WHAT IS A WECHAT OFFICIAL ACCOUNT? A WeChat Official Account is a formally registered commercial profile within the Tencent WeChat social commerce ecosystem. An Official WeChat Account will provide you with:
- V erified Account for your brand = audience trust.
- I nitial registration of your intellectual property = IP security. - P latform for all your on-brand content, digital marketing = brand voice. This in turn provides you with:
- Access to the WeChat API (Application Protocol Interface) for integrations.
- Unlimited audience size for enterprise level scalability of unlimited followers.
- An administration console which allows remote collaboration for your teams. - The starting point for your customer journey - a business landing page.
- Access to add mini-programs to engineer customer solutions.
- Ability to add KAWO FOR CONTENT MANAGEMENT
- Ability to add GRATA FOR CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE.
- Ability to add RCN MALL for a WeChat Store.
To the Chinese B2C and B2B community this means:
- You have authenticated your commitment to China and to Chinese people.
- You have validated that your brand is genuine through a formal process.
- Your WeChat customers can speak directly to your company.
This is because a WeChat Personal Account is used extensively to login and to operate a WeChat Official Account. There are strict limitations to the context of use of both and you won't be able to conduct West to East commerce without training.
WHAT YOU KNOW, WON'T HELP YOU
- GET IN THE KNOW. Much that we have been told by agencies about the WeChat Official Account applications process has at least some fundamental errors. TIME FRAMES The first error is the misrepresentation of time frames. It takes only 1-3 working days to get verified, if you are well prepared. Not the 4-6 weeks that many agencies are promoting. This is absolutely wrong. We think it is also misleading and detrimental to marketing teams to be forced to wait this long. We're very disappointed at the lack of attention to detail. However, most agencies are pioneering their services and not used to auditing the end-to-end complexity of business process, beyond their key area of service - e.g. payments.
YOUR WECHAT OA IS YOUR FIRST STEP TO PROTECT YOUR BRAND IP
Many payment firms are missing MISSION CRITICAL DETAILS to MARKETING, such as the fact that a WeChat Official Account is how you first register your intellectual property and secure your brand name within the Tencent ecosystem. This is crucial, because WeChat is like Linkedin and Amazon combined. While your business may use other platforms to sell, 100% of businesses need to use WeChat for Customer Experience. And this is the discipline that most payment providers miss when optimising payments as a standalone function. Firms that handle only payments, may provide you with WeChat OA set up for free, but may miss this critically important detail of your IP and name registration, because they are not marketing experts, they are payments experts.
CAN YOU DO IT YOURSELF?
It is not going to be possible for most businesses to set up their own WeChat Official Account due to the complexity, and you could be causing yourself very big problems for the future if you don't dot your i's and cross your t's. Given the legal implications of getting your application wrong for future commerce, there is a lot of associated commercial risk if you get it wrong. 100% of applications are personally audited by an accredited WeChat third party financial fraud prevention organisation. They will check every detail, personally.
ATTENTION TO DETAIL To do this correctly, you are going to need a highly trained digital ninja.
Simon and Glyn live, breathe, eat and sleep China business process. To the left is a technical diagram that clearly expresses the level of commitment. Better than ninjas.
We have personally walked through the sleepless nights of scrutinising the entire step-by-step application process. Patiently going through every nuanced detail of preparation needed. Right down to each format of documentation needed for a business applying from every authorised country.
COUNTRIES AUTHORISED RCN can assist your WeChat Official Account set up for the following countries:
New Zealand Australia Canada United States of America Hong Kong Singapore Malaysia Mainland (China) Taiwan (China) Japan
ACCELERATING CONTENT MARKETING SET UP. Red Circle Network (RCN) can process WeChat Official Accounts in under 5 working days. Usually applying for a WeChat Official Account can take up to 4-6 weeks.
HOW RCN ACHIEVES THE FAST APPLICATION TIME FRAME
We unbundle WeChatPay application from the WeChatOA application and treat these as a separate process, which they are. Agencies that bundle the services are causing operational injury to a sales and marketing team, who need as much lead time as they can get once the company has pressed the LETS DO CHINA button.
PREPARATION IS NINE TENTHS OF SUCCESS. What this means, is that a MARKETING DEPARTMENT can almost immediately get ahead by starting work on preparing a content schedule to meet critical sales opportunities like CHINESE NEW YEAR or SINGLES DAY. Make hay while the sun shines! WECHAT OA AND CONTENT MARKETING SYSTEMS RCN has created a PLANNER TEMPLATE in Microsoft excel for a marketing manager or digital team to use to plan all China Content Marketing. This incorporates the Chinese Commerce Calendar and your also can integrate your own content marketing timeline. We also teach you how to use KAWO FOR CONTENT, which for enterprise level content, will reduce human resource cost by allowing remote collaboration and content automation.
CUSTOMER SERVICE DURING SET UP A trained Red Circle Network team member will be present with online through a ZOOM or MICROSOFT TEAMS video conference and screen sharing call for your REAL TIME APPLICATION. We will make sure to help you prepare all the documents that are needed in the correct formats. If you have everything that you need present, the application is immediate and response within 1-3 working days. If we need to support more documentation collation, then we patiently support you to get the correct documentation together. We hold your hand all the way through the successful approval. We also make handle the payment to Tencent for the WeChat Official Account and this is catered for within the fee schedule. HOW DOES OUR PRICE COMPARE? In USA the average Set up fee is USD$1500.00 including payments. Our fee is USD$350 for WeChat Official Account + USD$149 for Payments set up for a total fee of USD$499 for both. In New Zealand our competitor prices are NZ$500 + GST plus you pay an additional USD$99 to Tencent with application time frames of 4-6 weeks, due to bundling of WeChatPay financial services application with WeChat Official Account. The key point of differentiation to RCN is that we optimise the end to end business process across all China Commerce technology, committing to make sure that integration is seamless and reliable.
WHY THE BUNDLING OF TENCENT
SET UP CAUSES PROBLEMS. We think that bundling the two services, WeChatOA and WeChatPay is a mistake. This is because they are totally different application processes to two very different divisions within Tencent. Tencent also uses one of six China based third party audit companies to actually verify an Official Account. There are nuances to a successful audit, such as the applicant can't verify themselves. Also being able to access customer service people immediately in real time, during the application makes a massive difference to time frames. These are complex, nuanced processes and each has a unique set up pathway, that have very few common connections between the departments. Separating out the application processes makes for a much faster and more simple application process. This results in a big chunk of the WeChat Official Account implementation being very quickly implemented, supporting the Marketing team to get to work immediately.