China Marketing Weekly: WeChat Mini Programs And More

Wed, 01/24/2018 - 18:17

This week we talk about shopping trends for the upcoming Chinese New Year, WeChat mini-programs (as they’re lately in favour) and lessons to learn from China’s biggest e-commerce players.
Last week we broadcasted our first live-stream training on Yingke platform. Did you have a chance to have a look? There’s another one coming this week! Our upcoming trainings will be mostly in Chinese, hence the question: would you like us to publish them later with English subtitles? Let us know!

On our blog, we talk about a search engine you might have not heard about. Does Shenma ring a bell? It’s not as popular as Baidu, but we think you should know what it is and how to use it for your China marketing. Check Tait’s post here.
- Wiktoria

Top News
We’ve been talking a lot about WeChat mini programs as they are getting very popular. They are Tencent’s step into retailing business and an attempt to create “an app that runs apps”. How much do you know about them though? They are lightweight apps built into WeChat’s interface, and if they don’t exceed 10MB, there’s no need to install them. You can just choose one of over 580,000 mini programs and use it immediately. They are fast, they are convenient. They might be used for live-streaming, shopping, ordering food, renting a bike etc. Most of the popular brands have already started their own mini programs, either as a e-shop or just to strengthen their brand’s position among almost 1 billion of WeChat users. Mini programs have also been used as a “teaser” of video games. - Read more (English)
Trends & Reports
Girls in China have recently gone crazy about a mobile game called 旅かえる (Travelling Frog). The idea is pretty much the same as in the game popular in 90s called Tamagotchi. Players are supposed to take care of their “frog son”. So, they have to feed it, provide all daily-life necessities and take care of him during his travel around Japan. The “frog son” sends back pictures taken during the trip if he’s being kept in good mood. Female players claim to build an real emotional relationship with their “kid”. A popularity of the game relies on the “spiritual loss” of the one-child-policy generation. Those are young people who grew up being spoilt by their families, but never had a chance to share their care and love with others. Also, it’s sometimes easier for them to look for digital friends as they often have trouble communicating with their peers. - Read more (Chinese)

As Chinese New Year draws closer, many Chinese people have already started their annual preparations, including shopping. According to the research, first- and second-tier cities’ residents mostly buy things online, and are willing to spend much more money than people living in third- and fourth-tier cities. The top products on their shopping lists are food, snacks and clothes, followed by beverages and fruits. - Read more (Chinese)
One thing to remember is, unlike Westerners in Christmas period, Chinese people rather present their loved ones with red envelopes (i.e. money) than personalised gifts.

Chartbeat, a company focused on website traffic analysis, having analyzed 250,000 headlines, revealed what influence different words have on headlines attractiveness. How to generate more traffic? Use numbers, quotations or words connected with emotions. Avoid headlines that are too long or too short. Including questions or words referring to time might lower down your open rate. - Read more (Chinese)
E-commerce & Payments and Meili are teaming up to open a new fashion e-tail venture. What’s important here is that it won’t an independent platform. Instead, it will be entirely based on WeChat mini programs feature. Meili is described as “a cross between Pinterest and a fashion catalogue” and is the biggest competitor of Alibaba’s Taobao., Meili and Tencent are clearly joining forces to stand up to Alibaba’s e-commerce market share in China. - Read more (English)
China’s e-commerce giants are constantly reshaping the idea of online and offline shopping experience. We’re at the stage when the West need to learn from China, not the other way around. What are the most important lessons?
  • Chinese customers get to online stores through various channels - like KOLs or live-streaming platforms - not necessarily search engines.
  • Chinese rely on mobile phones rather than PCs.
  • In order to get customers’ attention, you need to be very creative. They’ve been lately inclining towards offline retailing and that’s what you want to focus on as well.
  • Chinese merchants use the customer date much better than it’s done in Western countries. - Read more (English)
Tencent is catching up on other retailers. They just opened an unmanned pop-up store in Shanghai. They sell chocolates, bottled water and juices, cookies, and coffee mugs, as well as WeChat merchandise. The store got over 30,000 visitors in the first two days. Some of them decided to buy one of the offered products just for the experience. Pop-up stores are one of the hottest offline retail trends in China. - Read more (English)
Mobile payments are very convenient, but it’s also where many frauds or information leaks happen. A very sensitive space seem to be QR code scanning, especially on social media. After scanning the code, users are redirected to fake payment account, instead of official fanpage. - Read more (English)
Ok, that's all for today. See you next week!




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