WeChat vs Weibo: Chinese social media part 1

Did you get any red packets over the Chinese New Year season? What astounded me this Chinese New Year was that WeChat had more mobile transactions (in the form of virtual red packets) during the festive season than PayPal had during the entire 2015! WeChat is no doubt powering a mobile commerce boom in China and it is hard to comprehend the scale of it all.

A question I get asked a lot:

Should I use WeChat, Weibo, or both?

Today, I’ll give you a breakdown of the differences between Weibo and WeChat to help you decide how they can meet your business needs.

Weibo “MicroBlogging”

  • Owned by Sina
  • Accessed via PC and mobile – content open to all users
  • One-to-all broadcast
  • Stronger transmission capacity to a broader audience
  • Frequent updates featuring immediate distribution of information
  • Limit of 280 western characters (140 Chinese ones) and up to 9 embedded photos and 1 video
  • Use of hashtags

WeChat “MicroMessaging”

  • Owned by Tencent
  • Normally accessed on mobile devices – only reach subscribers
  •  One-to-one communication
  • Privacy and communication between friend circles
  • 1 push message with up to 8 rich content tweets per day allowing in-depth knowledge and information sharing
  • No limit on word count, photos or videos
  • Fastest growing social media platform in China

In summary, Weibo works like a concert stadium and WeChat functions more like small private karaoke rooms.

Weibo WeChat comparison

What does that mean for your business? Which platform is better for you? Should you use one, or both?  It depends on what your priorities are.

In Part 2, we will discuss how WeChat is geared for personal communication, while Weibo is designed for new discovery. Stay tuned!

And if you want to set up a WeChat or Weibo account but don’t know how, give Baker Marketing a call and we can get right on to it for you.

Image by Mark Gamtcheff.