Online marketing to Chinese tourists

If you are a regular reader of our blog, you will know that China has a huge number of internet users. With nearly half a billion smart phone users, and the willingness of the Chinese population to use the internet for more and more, online marketing is becoming ever more vital to connect with this large audience. You need to make sure you’re doing the right things to connect with Chinese tourists. They may want to come to your travel destination to experience your sights and culture, but if you can’t engage with them in the way they expect and respond to, no good will come of your efforts.

Travel marketing in China using Sina Weibo

Sina Weibo is the Chinese equivalent of Twitter, and is rapidly encouraging businesses and public bodies to engage with the public in new ways. It represents the relaxing in the control over people’s internet use and the censorship of communications. Even government officials have started creating Sina Weibo accounts, and the official account of the Chinese government received 100,000 followers within two hours of being set up(Source:

This activity shows that the Chinese consumer is not only active online, but is also eager to engage with brands, businesses, and public figures. Sina Weibo already has impressive usage statistics. It has 500 million users, making 100 million posts per day. Enterprise accounts on the site number more than 130,000, and British Airways has an account. Companies in your industry are already taking advantage of Sina Weibo to engage the huge potential market of Chinese tourists. The official account for Visit Britain has over 348,000 followers, as does.

Travel marketing in China using Tencent WeChat

WeChat is a mobile text and voice messaging communication service developed by Tencent in China, first released in January 2011. WeChat provides multimedia communication with text messaging, hold-to-talk voice messaging, broadcast (one-to-many) messaging, photo/video sharing, location sharing and contact information exchange. WeChat is not only a mobile app, but one of the most popular digital marketing channels in China having 600 million users base which the western companies can not ignore.

WeChat can provide another convenient way for your Chinese costumers to book hotel rooms. Vienna Hotel Group, a chain hotels with over 480 branch hotels in about 80 cities in China, set up its Wechat public account offering a comprehensive booking service, connected with online booking system. Except for booking rooms via Wechat public account, consumers could also search for points, order and discount information. Once you finish booking a room, your mobile will receive a confirmation message.

The importance of interacting with the culture

Social media enables you to interact directly with your target market, and allows you to demonstrate the various ways in which you appeal to them. In any industry, there are certain times which can be especially good for business. Last year, the Golden Week national holiday boosted numbers of overseas visitors (Source:, as Chinese tourists took the opportunity to travel abroad. It is these kind of cultural events, holidays, and local news, that social media allows you to keep up with and use to engage your followers. It allows you to keep up to date, at the same time as keeping your followers up-to-date.

There’s never been a better time to get social

Chinese consumers are embracing social media in order to interact with each other and the brands and companies they love. The success and popularity of big-name travel brands such as Visit Britain showed that Chinese social media users are ready and eager to engage with foreign companies. Being on Sina Weibo and Tencent WeChat allows you to get close to your target market, earn their trust and their loyalty, and prove yourself to them.

For more information, or to discuss your Chinese travel marketing plans, get in touch with us today.

(Image source: “Ruins Of St. Paul’s Cathedral” |