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How Do Global Companies Use Weibo Marketing?

Maria Krisette Capati, Author

28 April 2019

WeChat will always be the go-to app of companies.

But social media in China has its own unique features, and each platform caters different demographics, such as Sina Weibo. It’s also known or dubbed as China’s Twitter.

As a microblogging site, netizens of different ages also use this to get more information and of course, express themselves.

Did they find something interesting? Should be worth sharing, isn’t it?

So, if you’d like to know more about Weibo Marketing, here’s a quick guide on how you can use it as a tool for engagement with Chinese netizens.

READ MORE >> 5 Ways on How You Can Take Advantage of Chinese Copywriting Services

What is Sina Weibo?

how do global companies use weibo in marketing

Sina Weibo or Weibo is one of the popular microblogging sites that works similar to Twitter. It can only support up 140 characters, unlike Twitter, that can now support up to 240 characters.

Weibo has 462 million MAU and offers opportunities for companies to do map out their marketing strategies to reach out to these millions of audience. One of the unique features of this social media network is that most KOL (Key Opinionated Leaders) build their personal brand and massive followers.

If done right, global companies can use and leverage these influencers who can help them promote their brands or build credibility among their followers.

As the “Chinese Twitter” it remains on top of the list among the netizens and marketers alike. There are other micro-blogging sites such as Baidu Talk, Follow5, and Digu. But China’s younger generation or “Generation Z” often use it.

You can upload images, videos, and GIFs aside from the characters. And if you talk about marketing, then imagine the skill you need in copywriting to communicate your brand in a limited amount of Chinese characters at 140.

How Do Global Companies Use Weibo Marketing?

Hashtags and compelling copywriting work in Weibo marketing. But there are other things to keep in mind when you use it as a tool for marketing.

#1 Display Advertisements

You can use these ads that come in different dimensions and optimized for both web and mobile views. When netizens click the ad, they are directed to the advertiser’s homepage.

To be effective, you can use keywords to increase your visibility and target specific demographics. These display ads are often visible and positioned on the search page or Weibo homepage or the user’s news feed like how Facebook ads work.

#2 Collaborating with Key Opinionated Leaders

You’d be astonished as to how influencers like celebrities and artists (and even beauty and cosmetic reviews) use Weibo to make money and at the same time build their personal branding online.

As the younger generation idolizes famous celebrities, from singer Cai Xukun (蔡徐坤, a.k.a. KUN) to teenage idol Jackson Yee, global brands have to keep up with these marketing trends on how they can engage with the netizens. Billions of views on videos, viral posts or anything that could go viral, global companies can experiment and explore.

#3 Promote your Brand via Weibo search engine

Last but not least, global companies can use this option if they want to target a specific market, and also they need to armed with a robust, well-planned marketing strategy and keywords.

Think of Google and the search terms. With millions of users, Weibo has already a database of buzz words or phrases.

Is Weibo free to use?

To create an account, you need to have an email address and Chinese mobile number to be used for verification.

Creating an account is free of charge. However, the verification process especially for overseas companies also require them to submit business documents and fund their account if they want to use paid marketing.

But you can always ask help from locals and social media specialists to get you started.

Let us know, and we’ll be happy to assist you with social media marketing.

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china market writer

Maria Krisette Capati

Krisette or "Sette" for short is a professional writer and copywriter who loves to cover disruptive technologies, digital trends in China, and a myriad of geeky and innovative topics. She's the Content Strategist at AZ-Loc and currently manages the English website and in-charge of the social media channels. She has been writing about China markets, business, and startups since 2012. She has gained her expertise as a China internet specialist and is fascinated by its business ethics, language, and culture. She's a major of Business Management and Entrepreneurship and an advocate of faith-based non-profit organizations. When she's not writing or dabbling with Sophie and the team, she satiates her wanderlust as a digital nomad. 

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