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Nike Seeks CRM Boost From Tencent’s WeChat

Nike China announced to run its first marketing campaign on mobile messaging service. In August, Nike unveiled its own accounts on the hit service, which has more than 200 million registered users worldwide.

The WeChat campaign is aimed at enhancing Nike’s one-on-one customer relationships, as its media manager pointed out that: WeChat is our ultimate platform to build up our CRM system. We want to deepen the connection with consumers, from broadcasting to conversing, from ‘one to many’ to ‘one to one’. A digital partner at Nike’s creative agency, further explained that the youthful demographic of its users and the frequency of activity appeals to consumer brands like Nike.

What is WeChat

WeChat is a free mobile app for instant communication launched in 2011 by Chinese Internet communication conglomerate, Tencent. It is available for most phone systems, and can be used to communicate cross-platform. The core function is still about one-to-one or group voice chatting, photo and video sharing, as well as traditional text messages. Features such as Moments are more like a hybrid of Path and Instagram, which is a narrow way to socialize with selective friends. In just recent two or three months, in China more and more celebrities and companies began to open their official accounts on WeChat.

Why WeChat

Personally, I feel that WeChat is really an effective social CRM tool:

1) Speed. The traditional CRM tools, like call center, customers need to wait for the lengthy phone queues, and endless options before talking to the one they want;

2) 100% reach. Once a user has added a company’s account, the chance of receiving the company’s message is 100 percent. Traditional tools like emails, customers may not check it frequently or they may delete it as spam;

3) Affinity. Personally I feel that people on WeChat have more affinity. That may results form our perception towards WeChat. Because before companies and celebrities have their official accounts on this platform, we use WeChat simply chatting with our close friends and families. So subconsciously, we regard WeChat as a tool connecting to someone close to you in personal life.

Suggestions for using WeChat as a CRM tool

Specialists also remind companies that WeChat is not the place for broadcasting marketing messages. Other social medias such as Facebook and Twitter, they are trying to create content for the sake of attracting eyeballs. But in WeChat, it is more important to provide true value. Unless company has additional in-house resources and extra bandwidth from company’s agency, it’s would be better for the company to test drive it personally before opening a official account. Every new social network channel for brands is a new investment. The platforms might be free but the resources the company has to pour into are not.

Overall, I feel WeChat is a really novel platform for companies to interact with their consumers and mange the customer relationships