In November 2022, Aurelien Rigart, Co-founder & Vice President at IT Consultis (ITC), joined BFM Business to review the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the different challenges e-Commerce brands have been facing in China before and during the border re-opening.
Below are the 4 key takeaways from the discussion:
Brands that will win in China are those that invest smartly and consistently in building loyalty and a privately-owned database.
By personalizing the customer experience via targeting and retargeting strategies, brands can maximize the Customer’s Lifetime Value (LTV) and build a loyal following powered by active engagements and re-purchases.
How? They need to develop their own database and continuously enrich their targeted user personas to more accurately tailor customer nurturing approaches.
Clienteling through WeCom is becoming one of the key elements for brands to maximize sales.
With its interoperability with the WeChat ecosystem and versatile clienteling features, WeCom (used to be WeChat Work) is a powerful tool for businesses to establish an official channel or portal to personalize communication and build long-term relationships with the most high-value customers.
While Tmall, JD.com, and other public traffic marketplaces are the preferred routes for many brands to enter the China market due to the high exposure and campaign opportunities, these channels and offline retail alone are no longer enough for brands to succeed in China in the long run.
In addition, brands also need to leverage private traffic channels, especially the WeChat ecosystem, to make sure they:
Many brands coming to China are often approached by local Chinese vendors that do not have their best interest in mind.
While most are aware of how different the digital system in China is, they may still get locked into closed-source solutions by tech vendors that discredit all global solutions, including those that actually work in China (e.g. Magento, Adobe Commerce, Drupal, Acquia, etc.)
However, brands are slowly but surely moving away from having their entire brands managed by a distributor or a Tmall Partner (TP) in China.
For their digital transformation roadmap, companies should connect with true Subject Matter Experts to learn what works best for their specific business needs and long-term strategic expansions.
This would also allow them to easily switch partnering vendors and avoid getting locked in a disadvantageous system.
ITC would like to extend our warmest gratitude to Erwan Morice and BFM Business for the opportunity to appear in the program.