Establishing and Managing YVR’s WeChat and Weibo Presence

Project Description

Vancouver International Airport (YVR), a logical port of entry for travellers from China offering 111 direct flights weekly, wanted to target audiences in Mainland China as well as Canadian Chinese.​ In particular, YVR wanted to better reach travellers using Chinese language to facilitate their travel experience and to encourage them to use and explore YVR’s services. With 408,415 residents in British Columbia speaking Chinese as their mother tongue, offering Chinese customer service is essential for the airport. But some challenges had to be overcome.

YVR’s website and all major Western social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are blocked in Mainland China. LAT established YVR’s presence on the two most popular Chinese social media platforms registering accounts for YVR on Weibo in February 2015 and WeChat in May 2016. To grow followers on both Chinese platforms, LAT’s team produces high quality articles and marketing campaigns throughout the year. Knowing also that many Chinese travellers do not feel comfortable interacting in English, we provided 24/7 customer service through WeChat to respond to questions in Chinese.

RESULTS

YVR followers increased from 0 to 123,000 on Weibo and from 0 to 8,530 on WeChat. One post involving Hong Kong Airline’s new flight to YVR went “viral” generating 3.01 million views. When YVR was named Skytrax’ best airport in North America for the ninth consecutive year, LAT launched a Weibo campaign that generated 2.95 million impressions with 12,705 reposts, 13,734 comments and 5,842 likes.