Recently I discerned when I logged on my Sina Weibo on PC, posts from several corporate accounts I follow almost begged my attentions to use my mobile phone to scan their QR codes, so as to connect them on Weixin. Soon I found out on August 17th, Weixin had already launched its public account platform, with its very alluring slogan “My brand, viewed by over 100 million people”. Looks like we have another new tool in the toolbox of mobile social marketing.
Maybe a little background knowledge first. Weixin(Wechat) is a mobile text and voice messaging communication service powered by China’s internet giant company Tencent. It initially started in January 2011, and now should reach more than 100 million users in China. In fact the success of Weixin is based on Tencent’s oldest bedrock business, QQ, country’s most dominant instant messaging service which access to over 95% of China netizens.
So from PC to mobile, it is a piece of cake for Tencent to guide QQ users to adopt Weixin, simply by using your QQ account to register. Weixin integrates the beauty of mobile instant communication with photo&video sharing, voice chatting (one to one and group chatting), traditional text messages, social sharing, finding nearby Weixin users etc.
This time around Weixin public account platform is more or less aiming for some mobile marketing purposes. Though anyone can register, only the ones having at least 1000 connections are eligible to be the verified account. Obviously celebrities would easily satisfy such criterion, and they are already signing up. As for companies or brands, in order to attract more people to connect with you, the trick is to put your Wexin QR codes visible for people to scan. Therefore Sina Weibo turns out to be the perfect place for converting your Weibo followers into Weixin connections. All these explained clearly for the phenomenon which I had encountered earlier on.
Then what are those benefits once people are connect to your Weixin public account? Well, you can send news update, discount voucher, campaign announcement to their mobile phones, a little marketing sense here. Wait, hold on second, in this way, are we going back to the old age of receiving junkie messages from enterprises, instead of my friends?
Discussions already have been heaped on regarding the tug of war between Weixin and Weibo. Some said Weixin would steal the thunder of Weibo, while others just pooh-poohed the concept of Weixin’s public account function because Weibo is having more information and business DNA which might trigger viral effect whereas Weixin is more relationship strengthening purported for intimate dialogue among acquaintances.
My personal view is it will not hurt for companies to set up a Weixin public account. I did scan a scanty of QR codes of my most favorite enterprises and connect them on my Weixin. Why, simply because I love them and would not mind to be harassed by their messages on a regular basis.
Should company really intend to cultivate its Weixin mobile community, here comes my little suggestions: