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A super app is a closed ecosystem in itself that offers a seamless integrated, contextualised, and efficient experience to the users. These apps work as an umbrella application to deliver offerings through in-house services and third-party integrations. However, nowadays, the term has become a synonym with the two rising China super apps, namely WeChat and Weibo.

These popular Chinese apps have become an integral part of the everyday life of people in China. WeChat has exceeded 1.2 billion users and offers more than 2 million mini-programmes on its platform, whereas Weibo has 550 million monthly active users. These China famous apps are not simply social platforms but also a gateway for B2B companies to build sturdy customer relationships within the Chinese market. Therefore, any company that desires to tap on the China B2B market has no reasons not to leverage these two super apps.

The potential reach of WeChat and Weibo

In 2020 Q1, Weibo reached 550 million monthly active users. Recording an increase of 34 million users over the previous quarter, Weibo is the largest public traffic platform in China. 

On the other hand, according to an industry survey in 2019, nearly 90% of Chinese enterprises use WeChat public accounts as the main channel for their brand promotion, by sharing enterprise-related information, industrial policy information, enterprise award information and more on their social posts. 

Albeit other social platforms that are gaining popularity such as Douyin and Zhihu,  the contents on WeChat official accounts and Weibo are perceived to be more aligned with the content preference of China’s B2B audience. 

The line between B2B and B2C marketing

For any business organisation, it is essential to understand the difference between B2B and B2C marketing. Understanding these differences allows them to take advantage of tactics that are applied individually to B2B or B2C businesses.

B2C marketers focused their marketing efforts on the needs of their end-users while B2B marketing is focused on a small group of professionals who make a purchase decision on behalf of their organisation. Often, the sales cycle of B2B marketing is typically a longer process. The goal of B2B marketing is to allow customers to expect to see ROI, efficiency and brand development value whereas, for B2C marketing, customers expect to see more interesting interactive content. 

For B2B marketing, the purchase motive for customers is driven by logic and financial conditions compared to B2C marketing, where customers are emotionally driven. 

The driving factor for B2B marketing for customers is that they want to be educated about the brand. On the other hand, for B2C marketing, customers can accept the education of the brand, but they do not need to make purchasing decisions based on the education.

In B2B marketing’s process of purchase, customers expect to have sales or marketing for cooperation. In comparison to B2C marketing, customers do not like being harassed by sales. 

Lastly, for B2B marketing, the purchase decision for customers is that they usually consult with brand members before making a purchase decision. In contrast to B2C marketing, customers do not need to negotiate with the brand when purchasing. 

WeChat and Weibo as the preferred channel for China B2B marketing

WeChat and Weibo are the perfect touchpoints for any enterprise to connect with Chinese business decision makers. These China super apps allow you to showcase your brand by sharing relevant articles, news stories, product reviews, and more.

1. WeChat for Enterprises

With a massive user base and incredibly engaged users with high purchasing power, WeChat is one of the most important tools for China B2B marketing. Every enterprise serving the China B2B market, whether domestic or foreign, should have a digital presence on WeChat. In order to leverage WeChat marketing to break through the clutter, the following steps are recommended after establishing a WeChat enterprise account:  

– Leverage on WeChat features such as Enterprise service/subscription account authentication, Opening rights to advertisers (applicable to WeChat advertising services), Enterprise WeChat menu and mini official website settings, Mini Programmes / H5 game development / Content push (picture/article/video), Live broadcasting, and etc. 

– Plan a calendar of content with different form factors to increase readership and followers’ cohesion 

– Include a call-to-action

– Build a community

2. Weibo for Enterprises

Weibo has a well-established ecosystem of its own and it is deeply rooted in the internet users’ habits in China. The impressive results of its year-on-year growth have turned Weibo into a very powerful tool for China B2B marketing. It allows businesses to build brand awareness amongst the Chinese audience. The key to effective B2B marketing using this popular Chinese app is good and reliable content.

There are 5 ways for brands to increase visibility on Weibo:

– Weibo Influencer campaigns to carry promotions

– Weibo advertising for display advertising in user feeds

– Weibo lottery to reward users to take actions (like, share, etc.)

– Cross-promotion for both B2C and B2B promotions

– Organic growth

Driving brand awareness and lead generation through WeChat and Weibo

There are many different ways to drive awareness for your brand, such as leveraging WeChat public account, WeChat group, Weibo group, mini programmes, and etc. 

The key to effective B2B marketing is no secret — good content. WeChat/Weibo users are able to search for content using relevant keywords and hashtags. Chinese audiences prefer to read media articles and graphic content on WeChat, while they prefer to read more interactive content and brand activities on Weibo. Delivering high-quality content that resonates with your target audiences is the key to successfully drive your brand awareness to potential customers and encourage them to engage with your brand. The volume of traffic B2B marketers can expect need not be very high volume, in fact for B2B marketing, it’s the quality of traffic that matters over quantity.

B2B marketers should also bear in mind that Key Opinion Leader (KOL) cooperation is also one of the most effective digital strategies. While marketers might use WeChat moment ads, Weibo information flow ads and other advertising products to drive brand awareness and increase traffic to their brand accounts, KOLs are able to drive better quality traffic since they are the voice of authority in a particular domain.

If your business is looking to tap into the world’s second-largest economy, our team of highly experienced strategists, creatives, digital marketing specialists and technophiles can help you with your digital marketing strategy in the Chinese market. Reach us by email at enquiry@strategicdigitalab.com or fill in our enquiry form to discuss. You can also take a look at our list of services.