WeChat Global Expansion

Executive summary 

WeChat was developed by Tencent of the Chinese origin. It is an all-around messaging application that charges for those using it. It has its roots from the year 2011 hence it is known and used all over the world by a couple of people as a means of communication through messaging. Its invention is greatly supported since it aims at improving e-commerce especially for countries that depend on it.  As a result of its increased use by citizens especially the youth from around the globe, it needs to be expanded beyond its origin. However before the expansion is done, there is need to first realize and understand the diverse cultural understanding of the different states that use it. 

This paper aims at presenting ways in which the WeChat can be expanded into the different global countries. Different research methods will be used to show the possible ways to used to ensure WeChat expansion and development. The analysis of the information relating to the WeChat globalization will be directly dependent on the Hofstede theory in relation the comparison of other social media applications used in any world country apart from China. Data collection relating to WeChat will basically involve the use of questionnaires with conclusions and recommendations made in relation to the personal view on how the expansion of the WeChat can be achieved globally.

Introduction 

Social applications used in communication are greatly depended especially on the youths to pass out messages to people close to them. Messaging as a means of communication is reliable since it is affordable in terms of the communication costs involved and the privacy of information being conveyed to or between the sender and the receiver. The messaging and sharing applications commonly used are Whatsapp, WeChat, telegram and even Instagram where information of all sorts are shared like images, videos and voice messages. Continued use of these apps in a particular geographical area may demand expansion to a wide area.

 The WeChat, for instance, was developed by Tencent and has been known all over hence being used by many youths in communicating out their ideas. However, there is need to increase its fame to enhance effective and efficient communication. This can only be achieved through an extra effort made by its inventor in realizing the kinds and types of countries to be expanded to. This is in terms of networking and the availability of users or customers. The type of cultural beliefs in a certain country should also be considered. If this is done appropriately, then WeChat will counter other social communication apps and will be most preferable to the others. It has shown tremendous growth since its introduction due to the range of products and services added on it presented in different designs.  The designs appeal to many users, consumers and business enterprises. The appeal comes as a result of low payments the formality of the accounts, the payment options, the online and the offline characteristics which are convenient to the consumers. However, this can be well utilized based on the number of consumers using it. It therefore needs to be expanded from the home to the external markets to serve a larger and tangible population. This will help counter the poor services provided by its competitors. 

The use of the online surveys and questionnaires is critical in finding information relating to social networking apps and how relevant they are for diversified groups of people in different states. Samples social networking apps are chosen that work in similar ways as the WeChat and compared to their usability and the number of people conversant with it in terms of new updates concerning it. In terms of the order of direct correlation, the most directly linked apps are chosen compared to the population and their affordability in a certain geographical setting. The questionnaires used may deliver accurate information relating to the way a particular social app is preferred by its users and how affordable it is, and the general impact it has on the economy of the specific state hence the world of technological innovation. 

The responses are presented on the online platforms. This means that participants are found on a random basis from across the globe. Particular instruments are used and specific methods involved in finding the responses based on the availability and adaptability of a particular social networking app. The survey questions form the greatest part of the survey in collecting relevant information through the use of statistical inferences relating to a specific population under study. The general opinion of the social networking app users is examined and either quantified or qualified. The small populations that give responses to the presented questions are seen as the representation of the entire world population that uses social network apps. In the surveys also, response follow-up techniques are included to gauge the respondents’ understanding of how social apps work. Through the use of the surveys, the technical information relating to the use of apps and their updates is portrayed. However, the choice of the samples should be directly dependent on certain factors like the general costs to be incurred, the total number of people who will be reached during the information process, “how easy and possible it may be in ensuring flexibility of asking questions, the attitude of the respondents in giving their answers and how accurate the answers are given may be in relation to social networking apps especially the WeChat app.

To ensure the set goals are achieved, a specific online sample of users is identified and selected as the potential members of focus. Those who are able to use the WeChat app and can easily be reached on the same platform can be consulted to present their views relating to the topic under study. However, those who cannot be reached but accessible to other social networking apps like the mails can post their views over there. The responses given need to be evaluated in relation to the topic of concern. The data collected will then be checked to enhance the accuracy of the information in relation to the intended needs of the research. In this case, therefore, the different ways presented by the active social network users will help in finding the gaps that need to be filled and if any ways possible that can help achieve the expansions aims of the WeChat app in the global market by including certain specific features that may appeal the users. 

Discussions 

WeChat can move to greater heights in other countries through cultural sharing and understanding in terms of different perceptions in the use of social networking and behaviour of the users. Based on the culture of any country, the use of a particular society is valued the most by members of that state. There is a need for conferences to be organized in several countries of the world aimed at creating awareness. This will open up the knowledge about WeChat to diverse groups in the world and ensure and it will be preferred compared to other social communication messaging apps.  However, this cannot be forced to the cultures that do not value it hence for those countries that value it more can be greatly focused on based on their own cultures (Ye and Ma, 2017).

A first approach needs to be taken by the inventors of the app to provide tangible reasons as to why the WeChat app should be adopted in preference of the other apps. This means that the app should be in a position to be used as both mobile and other electronic devices like the computers. It needs to base in all circles of the social communication platforms with reduced and affordable charges to everyone. This will aim at curbing the competitive nature of the others especially in the rates used and the number of people who prefer using it. The approach should focus on a large geographical area both within and without the country China (Bereznoi, 2015). In this first approach, the app should not only include the messaging use of the app but also consider the things that are mostly done by the users when using a particular app. This may include the games and even communicating through the sharing of images and videos.  

The app needs also to include transactions that are done online like games with an aim of keeping everything on its equal platform. The features can now be used and accepted in the international world and in the same way increasing its demand. This will create a need to establish new offices in the countries where the app has a wide range of users. Apart from games, there can be other features like online food ordering, buying and selling items on the online platform. This will help curb the use of other apps like the uber to find directions and the location of a particular place. Based on the online research carried out, there were mixed reactions concerning the importance of the WeChat app and the possible improvements that need to be made on it to increase its expansion and popularity. For instance, a client noted that I cannot book an Uber or control my smart TV using the WeChat app (Singh and Sahay, 2012). Four years after its international launch, the global version of WeChat is still only a pale shell compared to what’s available in the Chinese version. This means that much needs to be done in reaching out to the locals in global countries with an aim of making it known and used everywhere by everyone. It needs to have better and updated versions to attain customer satisfaction in the global market. 

However, the market considerations need to be focused on to enhance its success and help the developers enjoy the profits intended. This can be achieved by linking it with some business with a major aim of enhancing its functionality in the global market. It is seen as the domestic app that brings together business partners to enhance business activities through corporation hence promoting a country’s economy. When this is achieved, the transaction costs are likely to lower down hence increasing its popularity. The research conducted claims that the WeChat is more appropriate than any other app In China hence greater focus and attention need to be put in it. In one of the surveys, mixed reactions and responses were presented where clients claimed that; “still, the company has clearly put China first in its WeChat development plans.” This meant that the app has taken roots and sooner or later greater improvements and success will be achieved in China compared to other markets in the world. 

Improved localization needs to be taken as a core step in ensuring efficient use of the WeChat app. After realizing the type of market where the app is founded, the update habits need to be considered too to ensure that the features present are the most recent and in so doing the app can be increased in the geographical areas of use. The strategic locality of the WeChat app means that scheming through the other apps that the entire population uses and making the WeChat an all-app that can accommodate all the other apps preferred by the general population. The production ways and care, therefore, need to be adopted which can help it reach a large population as easy as possible. This will enhance reaching the international standards of production hence expanding the use of the app around the world through the satisfaction of the customer needs (Davison, Ou and Martinsons, 2017). 

The WeChat features can at the same time be improved to attain the international standards of social networking and sharing. For instance, the uses of stickers that are well understood in the world countries form the basis of increasing its expansion around the world. The research findings proved that the WeChat app is greatly admired by many people across the world hence the founder needs to adjust its features and ensure similarities in the different countries.  On an occasion, the respondents gave their reactions claiming that the WeChat stickers can as well be used in other social apps like Twitter or Instagram. “That’s a pretty typical thing an American user might want to do with an image. I can share the picture with other WeChat users, or I can add it to my WeChat favourites, but that’s pretty much it (Harwit, 2017). 

  The sticker packs can be included in the WeChat app to enable users to have an amazing experience during their conversations. Based on the developments being made on the WeChat in China, it is gaining popularity all over compared to that being used in the United States of America. This means that China WeChat is greatly advanced and has many options of being popular. “When I search WeChat for some of the things Americans might like to put into their chats–baseball, American football, Independence Day–I absolutely find nothing. When I search for “Spring Festival” in Chinese, I find multiple sticker packs and dozens of other related stickers. And it’s not just the U.S. that’s getting the short end of the sticker straw (Michael, 2017). 

Through understanding the extent of marketing and trade demands, liberalization can help to achieve the marketing demands hence making the WeChat messaging app can be known by everyone all over the world. This is achieved through the formulation of industrial policies that cross around all the world countries. Its delocalization acts as a form of industrialization that precedes liberalization. To enhance the proper use of the WeChat app, it means full utilization of the technology of innovation available. Based on research done, respondents quoted their concerns relating to how industrialization and liberalization will help the WeChat app to move and be known to other countries of the world. 

However, this is enhanced by the information technology promotion. For instance, statements made claim that China is the most advanced in terms of using the WeChat app compared to other countries including the United States of America. Any infant industries that aim at presenting new designs and services on the WeChat can also be consulted to show how relevant the app can if certain features can be included. In this case, therefore, the local and primary industries will be made use of and in the same way promoting the WeChat app to a larger spectrum of the world’s population.

Based on the results, the theory of Hofstede helps in the analysis of the issues talked about relating to the WeChat and its users. It helps in the general analysis of the WeChat app in relation to its users and the market demands and preferences. This theory gives responses in ways and the reasons for the reduced nationwide knowledge about the WeChat app in relation to other social networking apps like the facebook, twitter, Skype, Instagram and telegram. Through the use of the theory, organizations that focus on inventions say of apps are understood based on the cross-cultural analysis through the use of unprecedented ways (Acar, 2014). The theory, therefore, presents the possible outcomes that can be used by an organization or any individual involved in an invention or development to enhance and increase expansion or popularization of a new idea. The theory basically applies to all social networking platforms and its inventions to enhance expansion either within or without. 

Based on the Hofstede theory, there are six dimensions that relate to culture and reflect on t the official, the formal nature of the WeChat and other social communication networks.  The theory measures how the sharing of media in terms of music, videos and images is achieved through the use of the WeChat as a means of social network communication. It is through the nature of the social networks in terms of the basic information, the type of media shared and the recent updates that the expansion process can be achieved. However, the cultural dimensions and understandings of the perceived states can be scrutinized to examine the different statistics relating to the use of the WeChat with an aim of achieving expansion.  

Based on the theory, it is through a fall and market demands that a certain social app gains momentum and its inventors take action to popularize it. The different cultural practices of any world country determine the use any social networking and communication app preferred by the members of the state. In this case, therefore, how the national culture impacts on any business venture determine its popularity and expansion. To ensure that the WeChat expands to heights needed and hoped for, the national culture should be considered and focused on in terms of what the customers prefer and what they use most (Bijker, Hughes, Pinch and Douglas, 2012). Therefore, to ensure a reasonable expansion of the use of the WeChat, it is evident that there needs to be a clear focus on the type of culture of the people in a particular geographical setting of a state. The WeChat, therefore, can be a widely used app depending on how it can be promoted through the understanding of the different world states. 

The cross-cultural perspectives in any field need to be understood before making any attempts at expanding the WeChat app to global platforms. In understanding culture, it means that the psychological perspectives need also to be put into consideration to enhance a comprehensive understanding of the possible steps to be taken before the expansion process kicks off. Given the different cultural perspectives of different communities in a state, their own preferences need to be considered. However, the cultural perspective should only be looked at based on the major aim of relating it to the social networking apps like the WeChat, Instagram, Face book or Twitter. Based on Hofstede, the cultural perspective of achieving expansion is a dynamic thing and depends on several dimensions. The dimensions ensure that before any expansion of an app is done, there needs to be serious research on the place where the expansion is focused on to ensure that the goals of expansion are achieved without affecting the well being of members in a particular setting (Nan, 2016). 

The popularization and increased use of the WeChat app can be greatly dependent on how the policies in a given country are restricted. When this is done, economic and political development is achieved. In the same way, a room for more electronic inventions is created making it possible for the WeChat app to be shared amongst many people in a particular setup. To ensure that the WeChat can easily be used and accepted by many world individuals, the Chinese government there is need to enhance the global procurement systems by ensuring that the existing social networking apps compete favourably with the newly introduced ones (Riquelme and Rios, 2010). However, the effective enhancement of this can be achieved through the establishment of suitable playing fields in the home markets especially China. There can be globalised divisions on how different performances are achieved on the WeChat apps in comparison to the other social apps like face book, twitter or whatsapp.

 Therefore, new designs, components and manufacturing pieces of equipment need to be chosen from the more improved technologies and incorporated in the use of the WeChat so as to compare performances and enhance its globalization and expansion to meet the world demands of making the world a small village through the use information sharing apps. When critical information is shared among many people within a short time, it means the efficiency of the way of sharing is questionable hence prompting the need to be introduced into the other parts of the world. Therefore, when the new social app is introduced everyone will be eager to use it making it possible for the app to be used widely thus leading to its expansion. 

Before enhancing its expansion, the policies and rules governing the operation of business and communication should be adhered to. This will help create an expanded market hence the customer base enjoying the features contained in the WeChat app. This eventually enhances a continued use of the app with an improved enjoyed attitude of the features it offers thus creating more room for the introduction of more improved features that make more attractive. In so doing, therefore, a wide geographical area is covered thus enhancing its awareness. This makes it possible for many people to admire it and want to use it. When this is done more inventions are done to improve the features used in the WeChat hence attracting more customers (Yeboah and Ewur, 2014). The WeChat features can as well be used in addressing political issues and matters in any country hence a need to spread all over the world countries to enhance easy sharing of information. 

The ideological stands from different states can be shared amongst citizens from the different states. Other features that aim at presenting particular aspects of the world can also be included in the WeChat so as to present the specific emotions and tones to the communicating parties.  They can as well share their own feelings relating to the critical matters of their surrounding environments. In the same way, the WeChat helps in sharing both technological and business or trade ideas that can be transformed into successful business ventures that can help in making profits that are used to improve a country’s economy. It is through the industrial and technological position of China that there has been an extensive improvement and intervention in matters relating to app development especially the social networking apps which aim at capturing a large number of world’s population (Miller, Costa, Haynes, McDonald, Nicolescu, Sinanan and  Wang, 2016). The developments always stand out compared to those in other countries thus presenting high profits for the country’s economy based on the oligopoly and the monopoly positions of such countries on matters relating to app development. 

Based on the expected technological improvement and change, Tencent needs to realize and focus ahead on any prospected technological advancements and the most like areas and countries to experience such improvements. This can be in terms of machines that use the WeChat app like the vehicles. This can, therefore, provide platforms where competition can be organized to determine and compare social apps and their relevance in ensuring their relevance in the prevailing technological era. For instance, the machines to have the WeChat app can be vehicles or even television sets (Baker, 2016). To have a positively impassive expansion, the WeChat app can as well include voice without necessarily using the screen, especially for vehicles on roads during competitions. If the expansion succeeds into the vehicles, it means then that internet settings would be configured in the vehicles making it easy to use the WeChat app during journeys. This, therefore, will enhance the efficiency of communication systems through the use of the different social networking messaging apps.  

Conclusion 

The expansion of the use of WeChat greatly depends on a number of factors starting from the Chinese inventor and developer of the app. The cultural background of the intended area where the launch of the newly developed and introduced app need to be understood in terms of the preferences and tastes of the members found in that geographical setting. It should be clearly realized the intended outcomes of the app to both the users in the native and the new area. The future advancements in technology should also be an area of concern to enhance up to date apps in the social networking industry. The market demands should detect the impact of the app in the communication industry based on messaging technique. For proper goal achievement, comparisons of the initial social networking apps should be made to enhance effectiveness and efficiency of the app in line with the aspired future technological developments. The use of the theory aspect aims at relating and comparing the different social networking apps in relation to the efficiency and effectiveness based on customer tastes and demands, market needs and the future technological advancements.

References

Acar, A. (2014). Culture and social media: An elementary textbook. Cambridge Scholars Publishing.

Baker, D. R. (2016). An intervention to address gender issues in a course on design, engineering, and technology for science educators. In Understanding Girls (pp. 161-196). SensePublishers, Rotterdam.

Bereznoi, A. (2015). Business model innovation in corporate competitive strategy. Problems of economic transition, 57(8), 14-33.

Bijker, W. E., Hughes, T. P., Pinch, T., & Douglas, D. G. (2012). The social construction of technological systems: New directions in the sociology and history of technology. MIT press.

Davison, R. M., Ou, C. X., & Martinsons, M. G. (2017). Interpersonal knowledge exchange in China: The impact of Guanxi and social media. Information & Management.

Harwit, E. (2017). WeChat: social and political development of China’s dominant messaging app. Chinese Journal of Communication, 10(3), 312-327.

Michael, K. (2017). Are You Addicted to Your Smartphone, Social Media, and More?: The New AntiSocial App Could Help. IEEE Consumer Electronics Magazine, 6(4), 116-121.

Riquelme, H. E., & Rios, R. E. (2010). The moderating effect of gender in the adoption of mobile banking. International Journal of bank marketing, 28(5), 328-341.

Singh, H., & Sahay, V. (2012). Determinants of shopping experience: exploring the mall shoppers of national capital region (NCR) of India. International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, 40(3), 235-248.

Ye, Q., & Ma, B. (Eds.). (2017). Internet+ and Electronic Business in China: Innovation and Applications. Emerald Publishing Limited.

Yeboah, J., & Ewur, G. D. (2014). The impact of WhatsApp messenger usage on students performance in Tertiary Institutions in Ghana. Journal of Education and practice, 5(6), 157-164.

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