Messaging App Campaigns

6 Ways Companies Use WeChat for Business

By February 19, 2019 May 15th, 2019 No Comments
6 Ways Companies Use WeChat for Business

It's likely that you stumbled upon this post because you are looking for WeChat Advertising strategies. In this post, we're going to discuss how companies took advantage of the instant messaging and other features on WeChat. Before you keep reading, we do recommend that you read our Ultimate Guide to WeChat for Business because it explains how WeChat Official Accounts work and how WeChat can be used for Business. We're going to describe the following WeChat Advertising Campaigns:

  1. Burberry WeChat Marketing
  2. Durex WeChat Campaign
  3. Yoox WeChat Campaign
  4. Diana Pet Food WeChat Campaign
  5. British Airways WeChat Marketing Campaign
  6. Boehringer Ingelheim WeChat Marketing Campaign

1. Burberry WeChat Marketing Campaign

With 40 million followers on WeChat and a large part of the companies sales come from the Chinese market, Burberry puts in a lot of work to leverage its WeChat Official Account in order to convert followers into sales.

How Does The Burberry WeChat Official Account Work?

Burberry's WeChat Public Account is primarily focused on helping users find their stores, helping discover Burberry clothing and other luxury items as well as promoting Burberry's events and other marketing initiatives.

This is how the Burberry Official WeChat Account Looks like.
The Burberry Official WeChat Account

When you first follow the Burberry Official WeChat Account you will be taken directly to the messaging screen. Then you receive an automated welcome message right away. The message gives a short explanation of what users can expect from the account, lets users know that they can seek customer support over WeChat and how long that should take.

Rather than promoting users to chat directly to a Burberry representative the company has added a Chat Menu to its account. The chat menu is composed of three areas. The first button takes the user to a store finder. The second button opens a submenu that allows users to choose between Mens, Womens, and Children's fashion. Clicking any of these takes users to Burberry's official web store in China. The third button takes users to Burberry's Mini Programs.

Although this area is generally for apps, Burberry is using it more like mini-sites. The options available are always rotating, but we did see that Burberry is using this space to show replays of past fashion shows, let users know about upcoming events and ask them to subscribe to notifications.

Last but certainly not least, Burberry frequently posts articles about their upcoming shows, updates to fashion shows and collaborations using WeChat Articles.

Has Burberry Done Any WeChat Advertising Campaigns?

Burberry often uses WeChat Advertising Campaigns to turn its followers into online shoppers or even encourage them to go directly to the store. For its WeChat Advertising strategy has created both typical fashion marketing techniques and campaigns specifically designed for WeChat.

One of the simple WeChat advertising campaigns Burberry has done is the Limited Edition T-shirt. A great way to reward it's most loyal fans, Burberry created a t-shirt with the exclusive ThomasBurberry logo, it was only available for sale for 24 hours. All Burberry did on WeChat was post an article explaining the limited time offer and linked users to the page where they can buy. Simple but effective.

But Burberry has also created complex WeChat advertising campaigns. For the Spring Festival in 2016, Burberry used WeChat in a clever way that drove traffic to its stores.

A sample Burberry WeChat Advertising Campaign
Burberry WeChat Advertising | Spring Festival 2016 | Source: Sohu.com

This Burberry WeChat advertising campaigns allowed users to create a Burberry branded cashmere scarf to give to your loved ones. This was done by creating a WeChat Mini App that enabled people to customize the note and send it to others over WeChat. Burberry also used this opportunity to drive traffic to its stores by enabling users to pick up a real like scarf with the same message in their local Burberry location.

2. Durex WeChat Advertising Campaign

Durex is always going to be a little different compared to other brands and its the same on WeChat. Rather than focusing on driving foot traffic or sales, the Durex WeChat Official Account is all about education.

How Does The Durex Official WeChat Account Work?

Once you Follow the Durex WeChat Public Account you will receive an automated welcome message. The message describes the purpose of the account but does not encourage users to message back as it displays a chat menu instead.

This is the Durex WeChat Official Account that Durex uses for WeChat Advertising
Durex WeChat Official Account

The chat menu of the Durex account focuses purely on education. The three chat menu buttons correspond to three categories of products: condoms, lubricant & sex toys. Clicking on any of these three opens a submenu with actual products. Clicking on any of these products takes you to a page which describes the product.

Durex is not trying to sell these products directly, but rather by educating the marketplace with the importance of safe sex they believe this will drive downstream sales in retail locations.

Has Durex Done Any WeChat Advertising Campaigns?

In line with their goals to educate their audience, Durex is not using their Official Account as WeChat advertising per se. There are more so looking to create increased engagement with their audience to drive awareness of the brand.

The Durex Go WeChat Advertising Campaign
Durex Go Mini Game as a WeChat Advertising Campaign | Source: Digitaling

Durex Go is a partnership between Durex and Tencent to create a game that is very similar to Pokemon Go. Rather than catching Pokemon, the game encourages users to catch Magpies. After catching many of them the user is able to evolve their Magpies and event win prizes like a coupon for a hotel or a set of Durex stickers to use in conversations.

This is a sticker you can win from playing Durex Go on WeChat
Durex WeChat Sticker

3. YOOX WeChat Advertising Campaign

YOOX is a company that is no stranger to messaging app marketing, we've covered the YOOX WhatsApp marketing campaign already. So it is no surprise that they are also present on WeChat.

How Does The YOOX WeChat Official Account Work?

The YOOX WeChat Official Account is focused on two goals: getting users to download their app and facilitating eCommerce on the YOOX website.

This is what the YOOX WeChat Official Account looks like
YOOX WeChat Official Account

When you first follow the YOOX official WeChat account you will receive an automated welcome message in the form of an image. The image provides a QR Code to help you download the YOOX app.

As with other Official Accounts we've discussed, YOOX does not promote you to send a message but utilizes the WeChat Chat Menu instead. As usual, this is broken down into three buttons with submenus. The first button has different options related to current sales of new fashion lines. Clicking these buttons takes you directly to the YOOX eCommerce site.

The middle set of buttons are for customer service. One option takes you to the YOOX website where you can check the status of your order. Pressing the other sends an automated message that lets you know the customer service phone number for YOOX as well as the hours of operation. Interestingly, you cannot just message YOOX and request customer service, you must call.

The last button takes you to a page that contains a blog roll of all the YOOX most recent events and special sales.

4. Diana Pet Food WeChat Advertising Campaign

Surprisingly, this pet food company has one of the most interesting WeChat Official Accounts that we have seen yet.

How Does The Diana Pet Food WeChat Official Account Work?

The Diana Pet Food Official WeChat account is focused on promoting the brand of the company with options to explore their products, blogs, and general pet health information.

This is the Diana Pet Food Official WeChat Account
Diana Pet Food WeChat Official Account

When you first enter the Diana Pet Food WeChat Official Account you will be greeted with a welcome message that is in two languages, Chinese and English. They have three buttons across the bottom to help customers explore their products, educational articles, and their blogs.

The first submenu takes you to different product pages, while the second button brings up articles from the companies account. These articles concern the latest research on pet health and how to best take care of various types of pets.

The last buttons take users to a blog name Appet!zer. Although it does not carry the same name as the brand, this is a lifestyle blog concerning pet ownership. Somewhat surprisingly it is in English.

Has Diana Pet Food Done Any WeChat Advertising Campaigns?

The primary goal of Diana Pet Food of using WeChat is to get leads for its newly released products when holding product launch events and increasing the number of followers for its WeChat Official Account at the same time. In this case, when Diana Pet Food launched its new pet food called, “福味多 (fú wèi duō)" or New Pet Food Enhancer for the Chinese market, it sent the invitation to around 200 attendees. In addition to the invitations, the company also sent a test package with two pet-food flavor enhancers: the existing product and the newly released one. The main objective of this particular campaign was to showcase the innovative characteristics of this product compared to the existing one.

To implement this idea, a Diana Pet Food prepared a 2-sided printed invitation and sent to prospective attendees. Each invitation featured two different QR codes linked to WeChat chatbot. One side of the invitation, the customers would see a YES option with a Happy pet face and a QR code, whilst on the other side of the invitation, there would be a NO option with a “Sad” pet face and a QR code. Scanning the QR codes will take the customers to follow Diana Pet Food's official WeChat account. In addition, the chatbot will initiate a conversation will start with a video as well as some questions for customers to attend the product release event.

5. British Airways WeChat Marketing Campaign

In 2016 British Airways decided to target Chinese students who were studying abroad as well as their parents with this smartly done WeChat marketing campaign. The campaign plays on the idea that parents whose children are overseas may not be comfortable coming to see them because they're not familiar with flying or not familiar with the local language.

How Does The British Airways WeChat Official Account Work?

The British Airways Official WeChat Account is a pretty standard affair. Once you follow the account, you will receive a standard message that explains what kinds of text commands you can send to the account and how you can contact customer service by phone. If you send text messages outside those available commands, there is no reply.

A few screenshots that show off the British Airways Official Account & WeChat Advertising
British Airways WeChat Official Account

The most important command is about discounts, what else. The response to this command is a WeChat Article. The British Airways WeChat Official Account uses articles to discuss it's latest discounts and product offers.

There are also plenty of HTML5 pages for you to explore. British Airways has written articles about its product, including the different classes of travel as well as the amenities offered at its new terminal in Heathrow.

There is no flight booking option on the app. If you click the booking link, it will take you directly to the British Airways booking page. Now without further ado, let's check out the campaign.

How Did The British Airways WeChat Marketing Campaign Work?

This British Airways WeChat marketing campaign seems to have been targeted to new flyers. We're not sure if British Airways used any WeChat Advertising to drive traffic to the campaign, but the main way to enter it was by scanning a QR code. This means that there could have been print and other digital media used to drive people to the campaign.

British Airways: Flying the nest

One of the main ways to enter this was through their video which had a QR Code at the end. Once scanned the QR code takes users to an HTML5 side explicitly designed for parents who are traveling to see their children for the first time.

The HTML5 site included useful information for people flying to the United Kingdom for the first time. It included a detailed guide to the types of items you are allowed or forbidden to take onboard the aircraft, a guide to interacting with immigration officials upon landing and a guide to filling out a landing card.

The exciting part of the page was you could fill out the landing card. Then by long pressing, you could save it as a photo to use as a reference later.

6. Boehringer Ingelheim WeChat Marketing Campaign

2019 has been a surprising year. We're finding more and more western companies doing WeChat marketing to improve their position in the Chinese market place. Today we found out that Boehringer Ingelheim, a German pharmaceutical company that has been around for more than 100 years, has created a WeChat Official Account to continue educating the Chinese market about Parkinsons and treatment options. Pharmaceutical companies are now becoming more and more creative with their marketing campaigns.

This image is from the Boehringer Ingelheim WeChat Marketing Campaign, it shows parkinsons symptoms
Boehringer Ingelheim WeChat Marketing Campaign – Source: cgtn.com

The Boehringer Ingelheim WeChat Marketing Campaign includes more than it's WeChat Official Account. They have also created a website where Chinese users can browse through much of the same information that is available in the WeChat OA.

How Does The Boehringer Ingelheim WeChat WeChat Official Account Work?

The Boehringer Ingelheim WeChat WeChat Official account is just a website inside WeChat. There are two major ways users can interact, read & like articles or search for their nearest Parkinsons outpatient clinic using the interactive map.

The articles available on the WeChat account fall into the following categories:

  • Patient Experiences
  • Campaigns for Public Awareness
  • Parkinsons Symptoms
  • Chicken Soup for Parkisons
  • Advice from Doctors
  • Advice from Therapists

Chicken Soup for Parkinsons articles are articles that help sufferers and their families get through their situation with soothing articles that describe the best ways to get through it all.

A series of images that show The Boehringer Ingelheim WeChat WeChat Official Account
The Boehringer Ingelheim WeChat WeChat Official Account

There is an area of the account that is explicitly dedicated to service. When you navigate to it, you are taken directly to a chat. We were surprised to see that the welcome message in the chat used our names, this is somewhat uncommon in WeChat OAs at least in our experience.

However, when we attempted to respond to this message in either English or Chinese we were only able to receive a broken HTML string in return.

Was The Boehringer Ingelheim WeChat Marketing Campaign a Success?

As this is more of an awareness campaign, it's tough to gauge whether this entire effort was a success. Although we tried to reach out to their website for comment, we weren't able to receive any response.

According to newrank.cn, this WeChat Official Account has about 14,000 active followers. Newrank.cn also indicates that their WeChat articles receive anywhere from 300 to 3000 reads.

Further Reading

We updates this blog post regularly with additional campaigns. If you like, you can be notified when updates happen.

Iaroslav Kudritskiy

Iaroslav Kudritskiy

Iaroslav is the Chief Operating Officer at Rocketbots overseeing growth and operations. He is a graduate of the MBA program at the Chinese University of Hong Kong and his previous roles include positions at Kodak Alaris, Xaxis & Light Reaction.

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