WeChat – One App for Everything – Part 2

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Written by Daryll Tan

WeChat has become one of the most widely used apps, with over 20million local users and 1billion global users, for good reason. They are constantly ahead of the game, innovating ways to convenience their users.

In 2017, WeChat launched ‘Mini Programs’, an app within an app, and it has been a huge success. Mini programs are simple apps that work within the WeChat system. Users prefer them to traditional apps since they neither crowd the phone nor require a separate download. Simply put, mini programs are well received because they are both convenient and user-friendly.

The brand Eu Yan Sang used mini programs to save over a million ringgit in advertising costs.

  1. Eu Yan Sang created the 10,000 Steps Challenge Mini Program, which participants could access and upload their step-count everyday, earning them a chance to win rewards in the form of vouchers and cash prizes.
  2. The campaign went viral among the Chinese community in Malaysia. Eu Yan Sang garnered about 25,000 WeChat followers, with about 40,000 game participants in the mini program.
  3. Eu Yan Sang had about 2 million page views during the campaign period, which led to a significant increase in patronage to physical stores.

In May 2019, iCarAsia announced the launch of the Carlist.my mini program. Within WeChat, users can:

  1. Search for cars
  2. View detailed descriptions of available cars
  3. Directly communicate with dealers
  4. Receive exclusive promotions

Another notable development is the collaboration between L’Oreal and WeChat to launch ‘ModiFace’, the first 3D augmented reality make-up try-on application for the WeChat Mini Program. AR features have been shown to triple website engagements.

So why should marketers care?

  1. The convenient in-app payment features, such as WeChat Pay encourages its large user base to purchase more.
  2. WeChat has plans to boost advertising on the mini programs, testing more ad formats as users grow “ad blind” to traditional formats. The expansion of the ad platform gives marketers more opportunities to reach consumers.
  3. The collaboration with L’Oreal shows how the app is becoming a more versatile platform for product demonstrations and mobile commerce.

The growth in users for WeChat’s mini programs continues to rise despite increased competition from major mobile platforms. And if the last few years are anything to go by, they are not slowing down anytime soon.

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