Forgive this interruption, once again, I bring you another marketing blog. 

Social networking apps are continually being developed and released on the App stores every day. Today we are taking an in-depth look at China’s Weixin.

Weixin (way-shin), a popular Chinese social networking app similar to WhatsApp in the US, and Line in Japan; allows users to send messages, share news, and photos via mobile phone. First introduced to Chinese users in 2011, by 2014 the app had more than 300 million active users in China, Southeast Asia, Europe, and America (Mahoney & Tang, 2017, p. 92). Weixin’s parent company, Tencent, is worth $100 billion on the Hong Kong exchange (Mahoney & Tang, 2017, p. 92).

Described as a combination of Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, and eBay; users can do much more on one platform (Mahoney & Tang, 2017, p. 92). Taking this into consideration, we can see that unlike Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and eBay which allow users limited interactive capabilities, Weixin is more interactive.

Source: Courtney Pierce:

WeChat is a version of Weixin App used in countries outside of mainland China.

The app is designed to be user-friendly and convenient, with some features like voice recording (Mahoney & Tang, 2017, p. 92). Because the app allows users to do so much within the app itself, audiences rarely have to open a mobile browser to conduct web searches, or other mobile apps to make purchases (Mahoney & Tang, 2017, p. 93). 

Weixin continues to release new functionality based on customer satisfaction and audience need (Mahoney & Tang, 2017, p. 93).  

In 2014, just before Chinese New Year, “Qiang Hongbao” (Red Envelope) campaign was introduced, which allowed user to link their bank accounts to their Weixin account. The campaign is a part of Chinese culture during holidays in which red envelopes with money in them are gifted to friends and family. The campaign was well received by users, as it encouraged them to spend more time and money. The end result was nearly 5 million users participating and sending out 20 million cash-filed envelopes virtually (Mahoney & Tang, 2017, p. 94).

Weixin’s success is owed to the way the app was designed, the added features and features in development. This indicates how the app is integrated into everyday activities, therefore making life somewhat easier. 


Mahoney, L. M., & Tang, T. (2017). Strategic Social Media: From Marketing to Social Change.  Chichester, West Sussex, United Kingdom: Wiley Blackwell.

One thought on “Weixin, China’s Popular Social Networking App

  1. This blog was very enjoyable to read. Great job! I specifically like your choice of visuals and the order of information presented. Great use of white space and easy to keep readers entertained. It will also be very interesting to see how mobile apps change from here on out. I’m interested to see what apps like Venmo and Cash App do to stay relevant if big social media giants start getting involved their industry. It may be their only choice to create partnerships with other brands. I look forward to reading your next work.


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