Social messaging is one of the predicted trends for India in 2013 and the proliferation of social messaging business in Asia Pac is well known. WeChat, the mobile messaging service from the Chinese Internet giant Tencent, has been one of the names doing the media rounds for all the good reasons in India. The mobile messaging service has been pushing the app in India from the first half of 2012 along with Ibibo in which it holds 20% stake.
The app is again in the news for two big reasons:
1) The mobile communication app claims to have surpassed the 300 million mark in number of users.
2) And the app has now launched a Blackberry compatible version according to WatBlog.com.
WeChat and its steep growth in Asia Pac
The messaging app touched the remarkable feet of 300 million user mark, just a week before its second birthday. Launched on January 21, 2011, it also claims to have added 100 million users in the course of just 4 months. All these figures boil down to a known fact that the Asian market has become competitive for all social messaging apps. Specially the Chinese market has been dominated by Sina’s Weibo and WeChat. Though Sina has admitted that WeChat has been providing stiff competition and users spend more time on WeChat.
WeChat and its growth in India
Along with the Asia Pac market, WeChat has also focused recently on the Indian market. The focus has been in dual mode. At one end the app has added Indian user centric features and the other end it has integrated with brands on the marketing aspect to create the buzz.
Along with its existing cool features like video chat, the app has introduced features like Hindi language support and Java based versions to be able to run on feature phones. Prior to it’s launch on the Blackberry platform, the app launched QR codes, an identical feature for which Blackberry has been quite famous that identifies users and adds them in the group.
On the marketing end, WeChat recently tied up with the latest Bollywood film – “Matru ki Bijlee ka Mandola.” The social media marketing campaigns were designed in a way that users had to use the app to crack the contest and stand a chance to meet the leading star cast Imran Khan and Anushka Sharma and also win goodies such as free movie tickets. A smart move by the company to attract the youth who are either unaccustomed to mobile messaging apps or are hooked onto apps like Whatapp, which holds a stronger base in India.
2013 definitely looks exciting for mobile messaging apps and Whatapp along with other messaging apps in the same space face a stiff competition from WeChat.
Slider image courtesy: hanzbr.blogspot.in