Weixin, pronounced “way-shin,” is the number one Chinese social media app that allows users to send messages, send money to friends and family, pay for taxis, and share and read news and pictures. Weixin is also referred to as WeChat for overseas users. The social networking app is similar to the WhatsApp and has an app store similar to Apple and Google’s app store (Boyd, 2017).
What makes this app so successful? For one, the platform studied its audience to understand what functions were most important. The creators allow users to get everything they need or would search for under one roof. Weixin also designs the interface to be straightforward and convenient (Mahoney & Tang, 2016).
Users can literally do just about everything within the app. Imagine combining all of our social media platforms onto one singular app. Just like it is normal for us to check Facebook, Instagram, Snap Chat, or LinkedIn a million times a day, the Chinese can check everything under one platform. They can even pay using the app. The app has turned into a lifestyle in China (Li, 2016).
How can you turn your app into a success like Weixin? Follow these few steps:
Step One: Know Your Audience
How would you describe your target audience? What are their pain points? Your app should solve your customer’s pain points. Research their behaviors and attitudes to understand what objectives your user might have when using your app. What are the key functions/capabilities your users are looking for? Focus on what your customers want. Do your research to answer these questions!
Step Two: Develop Your USP
USP is your unique selling proposition. How do you differentiate yourself from competitor’s apps? Create value for your target audience. What are pain points users have with the competitor’s apps? There are numerous social media platforms being used every day. How will you stand out?
Step Three: Keep Audience Engaged
Weixin continues to add new features to its app such as a cab reservation function and the Red Envelope Campaign where users could send money in red envelopes to family and friends during the holidays. The technology of a pay feature within the app further integrates into one’s lifestyle because Weixin users can now book flights and hotels! Why go anywhere else when the app has everything?
Weixin is a one-stop shop for its users. Your app can be successful if you continue to research what your customers want and add that to your platform.
Step Four: Never Settle
This might seem like common sense, but sometimes a business gets comfortable with where they’re at. There is always room for improvement, advancement, and growing! What’s the goal you have with this app? How can you continue to be successful?
You may have heard that mass marketing is dead. Customers want a personalized experience when they hear from marketers or go on a business’s app or website. Brands are getting smarter by using an individualized strategy to drive results (Paikin, 2018). As mentioned before by keeping audiences engaged, Weixin keeps introducing new functions to satisfy audiences’ new needs or to fit one’s mood at a particular time (Mahoney & Tang, 2016).
Lessons Learned from the Success of Weixin
- Conduct market research to truly understand your target audience and their individualized behaviors and attitudes.
- Keep your audience engaged by adding new features as their lifestyle and trends change
- Personalize your experience to meet individual behaviors
About the Author: Courtney Pierce is a current Business and Marketing high school teacher in Wisconsin, a wife and a mom to the cutest little girl, Rory. Courtney is also a graduate student at Southern New Hampshire University studying towards a Masters in Marketing. #snhusmm
Boyd, C. (2017, November 22). WeChat: The evolution and future of China’s most popular app. Retrieved from https://medium.com/swlh/wechat-the-evolution-and-future-of-chinas-most-popular-app-11effa5639ed
Li, C. (2016, January 19). Why is WeChat so successful in China ? Retrieved from https://visionarymarketing.com/en/blog/2016/01/how-to-explain-the-huge-success-of-wechat-in-china/
Mahoney, L. M., & Tang, T. (2016). Strategic Social Media: From Marketing to Social Change. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons.
Paikin, L. (2018, December 6). Personalization 2.0: Identity Matching For Individualized Marketing. Retrieved from https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbesagencycouncil/2018/12/06/personalization-2-0-identity-matching-for-individualized-marketing/#4cacd03949cc