As part of WeChat ecosystem, there is a diverse range of marketing-oriented gateways that are opportunities for brands to reach their audience. Besides WeChat Public Account and WeChat Mini Program, brands can leverage the WeChat Brand Zone as another port of entry to connect them with their audience. Another advantage of this digital access point: consolidate your WeChat searchability by extending your exposure in the WeChat landscape to non-followers within WeChat.
1. What is WeChat Brand Zone? How does it work?
It is a specific area that shows up on the very top in the search result page when users enter a brand name (and related terms) that has set up their zone.
The brand zone intro functions as a complete mini-site. Brands and businesses have full control over their dedicated space that can be populated with the followings divided into 3 parts, the boutique store, the Official Account and a customized page. The image below shows Cartier’s brand zone and the 3 options that fall under it.
- Web-based application rendered within WeChat in-app browser (h5)
- Store locator listing: display all the nearby Cartier stores
- Contact info: phone number
- Customized content and activity: a comprehensive introduction, WeChat themed campaigns, promotions
- WeChat Official Accounts
- Mini Programs
- Direct Online Sales Channels: Boutique Stores, e-commerce h5
Easy to access, it is aiming to improve searchability when users are landing on the WeChat search result, especially for the ones who are not following the given brand yet.
The brand zone is a key opportunity for brands to take control of the search function and offer users a quick entry point to the WeChat ecosystem.
Moreover, since it is free to open (unlike Baidu Chinese search engines’ brand zones), it should be considered among the WeChat setup basics for brands.
Benefits of using the Official access point from a business perspective
- Exposure to non-followers within WeChat
- Searchability capability
2. This official WeChat channel is a way to capture your branded search traffic in an optimal way:
WeChat search is the number one source of follower recruitment to Official Accounts for premium and high awareness brands:
3. WeChat Brand Zone FAQ
– Show reassurance for users that they are interacting
– Exposure to non-followers through search: users can directly search for brands they want to visit on WeChat
– Shortcut to your most important WeChat properties: Shop, Mini Program, store locator etc.
– Flexible traffic control: redirecting users to the best sales channel – H5, Mini Program, brand mobile website etc.
– Direct integration with Tencent geo-located database for stores.
It’s free to set-up, as long as you can show Tencent you control the brand trademark.
– A verified WeChat Official Account
– Proof of trademark control: exclusive
– Not being in the medical or in the financial industry due to the WeChat industry restrictions
– Industry restrictions by WeChat platform: Brands can not be in the medical or financial industry
– Text / image
– WeChat Mini Programs
– WeChat Brand Account
By typing in the brand’s name and related terms in the search bar and selecting the search option
Learn more about the trademark registration prerequisite: + Protecting your brand with trademark registration on WeChat
4. First case study on how brands such as Gucci, Longchamp and Cartier take advantage of this official WeChat in-app space:
From their own Brand Zone:
- Cartier redirect visitors to their H5 online store
- Gucci redirect visitors to their brand website
- Longchamp redirect visitors to their WeChat mini-program online store
5. Updates and timelines on WeChat Brand Zone
|July 2019||Branded content section to promote a service, product or content.||theEgg|
|January 2018||A selected group of brands (mostly luxury business) has received exclusive access to this feature as beta adopter|
|December 2017||The new feature called “brand zone” is released in WeChat version 6.6.1|