The next phase of “conversational business.”
The Translation Bureau is a compilation team that focuses on technology, business, workplace, life and other fields, focusing on foreign new technologies, new ideas, and new trends.
Editor’s note: More and more companies are focusing on the commercialization of social traffic. In China, this is called a kind of private domain traffic, and it is getting more and more attention. How do companies use the community to realize it? How to play private domain traffic? Recently, the famous venture capital institution A16Z published an article on the blog, detailing how China uses the community to realize it. The original title is “How China is Cashing in on Group Chats” by “Connie Chan”. The article is compiled by the Translation Bureau and I hope to bring you inspiration.
A sunny afternoon in April this year, a Chinese teenager, nicknamed Gallen, is hiking in Bali, looking for something to go where he can go.
But he didn’t seek crowdsourcing advice through TripAdvisor (too time consuming), nor did he browse content on local geotags on Instagram (too inaccurate). Instead, Galen seeks recommendations from other nearby travelers through a group of WeChat groups organized by online travel provider Ctrip.
This Chinese company’s virtual tour management program (VTM) uses WeChat group chat to provide real-time services to customers.
Ctrip organizes WeChat group chats based on specific destinations, managed by representatives of Ctrip, and members of the group are tourists who travel to the area.
A group chat, Galen and a local Chinese-speaking driver rented a car and spent a day with other solo travelers on Pandava Beach on the southern coast of Bali.
In early 2015, “conversational commerce” was hailed as the future of online shopping.
At the time, the term was often used in technical areas such as shopping robots and voice assistants. But then, the rise of private communications suggests that group chats may be the secret to turning conversations into business opportunities.
Companies in various vertical markets in China, including travel service providersGyms, educational technology startups, and parenting groups are all using private group chat to build trust, interaction, and community, and incorporate brand experiences.
In the United States, the transition from a large social network to a smaller, more segmented group. Even Mark Zuckerberg acknowledged this trend in a blog post this spring, pointing out, “We have seen that private communications, short-lived Stories features and small groups are online. Exchange the fastest growing areas.”
However, although Western groups are usually made up of friends, China offers a variety of companies that use group chat to promote deeper customer relationships and social commerce.
Convert trust to a deal
As per brand has found that user trust is a key metric for turning the web into a trading platform. (This is an important reason why Apple and Amazon can expand into new areas so quickly and create new revenue streams.)
In the West, companies use strategies like end-to-end encryption and real-name enforcement to enhance security. In Asia, instant messaging platforms use a different set of strategies to build trust.
For example, on WeChat, group chats are completely entered through mutual invitations or QR codes, and there is no global search option.
After a group member reaches 100 people, the QR code will automatically expire. After the group expands to this size, users can join the group chat only when they are invited by a friend. The maximum number of people in the group is 500.
This means that even large group chats have a built-in social filter, and anyone joining the group may be a friend of at least one existing group member.
So each group chat is like a secret that only other members know.
Cultivating a sense of security is key. Unlike WhatsApp and Signal, WeChat allows users to use nicknames.
WhatsApp and Signal will disclose the user’s private mobile number to the user community, and chats that are now closed within the Facebook group will also reveal the user’s true identity.
For WeChat, these nicknames act as a privacy protection, allowing users to control how their identity information is displayed.
Although WeChat nickname is hidden from other group users, registration WeChat does require a phone number and real-name authentication, which can prevent anonymous Trojans from malicious attacks.
Another strategy for building trust is to “truncate messages.” Newcomers who join WeChat or WhatsApp group chats can’t see any previous information, which gives existing group chat members a feeling of privacy being protected.
Once the brand builds trust among users, they can use these social networks to generate new revenue streams in all areas..
Customer service chat has become very popular on modern e-commerce sites and can be easily implemented with third-party software.
But group chat on instant messaging software can help transform traditional customer service into a crowdsourced concierge service.
Ctrip’s VTM program, for example, is used for 10 million trips in 2017 and 14 million trips in 2018.
Common concierge services in group chats organized by the VTM program include pick-up, appointments, travel planning, spa and restaurant reservations, and more. This group chat allows Ctrip to sell sales services and share relevant information in a public rather than commercial way.
In addition, Chinese tourists can also get extra services from a bilingual service representative. In the Las Vegas shootings in October 2018, Ctrip quickly positioned visitors to Las Vegas through VTM and provided them with return flights the following day.
A visitor asks Ctrip’s group chat person who should bring a power plug.
Another visitor asked Ctrip’s group chat person how to play a local taxi.
A mobile phone was stolen during a tour, and Ctrip told him how to contact the local police.
Academic and non-academic studies can use private group chat to interact with students, and students can be mutually motivated.
English learning application English fluently uses WeChat group to assist in the course. After the user purchases a course, the students will be invited to join a WeChat group, including teachers and about 100 students.
The teacher will arrange new activities every day, such as mock interviews, learning lyrics, or playing like Solitaire games. These group chats are not only a social component of the one-on-one tutoring application, but also promote relationships between students beyond the scope of the course.
The teacher who speaks English fluently launched a solitaire game.
Similarly, the fitness brand super orangutans that have already raised 60 million have also used the WeChat group chat to establish an offline relationship between fitness enthusiasts.
When a user signs up for a super orangutan’s fitness class, they receive a QR code from the instructor’s WeChat and are pulled into the course’s chat group.
In the group, the super orangutan coach will share class photos, nutrition tips, playlists, and more.
There will also be interactions between students – about dancing together, reselling courses and chatting.
Super Orangutans don’t need a monthly or annual membership card, it relies on these “online classrooms” group chat to retain customers.
People who regularly work with fitness publish photos, resell course information, etc. in the Super Orangutan WeChat group.
At the same time, American companies are beginning to pay attention to the application of group chat in education.
Lambda School is a San Francisco-based startup that offers free online technical training. It uses Slack to form a group chat. In a group chat, Lambda students can complete the project together, or they can ask questions directly to classmates or administrators.
Other LambdaSchool’s Slack Channels (groups) are designed to provide long-term value beyond programming: there are statewide groups to help students establish offline links, as well as groups that offer career advice; An incentive group called “Job Search”, many students post selfies and