Mobile compatibility is key. China has a uniquely active mobile community. Investors are mostly finding and accessing financial information via their mobile devices. Mobile platforms have been innovative in their use of QR codes, banking capabilities, social integration, and are consequently a major access point to investors. Companies should aim to gain exposure on investment-focused channels like Xueqiu, Hexun, iFeng, Eastmoney, or Gelonghui. Exposure in these channels will ensure your company builds relationships with major investment advisers in the market.
Another very successful mobile application, used by both retail and institutional investors, is WeChat. With close to one billion active monthly users, creating content that can be viewed on WeChat can increase brand recognition and engagement. Companies may consider creating H5 Reports, which are ideally compatible with the WeChat platform. Here, companies can create engaging, visual content with relevant financial information catered to Chinese retail investors; this also allows for easy link sharing to a wider audience.
Their IR team highlighted the value of patience, commitment, and face-to-face engagement in China, as well as Asia in general. When scheduling road shows, seeking local guidance and actively communicating with the sell-side was invaluable for setting up meetings. Many first meetings were often a “pleasant audience” to get to know the IRO. To gain traction in China, returning multiple times and fostering relationships were key to eventually “sealing the deal”.
A significant amount of financial content found online in China is written by “financial experts”, who may carry substantial authority among investment communities. Retail investors are a dominant group in China and often defer to suggested investment ideas flagged by the expert community. By making your content more accessible on regional social media platforms and portals, you may find it easier to build relationships with this important group.