If the first question that cross your mind when you read the title is “What on earth is WeChat?” Or, “What is an Official WeChat account?” you probably were less interested with marketing channels in China. This is your chance to get up to date. If you heard of WeChat and still do not understand why your sales manager or sales person need an Official WeChat account, this post offers answers based on Chinese sales manager’s everyday life.
The online tools available to marketing manager in China are different from those of the ones available elsewhere. Google, YouTube, Facebook and Tweeter do not work in China; therefore, you need to adopt the Chinese tools.
FYI – the Chinese WeChat is closest thing to WhatsApp. But this is an asymmetrical comparison because WeChat offers more than WhatsApp.
WeChat is a leading business tool in China and functions as well in running many of our daily life activities. You can click your mobile to: pay and receive payments, order flight tickets, train tickets, buy tickets to the movie and even donate to your favorite charity. WeChat plays a major role in Chinese social life – people in China keep in touch via WeChat.
WeChat account is accessible in China and around the world. The interfaces are simple and you rarely encounter connection problems. If you have ties to China and still don’t have a WeChat account, you can download the mobile app, by the time you’ll finish to read this post.
How WeChat benefits your business in China?
Business card replacement
Until recently, at the end of every social event our sales manager had 40-50 new business cards. After the last social event he attended, he had only 2 new cards in his hand and 40 new WeChat friends. In 2 second you scan to your mobile the details of the person you meet, and his WeChat account instantly share with you relevant information of this person, his company etc.
If you are communicating with someone in China, your Chinese is not fluent and his English is not that great, you can write in English and WeChat will translate it immediately to Chinese – and vice versa.
WeChat improves your communication with your team, your clients and your suppliers in China. You could talk directly with them without your sales manager as the intermediate and translator.
WeChat is a great way to receive an immediate feedback on your product, while sitting in your office, and your sales manager, rather than translating, is visiting a new client.
Available and accessible solution to presentations
During recent years we are less comfortable to carry to exhibitions and meetings brochures and catalogs. It harms the environment, it is heavy and obviously, the minute we leave, they are tossed to the bin. Similarly, using the company’s presentation is less convenient. It is time consuming – open your laptop, attach it to the projector and so on. In our fast world using a tablet for presentations is an impressive and sophisticated step forward – if you can access the company’s mobile compatible internet site from China.
In the daily life of a sales manager in China, it is more efficient to present company information via official WeChat account. The latest version allow uploading to the company’s official account on WeChat all the relevant marketing materials: brochures, elaborate presentations, video clips; catalogs and more.
Building a business community
A great advantage of an official company WeChat account is the opportunity to build your own business community straightaway. After creating your official WeChat account, design an appealing mini-site at the company’s official WeChat account so you could directly address your business affiliates and contacts.
AS soon as your account is active – inform your contacts, clients, suppliers, agents and your entire business circle in China – that the company has an official WeChat account. Invite them to follow it and to receive your latest updates. All you need to do now is to regularly update your account and they’ll receive an update message. It’s an efficient way to be in touch with your Chinese business community. That will keep you in their minds and save you from using annoying email promotions.
During exhibitions – building client’s database and increase exposure
During exhibition, after showing, via WeChat, your company’s presentation on your tablet, offer the person who saw it to scan your QR code and instantly to become a follower. No need to collect business cards, trying to remember who is who. You can also scan his QR code into your WeChat and add few details to remind yourself who he is and probably see his picture and the picture of his entire family…that way, business relationship becomes a lot more personal immediately.
For maximum exposure, put your QR code on your booth sign, so even if your booth is packed with people, those who didn’t get a chance to see your presentation then and there will be able to scan the company’s QR and get an immediate private presentation on their mobile. They can also become followers and you have them forever even without talking to them.
Additional useful feature of WeChat at exhibition setting is the possibility to see if anyone from your contacts is nearby. You could know who attend the exhibition and their location and expand your encounters with them.
Managing efficiently your Chinese team
WeChat improves your communication with your Chinese team. It helps you to better manage the team. For example, via WeChat you can: forward emergency money, watch videos sent by sales personnel from anywhere in China, have free high quality audio or video chats (better than Skype) and save money on cellphone bills.
Your sales representative can present an issue raised by a client on a video call with you technical support person at headquarters and receive real time guidance for optional solutions.
Creating a WeChat group of all sales representatives in different Chinese cities is another good use of WeChat. It enables daily communication, saves individual repetitions and gets you better control on daily operations.
The location feature is a monitoring option in situations of distrust with the Chinese team. This feature will enable you to see where your employees are at any given time.
Another handy use of the location feature is when setting a meeting at an unfamiliar location and it is difficult to explain or to understand the directions.
Every day we find new WeChat features that make our work easier – and it will improve.
However, with good there is a challenge – especially in China
In order to open an official WeChat account, you need to have a registered company in China. This is a minor obstacle, since companies like PTL GROUP, who help with China market entry and provide marketing services in China, are able to let you use their business license to register your WeChat account. However since uploading information to the net in China is highly regulated, it would make sense that the company who registered the account will provide support as well as content control and management to make sure you comply with local guidelines.
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