Amalgam Collection: Using Niche WeChat Groups to Market Luxury Collectibles
Using WeChat to Build a B2C Market in China
Amalgam Collection beautifully fashions unrivalled models of the world’s most iconic luxury cars. Each model is a work of art, and key customers include automotive designers, engineers, manufacturers, world-famous drivers and private collectors. Demand for premium vehicles continues to grow in China with a projected annual growth rate of 11.3% through to 2023, so it is no surprise that car-lovers are seeking new ways to engage with their passion. Prior to our partnership with Amalgam, the brand had a strong B2B market in China, but next to no official brand presence.
Amalgam’s main priorities for their presence on Chinese social commerce were to build a direct B2C (business to consumer) market to increase profit margins, and to establish direct contact with interested customers.
Although the company has a workshop in Dongguan, China and a distributor in Hong Kong, Amalgam was apprehensive about entering Mainland China - a vast and diverse market. Acting in a consultancy role, our team of account managers created a social commerce strategy, aimed at creating a strong WeChat presence, and engaging with the right customers for this rather niche product.
We first created a WeChat official account for Amalgam. We advised against the name they originally chose - 车模 - as although it directly translates to ‘model car,’ it also implies the scantily-clad female models traditionally used to advertise cars. Having decided to create a clear brand identity by using the name Amalgam Collection for the WeChat official account, we continue to manage the account, producing high-quality content.
Recognising the high-class, niche nature of the product, we then sourced several influencers who had previously spoken about Amalgam on their social channels. We worked with 爱车模精选 (Car Model Lover Club), a WeChat influencer with over 75,000 followers, who wrote a WeChat article about Amalgam. He then shared the article along with the official account’s QR code in several WeChat groups he managed. These groups were all made up of model car lovers, so offered a perfect audience for Amalgam. Entering these niche groups (known as 私域流量 in China) is the goal of every marketer, as they offer a pre-made audience of self-identified potential customers at a relatively low cost. However, due to the private nature of these groups, gaining access can be very challenging. We’ve found working with specific Chinese KOLs (Key Opinion Leaders) is a great way to access these interested customers and connect with them in a meaningful way.
Amalgam's WeChat official account gained 1000 new followers over the 6 week campaign period - extremely impressive for a new account with a modest marketing spend. What’s more, the account received over 50 messages from interested potential buyers - as we also manage Amalgam’s customer service on WeChat, we were able to answer their questions and point them in the right direction. In total, 18 leads have been generated in this way. As a result of targeting consumers with a self-identified interest in the product, Amalgam's WeChat articles continue to receive a high level of reads and engagement. Working with Amalgam has been great, creating their social commerce presence in China, and developing innovative and successful ways to excite consumers about their models.