Weibo is frequently called the China’s version of Twitter. It is a powerful digital communications and marketing channel. Use of this real-time microblogging social technology in China has been unprecedented, and companies have a unique opportunity to use Weibo to reach and engage new audiences in China. Users cover a broad swath of China’s internet population, including youth, domestic and international celebrities, CEOs, professionals, and media personalities.
Here we want to speak a little bit about some useful features of this huge platform, which we have got from our KOL-clients and partners. These will increase engagement and numbers of followers for any Weibo account. We use it, we love it, we want to share it with you.
Yes, Weibo also makes use of hashtags. However, they are a little different from the hashtags we are used to on the Western social media. To make a hashtag on Weibo, we have to put the hashtag symbol (#) both before and after the word. For example, #Weibo#.
Hot hashtags and topics can create a circulation of relevant content. Here you might catch the ride and increase the visibility of your brand. But, because of the specifics of the Chinese language, these topics are actual phrases, titles, news lines. It’s not keywords, as we get used to.
It’s actual questions and situations, which updated every minute. Keep it in mind and play with it.
Chaohua超话 Super topics
There is another feature called “Super Topic”, which is commonly used by celebrities as it gathers related posts shared by other users (mostly fans), similar to a hashtag. For example, as Huang Bo is an actor, the super topic under his name includes several discussions, pictures and videos related to him.
Unlike a hashtag, a “Super Topic” has its own page with dedicated moderators. “Super Topics” allow users to discuss a certain topic and post relevant content to the page, and since it is actively moderated it can provide more valuable information than a standard hashtag. Within “Super Topics” there are some unique features, including “essential content” and the “hall of fame” where content is manually selected by moderators to be featured for users visiting the “super topic.”
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Super topics can also be about places, specific topics and interest. People share here their ideas, content and post questions. And they are ready to engage. The thing is to find “alive” and relevant to you.
Be careful when posting in Super topics. It’s better to uncheck “同步到微博” before posting content, so you won’t dabble post it in your page at the same time with Super topic’s page. Anyway, you can always find your post on Super topic in the 超话社区 in the mobile app.
At Weibo you can send not only directed message tête-à-tête but also participate in massive group chats (up to 1000 users). They usually are created around one topic: lifestyle, celebrities, sport, etc. Also for hufen which we will discuss later.
Here you can promote your post (share it) if it’s relevant. And also directly go to your target with direct messages.
Group chats have their group Weibo page – similar to Suter topic, but more closed
When we speak about growing number of followers FAST, Hufendatin is the first tool, that comes to mind. The main idea is in the mutual following. Different users, with different interests and targets, come here to ask for 互粉互赞互评 (mutual fans, mutual likes, mutual comments).
You follow, they follow you back. You “like”, they “like” back. You comment, they comment back. This easy, this fast, this time consuming, actually. But be confident, most of them are as real as you are. (But how real are you? As for us, there are at least 3 “us” in Weibo)
Actually, 互粉大厅 is the name for one of the first and biggest Super Topics for mutual following. But there are many others. You can easily find them at Weibo by yourself, just searching for something like 互粉 or 互关. Go there with a small piece of content, ask for following and follow people, who are already there.
Also, there are plenty of group chats, which are working much better, but taking more time and concentration. They also are easy to find at Weibo app, in your chat list. Highly recommend you to mute them immediately, because too many messages appear every second. When we follow people in these chats, we @ them in the message and ask them to follow back.
There we work not only for numbers but also for connections. The thing is that there are so much different people, and you never know who will come next, after so many advertising, sweet girls and anime-lovers.
Your target audience is there, and moreover – it is the active part of your target.
Apart from standard posts on Weibo, users can also hold live streaming sessions or upload “Weibo stories”, which are pretty similar to Instagram stories.
The story function allows users to upload a 15-second video/story that disappears from “story” section after 24 hours but will be still at your main page. You can easily recognize these features from other popular social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, etc.
Users can comment on others’ Weibo stories, “like” and reshare them.
Weibo has a lot of challenges for Stories. And you can take part in them. You should, actually, if your content suits it.
It is a topic (hashtag), which appears at the top of news feeds (at the mobile version), where everyone can share their story and the more views they get, the “hotter” story becomes.
Similar to TikTok challenges it’s a good way to get visibility and ideas for new content.
When you use @ with the user’s nickname, that user will get a notification about your post.
This strategy could be quite aggressive, but this way you ask someone to check your content. And if your content is relevant and interesting – you will get a like or comment, or even re-sharing.
With one good @ you can get thousands of views. But this @ should be definitely good. Using this feature is similar to being a sniper. Breath deep, be calm, wait for ideal target and then – shoot.
Bam, you get your views.
After all, we want to note, that Weibo algorithm can punish you for too aggressive posting. Be careful. Try to balance the aggressive promotion of yourself and soft pushes with good content.
Now you have some nice Weibo tools for engagement. As every social media platform Sina Weibo has its own tips and tricks, and for sure they are far different from those we all get used to in Western Social Media. But you need to master them if you want to be pro in Chinese digital word. Tools we mentioned in this article will work for you, as they work for AICY Create and our customers.
Just take your content and go to Chinese social media.
AICY Create, is a leading performance marketing agency based in China, with expertise in Personal Branding and China Digital Marketing.
AICY, Artists on Social Media
Brizzo is a dynamic and energetic investor, marketing strategist, musician and online reputation specialist. He is the Co-Founder of AICY Create, https://www.aicy-create.com/, a leading marketing agency based in China, with expertise in Personal Branding and China Digital Marketing.