When you want to target a new market for your cosmetics brand, your priority is to reach out this audience and get them interested in what you have to offer.
The first step in order to be visible to them is usually to create a website and to be present on social media to push information to your prospects.
China is no exception: you also need a specific strategy to be visible to Chinese beauty customers. Creating a Chinese website is very important of course. The one thing that will change is your strategy regarding social media: being visible on Baidu thanks to Baidu ads is expensive, and SEO actions take a long time before being efficient. Your best bet to communicate about your beauty products is to go for WeChat.
What is WeChat and how can it help your business?
WeChat is, by essence, a messaging app. It has recently reached 600 million monthly users and is by far the app Chinese users spend the most time on, for work or entertainment. Users are constantly connected and will open it many times a day.
You might wonder why you should base your communication strategy on such an application. WeChat, unlike Whatsapp, does not only serve messaging purposes. Of course, people can use it to send texts to individuals and groups, record voice messages or even do live and video chat. However, this application has a lot more to offer.
Connect with your target thanks to WeChat
The main difference with other similar apps lays in how people interact with each other – either by sending messages, by participating to interest group chats or by sharing content on their Moments feed – and whom they can be in contact with through this app. Beauty brands can indeed create official accounts and get on board on the WeChat experience along with their audience.
One interesting fact about WeChat is that you will not be pushing information to anyone on your feed, but only to those who choose to follow you. It is therefore the end user who connects with you, then once you are part of his network you can start interacting with him. As WeChat has a built-in QR code reader, users will generally scan your brand account’s QR code to follow you, or they will ask a member of their network to share your details with them.
Interact with your audience
Having an official account on WeChat is like having your own mobile website on this platform. Thus it is easy to broadcast information about your cosmetics company and what is has to offer. Such a feature is a useful way to complement your already existing website.
Thanks to your official account, you will also be able to send welcome messages, auto replies depending on specific keywords or even surveys to your followers.
WeChat’s business-oriented functions
Large accounts have access to many more features. WeChat indeed offers functions such as WeChat Wallet, Membership or Advertising, which come in very handy for business purposes.
WeChat Wallet allows users to link their WeChat account to their credit card or bank account, enabling instant payment through their smartphone. These purchases can be done either online directly via the app, or offline by scanning a QR code and then authorizing the app to make the payment.
This commerce driven function has clearly changed Chinese consumption habits and the opportunities are endless. Today the range of possibilities go from buying items online, to paying for your cab ride or even making an appointment at the doctor. Which creative solution will you come up with for your beauty products?
More than offering WeChat users to buy your products, this app makes it possible for you to manage your followers and customers. By using the Membership function, you convert simple followers into members, whom WeChat ID and phone number will then be associated to a geolocalised membership card. A brand is thus able to contact them according to where they are: WeChat Membership enables an easy segmentation of your followers.
Advertising on personal WeChat Moments is also possible for accounts that have more than 100,000 followers. Again, there are many possibilities, ranging from vouchers or sales promotions to VIP cards. Users can be targeted according to different criteria such as age, gender, location, interest, device or phone network.
All in all, WeChat can be used by brands like a real CRM system. Brands are in a one-to-one connection with their followers since their conversation cannot be seen by other users. They know their followers since they have access to their contact information, interests and purchase history. They can send them differentiated messages and provide them with offers which can be used both for their online and offline purchases.
Create a real community with WeChat
Not only can you push offers to your audience but you can also nurture a real online community around your cosmetics brand. This community will depend on the followers you have successfully gathered. As seen above, users come to you by looking for your account. Some brands also try to appeal to WeChat users with incentives: by scanning their QR code –therefore by becoming a follower– these users are for example offered to participate in lucky draws.
Making this community grow depends on the content you provide. The more compelling this content is, the more appealing your brand will appear to users. If your own website already contains relevant information, sharing it via this app will improve your brand experience to WeChat users.
Furthermore, interest groups can help you greatly in this matter. These can be created for a specific topic and users can only access it if invited: they are therefore only for those users who are really interested in what you have to say. It is up to brands to come up with engaging content to keep users engaged in the conversation. Users generally do not like to engaged in groups that appear too branded, therefore beauty brands should focus on discussing cosmetics, daily tips and trends.
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