We work with KAWO because it repurposes Western content into WeChat and Weibo, with an intuitive English-language backend.
However, it is an enterprise level software, and has a monthly subscription fee. Recently a client asked us about alternatives to KAWO. Here are some thoughts from myself and from our Managing Director (and resident Cloud Technology expert) Glyn MacLean.
There is currently no alternative to KAWO, other than manually publishing content through the administration login for a WeChat Official Account (OA). This can be complex, or simple depending on which stage you are at in WeChat Adoption.
Stage 1: Establishment
What you're doing:
Populate WeChat Official Account with on-brand content.
Needs to be accurate
Stage 2: Community development
What you're doing:
Positive story telling.
Lower requirement for technical accuracy
Low input and impact on company resources
Benchmarks already in place (visual, written style, etc)
At the community-building stage, an organisation may choose to co-create with their Chinese audience, by recruiting a volunteer or intern.
The WeChat OA backend allows for multiple operators, so you can have a panel of contributors keeping content flowing.
Why Establishment is Important
Most organisations, in seeking to save cost, start at Stage 2. This can be very risky for an organisation's brand.
One of the most important things that RCN does is to train key personnel to understand workflows and become a guide across the workflow, for as long as it takes for everyone to comfortable to be self-sufficient with this workflow.
As Glyn says, "This involves being a little patient, understanding that it can take a few posts to gain the muscle memory. Humanising this learning, usually means allowing 3 to 4 months minimum of co-collaboration across the workflow."
That's why RCN has developed 12-month programs to develop organisational capability through the workflows. But once you have a technology platform optimised and you have people trained, this reduces the need for ongoing outsourced cost.
Our aim is to create organisational self sufficiency and cost efficiency. If you have churn and lose trained people, we can be brought back in at relatively low cost for training and onboarding, if this is needed.
KAWO, GRATA and other technology platforms form vital pieces of the digital pathway to China. But central to the path is the journey taken by individuals and organisations. As Sir Edmund Hillary famously said, "It is not the mountain we conquer, but ourselves".
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