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Chance to capture Chinese tourists

A new advertising service has been rolled out in China to help build awareness of Singapore products for Chinese tourists planning to visit the island state.

It is being introduced by International Business Group (IBG), a subsidiary of internet value-added services company Tencent, and includes options for Singaporean retailers to build brand awareness and develop product familiarity for Chinese tourists before they visit, as well as in-market advertisements while they are in Singapore.

Singapore had 1.47 million visitors from China in the first half of this year, up 55.2 per cent from the same period last year, according to the Singapore Tourism Board. Chinese tourists accounted for nearly 18 per cent of the visitors to Singapore during this period.

Aware of the spending potential of these tourists, the Singapore Retailers Association has launched initiatives such as the Singapore Golden Week, timed to coincide with the national holidays in China.

“Singapore is well positioned to benefit from the surge in the number of Chinese tourists,” says Tencent senior director of business development Benny Ho. “Reaching out to Chinese tourists on platforms with which they are familiar is the best approach for local businesses.”

He says brands need to engage early in the Chinese customer journey in order to influence purchase decisions.

Also, retailers can customise Tencent’s International Advertising Solutions to fit specific brand objectives.

800 million-plus users

Meanwhile, an eMarketer study WeChat in China in June found that the two leading social-media sites/chatting apps in China are WeChat and Qzone, both Tencent products.

There are more than 806 million active users for both WeChat and Weixin. GlobalWebIndex (GWI), which studies digital consumer behaviours and trends, has revealed that between the first half of last year and the first half of this year, WeChat nearly doubled its usage rates in Asia Pacific, outside of China.

Weixin’s open platform includes advertising, official accounts and online-to-offline (O2O) payments. Communication app Mobile QQ, social-networking site Mobile Qzone and music service QQ Music also provide a gateway for Singapore advertisers.

WeChat representatives will be available to help merchants in Singapore, while IBG will provide such services as media planning, design, user targeting, ad placement, bid optimisation and reporting.

Key advertising products include the WeChat Official Account Banner Ad, which redirects users to an external URL through a single click, WeChat Moments Ad, a native social feed-style display for a non-disruptive experience, and “Mobile Qzone Friend Newsfeed Ad”, which manifests as either an article or a video and is shown in a similar format as a friend post.

Thus far, Tencent has launched its advertising service across, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia and Taiwan.

Meanwhile, IBG does not have an exclusive partner in Singapore but is seeking partners and resellers.

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