The major social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, Youtube, Google, Instagram are blocked by the Chinese Government to users in China. You may dismiss China’s own social media platforms as copies of their western counterparts but if you are looking to enter the Chinese market, you will need to be on these platforms.
Social media marketing in China is a little different from that of the western world and ideally, you should take the help of a Chinese digital marketing agency to increase your visibility.
Weibo and WeChat are very popular social media platforms in China and Baidu is China’s equivalent of Google. The social media platforms in China do not directly influence organic search results on Baidu, though there is often a strong correlation between high performing social accounts and high ranking sites on Baidu. This means a link from a social media site will not give the target URL an organic rankings boost. But some platforms like Weibo are indexed by Baidu. As a result, social media pages can receive organic rankings.
Let us now discuss what social media marketing tactics can help with the ranking:
1. Be adept at Weibo Marketing
Weibo has a significant role to play as regards to social media marketing in China. As already mentioned, Weibo’s content is indexed by Baidu. The content appears as snippets on the Baidu search engine result pages. This allows users to see your Weibo page and content when searching for your brand or offerings. Due to Weibo’s integration with the Baidu search, you should pay attention to Weibo from an SEO perspective.
Social media profiles tend to rank quite well on Google when users search for brand terms. On Baidu, that always may not be the case. If you want your Weibo page to show up on Baidu when someone searches for your brand, your Weibo page’s name must match your brand name. For non-branded terms, Baidu will look at the quality and quantity of followers of the Weibo account.
Also, the more content your page has and the more frequently the page is updated, the more the chances of the content being ranked higher. You should insert keywords in the page description and consider adding relevant tags to your page and to each piece of content that you post. Lastly, remember that verified accounts on Weibo tend to rank better on Baidu.
2. Indulge in WeChat Marketing
WeChat has a lot of extensive features that offer a lot of opportunities to digital marketers in China. However, as far as most search engines are concerned, WeChat is completely opaque. So activities on WeChat will have no direct effect on Baidu SEO at all. However, the search engine Sogou is an exception. It has exclusive access to index WeChat content. Though the market share of Sogou is much less than that of Baidu.
3. Link to Foreign Social Media platforms
Since China officially blocks access to foreign social media platforms so it is widely believed that linking to sites like Twitter, Facebook and YouTube would negatively impact search rankings because sending users to blocked sites creates a poor user experience. However, data suggests that links to these blocked social media platforms instead of having a negative impact in fact have a slightly positive impact on Baidu search engine ranking.
4. Ensure your Website leads visitors to Chinese Social Media Platforms
Almost all websites that rank on the first page of Baidu search results have at least one reference of a Chinese social media platform. Chinese social media platforms are very popular when it comes to communicating with brands in China. So, it is not surprising that they are so commonly referenced on high ranking pages.
5. Be active on Zhihu
Zhihu is China’s equivalent of Quora. You must have noticed how often Quora posts appear in search results on Google. Similarly, Zhihu posts also appear in search results on Baidu. Starting a discussion on Zhihu regarding your brand and providing useful information to users can greatly improve your presence on search engines.
There are many social media platforms in China but the ones discussed in this article play a significant role in social media marketing in China. Do you have any questions about social media marketing in China?