Potential of WeChat for Business Expansion into China

Recently, a customer reminded me that organizing a sport competition in China requires permit from the relevant association and expressing concerns about the potentially challenging permit application process. Drawing from my experience, I reassured him that as a foreign entity intending to conduct public activities such as talks, seminars, competitions etc, we are require to inform the Gong An (Public Security Bureau), akin to the police as well. To demonstrate our readiness, I outlined the steps we've taken to ensure his business expansion success.

Given that my Chinese team typically communicates via voice messages, I utilized WeChat's built-in feature "Convert to Text" followed by "Translate" to English. The whole process was smooth without extra steps like leaving the platform to copy and paste the messages to Google Translate. No wonder Chinese hesitate to use other messenger apps except WeChat.

In response, the association emphasized the necessity of client's profile in Chinese and prefers them to have an online presence for due diligence checks. Our marketing plan to develop a WeChat Official Account just fell into place. This also made client realize that we are well-prepared to help him in penetrating the Chinese market. We started by getting a Chinese name for their WeChat Official Account, which alignment with their company profile and envisioned activities in China. As they are not well-versed in Chinese, we brainstormed together to find suitable names and applied.

Fortunately, our first choice is available, and this initial success ensures the client has a high chance of being found through keyword searches (This is what we take into consideration when proposing a name).

 

Subsequently, we curated menu contents such as company profiles, founder and management team intros, products and services offered, past achievements to bolster credibility.

Due to time constraints, we prioritized crafting compelling company and founder intros, as well as past events they held for submission. To achieve this, translation, copywriting and artwork design consistent with corporate branding were implemented to produce appealing contents.

Simultaneously, we commenced market research to understand the business environment, market conditions, industry players and regulatory frameworks. Thanks to government grants such as MRA, customers will be able to defray some of their China market entry costs.

Additionally, I was honored to be invited as a panelist in the fireside chat for venturing into China organized by Romin Lim from Lin Chamber of Commerce Singapore.

They are promoting a Business Mission Trip to Xiamen and I was invited to share with participants on how to apply WeChat marketing for business use in China.

Over the years, I have consistently encountered Singaporean business development personnel embarking on China ventures without establishing their corporate's digital presence on WeChat. Many are unaware that they can use a Singapore registered company to apply for WeChat Official Account. This oversight can result in a wasted trip, especially considering that their company's website may not work in China all the time due to the firewall and Chinese individuals are more accustomed to doing almost everything on WeChat.

In conclusion, I strongly advise Singapore companies eyeing the Chinese market, whether targeting PRC residents living in Singapore or China to establish a WeChat Official Account. This serves as a vital online platform for engaging with Chinese audiences, fostering credibility, and facilitating business growth. Should you require assistance with this, feel free to contact me.

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