Getting Started On Sina Weibo

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Image Courtesy of Cedric Sam

With over 591 million total internet users, China is a massive online market. For international businesses seeking to expand their global reach, localizing your social media strategy for the Chinese audience is vital.

More importantly, since the western social networks like Facebook, Twitter, and Youtube are blocked in China, businesses need to be on local Chinese social networks like Sina Weibo to build online communities.

Why Sina Weibo?

Sina Weibo is one of the most popular social media platforms in China with 503 million registered users and 54 million active users each day. Almost half of the top global 500 companies have set up Sina Weibo presences to reach out to the Chinese audience.

Weibo is not simply the Chinese version of Twitter, but rather an intelligent hybrid of some key social media functionalities, including:

  • Powerful blogging service that allows direct comments and conversations between brands and consumers
  • E-commerce that allows retailers to set up product catalogues directly to their Weibo accounts
  • Twitter-like functions  such as the 140 character limits and ‘followers’
  • Instant messaging
  • Embedded multimedia
  • Numerous app integrations

Getting Started on Sina Weibo

First off, get verified on Sina Weibo. A verification badge (see circle in the image) assures the identity and authority of a brand. Given China’s consumer culture, people are hesitant to trust the validity of brands online. As a result, Sina Weibo’s thorough verification badge process ensures consumer confidence.

Second, differentiate your brands by customizing the profile backgrounds. You can do so by using the editing tools such as:

  • Add a rolling header
  • Add and pin videos to the top of the page
  • Provide contact information to drive website traffic

More information about how to verify Sina Weibo account can be found here.

3 Quick Tips to Build Your Sina Weibo Presence

  • Take advantage of rich media functionalities offered by Weibo – image editing, photo collage, emoticon, video and music sharing to make the post more engaging and appealing to the audience.
  • Use Trends Categorization function to find out hot hashtags and topics on Sina Weibo, and create relevant content to catch the ride and increase the visibility of your brand.
  • Sina Weibo’s new Subscription function enables brands to broadcast specific direct messages to their chosen followers in order to build a strong relation between brand and customer. Customize content for particular audience group to increase the engagement and customer loyalty.

Stay tuned with more news about Chinese social media via @HootSuite_CN or connect with us on Sina Weibo.

Get started on Sina Weibo today, download Sina Weibo in the HootSuite App Directory.