As global relocation and international property sales recover from the pandemic’s sucker punch, wealthy Chinese buyers are showing renewed interest in Western investment. A lucrative market means the need to differentiate. As an overseas broker or agent, how can you provide a winning customer experience when it comes to courting this profitable sector?
The answer is WeChat. This wildly popular social networking app is ubiquitous across all social strata of Chinese society, meaning the most affluent buyers are all but guaranteed to be active on and familiar with the platform. China boasts 897 million mobile internet users, of which 91 million are seeking property via online searches. With 80% of China’s high net worth individuals being regular WeChat users, the platform represents a huge opportunity for real estate agents ready to harness its significant sales power.
Selling Western Property To Chinese Buyers: Common Barriers
When it comes to selling Western property to Chinese buyers, demand and supply are both high. The disconnect lies in the communication and connection required to build understanding and trust that underpins all successful sales.
Commonly, these manifest as issues around the restrictions placed upon online interactions and information for those in China, coupled with the additional complexities of cultural nuance and a potential language barrier.
For these reasons, the ability to curate compelling customer experiences is all the more important for the Chinese market.
Optimising Customer Journeys by Understanding the Different Types of Chinese Buyers
When considering the way that your customer experiences are designed, it is essential to differentiate between the four main types of property purchasers.
Mainland Chinese residents, looking to purchase property overseas, either as an investment or a residential option.
Chinese migrants living overseas, looking to buy new property in the country they are residing within.
Chinese migrants living overseas and interested in buying property in a new country, aside from their homeland.
Chinese parents who are looking to buy or rent a property for their children who will be studying overseas.
Each of these different buyer types has specific needs and sureties, which sellers should properly research when deciding which target best fits their listing.
What Chinese Buyers Really Want From Their Property Purchase Experience
When navigating a property deal, Chinese customers are looking for two foundational cornerstones. The first of these is respect. An agent who has taken time and care to understand and meet this market’s specific needs and expectations will find themselves at an instant advantage.
This is one of the core reasons that we recommend leveraging WeChat – a platform that is instantly comfortable to Chinese buyers, and shows care and attention has been paid to “meeting them where they are” in a place of reassuring familiarity.
WeChat also helps to ensure the second factor – security. A customer journey supported by WeChat demonstrates use of technology which will be perceived as trustworthy and dependable, helping increase the confidence of your customers when it comes to interactions, data entry and more.
WeChat Tip #1: To Sell Property To Chinese Buyers, Invest in Quality Content
WeChat holds huge potential for businesses who are ready and willing to leverage content strategically. As the preeminent “super social platform” in China, WeChat blends together a number of different channels, all supporting content in a different range of formats, achieving different outcomes.
To learn more about how WeChat channels can support your content marketing efforts, read our recent article.
Understanding how to serve your ideal buyer with quality content is the best way to successfully market listings on WeChat. By providing expert advice, market overviews, high quality listing information (including virtual tours etc) and easy pathways to contact and bookings, agents and realtors alike can create productive funnels to garner and convert buyer interest.
Content on WeChat needs to be maintained. Keeping listings updated and all advice current and timely will be a crucial component of success. A regular cadence of content flowing through all WeChat channels is critical for building and maintaining rapport with your audience.
WeChat Tip #2: Use QR Codes To Grow Followers and Share Listings Seamlessly Across Channels
While QR codes have fallen in and out of favour with a Western audience, they remain a very popular method of information sharing for the Chinese consumer. This makes them ideal for sharing listings or other relevant content on WeChat Groups, WeChat Articles, WeChat moments and more.
By creating shortcuts to additional content or opportunities for engagement via QR codes, you can simultaneously increase your following and funnel visitors to additional content – a great way to push traffic towards your listings.
QR codes are also great for offline to online conversion. This makes them highly suitable for printed marketing materials or display during open houses etc. Visitors will be able to easily scan the codes and continue their interaction and exploration of the property in question on WeChat, improving contact opportunities.
WeChat Tip #3: Mini Programs: The Ultimate Utility For Sales On WeChat
When it comes to converting sales on WeChat, you need a highly functional bottom of funnel strategy that gives your customers the ability to easily perform the desired action: be that booking a viewing or submitting their interest in a property.
Rather than redirecting leads away from the familiarity of WeChat and towards an (expensive) Chinese website, use WeChat Mini Programs to easily add functionality to your funnel. Mini Programs are the easiest and most reliable way of adding forms, payments and many more functions to your WeChat customer journey.
Speak to VIVA CITY if you’re looking to transform your official WeChat account into a full-stack sales solution for the Chinese market via the power of Mini Programs.
Sell Successfully To Chinese Overseas Property Buyers - With WeChat
To conclude with some key takeaways:
Don’t sleep on the power and potential of WeChat as a platform for courting Chinese property and real estate buyers. Meet them on the platform where they are already most active.
Get familiar with creating content to serve and support an active engagement strategy WeChat.Ensure you’re benefiting from the increased interest and engagement with your Chinese market – give your followers an easy way to contact and connect with your firm, accelerating the sales process and outclassing your competition with dependable, adaptable, affordable Mini Program functionality.