How to Build a Brand with WeChat Messenger Platform

WeChat is one of the success stories of the Chinese technology scene. In less than two years, this simple chat application has transformed into a promising marketing device for companies around the world. WeChat Messenger has also released APIs for third party developers. This has resulted in the creation of entire self-sufficient ecosystems of integrated applications- from providing information to delivering customer support.

However, with the limitations of WeChat Messenger, companies need to consider what they need to do in order to get an edge over others using this tool. These limitations are as follows:

  • Weaker Search: Compared to Weibo which is all about discovery of new businesses and services; WeChat Messenger has yet to reach that position. To find a brand, the exact name by which it has registered has to be known. In this situation, the only sure shot way for your brand to be found is the scanning of a QR code.
  • This or That? While the Service Account is equipped with custom menu, advanced functions and can serve as a mobile version of the company’s official website; it offers only one update per month to reach its users.

Subscription Accounts allow maximum two messages a day. However, there are no provisions to customize the page. Also, messages from Subscription Accounts end up in a separate subfolder.

  • Measuring the engagement: According to a Tencent announcement, new APIs are available for verified accounts for an annual subscription of RMB 300. These APIs allow advanced follower tracking, however the capabilities are very limited. It is fair to predict that WeChat will add more metrics into the back end of WeChat Messenger.

To help you choose the perfect account for your business, here are a few tips:

  • Integration of e-commerce: If your company is thinking of integrating a payment system inside WeChat Messenger, you should opt for a Service Account. Currently, only Chinese issued bank and credit cards are supported, which are going to be expanded globally very soon.
  • Engagement or functionality? Service accounts are more about functionality, serving as a mini app within WeChat Messenger. Opt for this kind of account only if you can think of offering some functional services to your clients. For example, having a built in store locator, integration of points or membership benefits, etc.
  • Setting up with ease: With lesser functions to offer, subscription accounts are much easier to get up and running in no time. They do not require the level of customization as service accounts do. Keep users engaged with quality and interesting content, as deletion is only the swipe of a finger away.
  • Spreading the word: If your business is more concerned with keeping clients connected to your latest updates, sending out coupons, event announcements and new promotions; you should choose a subscription account.
  • Choose wisely! Remember that once a decision is taken to choose either subscription or service account, it cannot be undone. Of course, there remains the scope of having both a service account for functionality and subscription account for advertising.

If you have any other questions or queries, you can always contact us.

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