How to Grow Your Online Presence in China for Tourism and Hospitality Sectors
Do you see an increase in Chinese visitors in your city? Do you receive more web traffic from Chinese users? Do you have a website or social media channels, and you want to reach out to more Chinese tourists?
If you answer yes to these questions, better read below and learn how you can grow your online presence in China. Even if you’re not physically in the Mainland, there are opportunities for you.
An overview of Chinese outbound tourism these days
According to China Outbound Tourism Market to GCC Countries and Forecast to 2026, the China outbound tourism market size to GCC countries is expected to generate revenues of more than US$ 9 billion by 2026.
The GCC countries include Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and United Arab Emirates (UAE).
Meanwhile, there’s a growing trend among the aged called medical tourism. Chinese tourists, most of them are baby boomers and old generation, are interested in various medical services abroad. They travel for routine check-ups and medical procedures in Japan, Thailand, and South Korea. These countries are among the top destinations, including Taiwan and India.
3 practical ways to grow your online presence on China internet
There’s no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to increasing your online presence on China internet. There will always be trends and developments in terms of how consumers use apps and tools.
But if you want more guests to visit your property, these three practical, yet replicable steps can help you build brand awareness.
There’s no guarantee that you’ll achieve your goals quickly. However, if you do it right with the support of a team who knows the nooks and crannies of China internet, you’ll see the results.
#1 Sign-up on OTAs to generate bookings and translate your content
Airbnb, TripAdvisor, Homeaway are some of the popular online travel agencies (OTA) overseas. Chinese netizens have access to these OTAs where there’s a high probability they can find your property. In China, there are also local equivalents such as Ctrip, Qunar, Meituan-Dianping, and Tujia (like Airbnb).
Ctrip and Qunar are two of the most popular apps among Chinese younger travelers. Your first step is to determine which of these platforms will fit your business needs. Consider also how these OTAs algorithms work to get you on top of the results when guests search for property and tourist destinations.
Action plan: If you already have English versions of content from your OTAs, you can start translating in Chinese. Materials can include property descriptions, places to visit, and things to do in your areas.
#2 Maximise WeChat to communicate with tourists and guests
WeChat remains a universal app among Chinese tourists. They use it too to gather more information about places and things to do on their next vacation. Within the app, the users can also book hotels and flights without going out of the app itself.
If you have a consistent number of guests coming from the Mainland, setting up a WeChat account for business will also help you grow your online presence. It will be easier for your guests to share content with their friends.
Action plan: No idea how to set up a WeChat account for business? The LIMPID team can help you set up and manage your account. The team will also provide you guidance and tips on how to effectively use the app to engage with your guests.
#3 Publish short videos on Chinese social media channels
Last but not least, short video apps are shaping the way users consume content online. This development should be considered as well as Douyin is one of the most widely used short video apps among Chinese netizens. With the short attention span of people these days, publishing short, yet compelling videos can go viral if done right with local partners.
Luxury retailer brands are already maximizing its features for marketing and communication to end-users. And while the premise that Douyin’s ability to generate substantial revenue for long-term is yet to be proven, the opportunity for exposure exists. Other companies also work with KOLs (Key Opinion Leaders) on Douyin, although they have to pay more to sustain such arrangements.
Action plan: If you’re thinking of putting your hotel or villa on Douyin, make sure you have prepared short videos that you can upload and share with followers. You don’t have to invest in expensive HD videos. However, you can work with LIMPID social media specialists so you can discuss how you’d like to proceed. Short video apps are likely to stay for 2020 and beyond. Using these apps for marketing is something that should be well-thought and plan ahead.