this is the best way to stay in the competition, and ultimately, conquer the Chinese market.
Need ideas for your WeChat Official Account?
Follow these WeChat Official Accounts to help you conceptualise your verified page. Be sure to install the WeChat app on your mobile device first before you click on the links below.
Next step: Get started with your WeChat Official Account setup through an authorised third-party agency today! With Asia Travel Club, you are guaranteed to get the verified WeChat badge in 1-2 weeks. Contact us now to schedule a quick chat soon!
About Asia Travel Club
Asia Travel Club (ATC) is Asia’s leading Influencer Marketing Agency connecting Influencers with brands across China, Korea, Japan, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, and Vietnam.
Since 14 Jan 2019, ATC has attracted more than 3,000 influencers with 380 million followers to come on board with us and has successfully launched more than 50 campaigns for brands and ATC Hotel Partners – Shangri-La Hotels & Resorts, InterContinental Hotels Group, Accor Group, Wyndham Hotel Group, and Cititel Hotel Management.
ATC is also the Official Sales Partner of WeChat, TikTok, and 抖音(Douyin).
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