When it comes to engaging Chinese mobile consumers, top digital-native apps like WeChat attract more attention than brand-owned ones. Smart marketers are starting to borrow mobile moments rather than create their own. So how can you pursue a similar strategy? My most recent brief, The Power Of Borrowed Mobile Moments, provides marketers with the guidance needed to successfully borrow mobile moments.

Forrester defines a mobile moment as a point in time and space when someone pulls out a mobile device to get what they want in their immediate context. Mobile moments are the key to winning the mobile battle, as they create an opportunity to transform consumers’ perception of a brand. For B2C marketers in China, the opportunity is great — the country is the world's largest smartphone market — but so is the challenge: Chinese consumers have extremely high expectations when it comes to mobile services.

Our research indicates that, of the different types of mobile moments, borrowed moments are the most essential to winning over Chinese consumers. There are a few reasons for this:

  • WeChat and a few mega-apps dominate consumers’ mobile moments. Metro Chinese consumers already spend more than half of their mobile Internet time on WeChat. A few other popular apps, such as Didi Dache and MeituPic, have attracted hundreds of millions of users and enjoy high daily usage.
  • “Owned” mobile moments are less likely to work in China. The country’s relatively slow mobile Internet speeds have shaped consumers’ preference for data-light apps and resistance to downloading and using individual brand apps.
  • Top Chinese apps have evolved to provide more features that marketers can borrow from. For example, WeChat has developed several advanced features — including public accounts, timeline ads, and APIs — that go beyond standard messaging and advertising opportunities.

Some other questions you should be asking yourself as you pursue a strategy based on borrowing mobile moments include:

  • What types of borrowed mobile moments are effective marketers typically using?
  • How can I identify and select the right mobile apps — beyond WeChat — to borrow mobile moments from?
  • How can I turn these borrowed moments into brand assets?

To learn more about engaging Chinese consumers by borrowing mobile moments from top Chinese apps, Forrester clients can read the full brief here.