The vast majority of Chinese tourists have already made purchasing decisions for foreign products before they travel, according to findings from Tencent International Business Group (IBG).
Importantly, this is influenced by the advertisements and promotions on social platforms, which Tencent IBG thinks is not fully leveraged by marketers. After all, mobile ads in China currently only make up between 1% and 1.5% of total advertising spend, which represents a huge opportunity for brands to tap into.
This trend is mostly supported by the rise of mobile and the Internet, says Tencent. Indeed, smartphones usage is increasing in China, with the number of online shoppers in China reaching 374 million at the end of last year, and accounting for a staggering RMB 3,800 billion (US$579 billion) in sales.
Not surprisingly, Tencent IBG suggested that Weixin – the company’s social networking app that is part Facebook and part Instagram, and WeChat – a messaging platform, are ideal candidates to help brands elevate how they engage with consumers.
This works because 90% of Chinese mobile users are already on these platform, says Tencent IBG, and allows brands to bridge the gap between Hong Kong brands and the China market.
“With Weixin and WeChat, brands no longer need to spend time building their own websites,” said Poshu Yeung, the general manager of Tencent IBG a statement. “According to our analysis, 80% of Chinese tourists already know what is on their shopping list before arriving in Hong Kong. This shows the potential value of Weixin and WeChat to brands in influencing consumers purchasing decisions.”
“Tencent is the leading supplier of value-added internet services in China and provides services including Weixin and WeChat, QQ, Tencent News and Tencent Games,” noted Norman Tam, the general manager of Tencent Hong Kong and Taiwan. “More than 90% of mobile users in China use its social platforms, which represents a huge amount of potential customers to marketers.”
According to Tam, these services help bridge the gap between businesses and end users, and transforms the way brands approach marketing. Among others, he pointed to how Weixin and WeChat allow brands to communicate with their audiences through a range of interactive media.