WeChat is not just an app, but a “super-app” composed of smaller integrated apps, which means there are a lot of different places within WeChat that you can advertise. This page will help explain the various WeChat advertising formats available. We’ll try to make it simple, even for people that haven’t used WeChat before.

Here are some key tips up-front:

  • Ads can be targeted to audiences based on region, gender, age, device type, educational level, interest/behavior, and retargeting.
  • The advertising estimate models used for many ad types feel like Facebook’s ad system.
  • WeChat is very competitive and ads do not show up for users nearly as much as Facebook’s do.
  • To get good results, your offer will need to be interesting to users.

WeChat Moments Ads

WeChat Moments Ads are native advertisements that are displayed in a user’s Moments feed.

This is the feed users scroll through to see content posted by their WeChat “friends”.

The ads themselves look a lot like regular content posted in the feed, which helps make sure more people actually look at them.

Promotion Goals for Moments Ads

The ads in WeChat Moments can be used for a variety of reasons, including brand promotion, collecting sales leads, promoting products (e-commerce), driving app downloads, as well as sending users to your WeChat Official Account, mini-program or Video Account.

For many advertisers, the entire user journey – from ad to content to payment – is all within WeChat. Other advertisers choose to send users off of WeChat to other websites/apps.

WeChat Moments Advertising Formats

You can add text, video, a single image or multiple images to your ads. Your goal should be to create an ad that is both engaging and fits in with the style of the Moments feed.

Users can also comment on and “like” ads. Plus, they can see comments from their friends as well (although they don’t see comments from people that aren’t their friends).

Click on the images to see several samples of the WeChat advertising formats available to anybody advertising on Moments. These ad types are called:

  • Regular ads
  • Showcase ads
  • Combination card ads

There are also other formats available, which include interactive elements that change as users swipe or long-press the ad or shake their phone.

WeChat Moment Ad Purchase Models

In short, WeChat Moments use a cost-per-thousand-impressions (CPM) model, but it comes in a few different styles suitable for different businesses.

  1. Imagine you are a large consumer brand that wants to spend 10 million Chinese Yuan/month to reach very many people. You may choose to go with the “Exposure Scheduling” model. With this model, you would make a large purchase of ad credit up front, with the cost-per-thousand-impressions (CPM) and time period fixed.
  2. Imagine you are an SME that wants to first spend 10 thousand Chinese Yuan/month. You would use the “Exposure Competition” model. It’s also based on cost per thousand impressions (CPM), and you will be competing with other advertisers for other advertising spots.
    In this model, it is also possible for WeChat’s system to take into account conversions, such as cost per lead and automatically adjust the bidding. This is called OCPM, or Optimized Cost Per Impression. This is an option we do not usually use, because it does not perform better than we achieve with our advertising experts, analysts and tools.

WeChat Official Account Ads

WeChat Official Accounts are the accounts run by businesses, organizations and brands. The content they post shows up first in the messages area of WeChat. Then it can also be shared by users privately or to Moments.

Ads on Official Accounts are displayed at the footer or middle of the article, and may be in an image or video format.

Promotion Goals for Official Account Ads

Similar to WeChat Moments Ads, the ads in WeChat Official Accounts can be used for a variety of reasons, including brand promotion, collecting sales leads, promoting products (e-commerce), driving app downloads, as well as sending users to your WeChat Official Account, mini-program or Video Account.

WeChat Advertising Formats for Official Accounts

Official Account ads show up in two places:

  • Article footer
  • Middle-of-article

For each spot, they can be in one of two formats:

  • Image
  • Video

Unlike Moments ads, users cannot “like” or comment on these ads.

Ads in this format, tend not to blend in with the surrounding content.

WeChat Official Account Ad Purchase Models

WeChat Official Account ads can be purchased based on exposure scheduling and exposure competition (both CPM types), as well as pay-per-click (CPC).

They can also both be optimized using WeChat’s system (called OCPM and OCPC, with “O” for “optimized”). However, it does not work well on its own compared to a professionally-managed account.

WeChat Video Account Ads (Channels Ads)

WeChat Video Accounts are a lot like Tik Tok accounts. Users can post short videos, which are then viewed by both strangers and WeChat friends. Popular videos can achieve massive viral exposure.

WeChat’s video area also goes by the name of “Channels”.

Promotion Goals for Video Account Ads

Video Account ads are useful for promoting your Video Account or building your brand.

WeChat Advertising Formats for Video Accounts

Ads can be shown on videos in two places:

  • As an overlay on the bottom of the video.
  • In the video comments area.

Note that the videos themselves can be where you send traffic to, meaning you could place an ad in Moments or elsewhere that sends users to see your video.

WeChat Video Account Ad Buying Models

Ads can be tailored to get a high-level of exposure to quickly enhance the popularity of the Video Account (CPM), or performance-oriented advertisers can use the bidding placement mode to efficiently acquire more targeted traffic (CPC).

There’s also a third option which is more like influencer marketing. WeChat runs an advertiser/creator matchmaker system which allows advertisers to pay creators to make videos for them.

WeChat Mini-program Ads

Mini-programs are lightweight apps within WeChat. They’re used to make games, create loyalty programs for restaurants, run e-commerce stores and many other things.

Promotion Goals for Mini-program Ads

Mini-program ads are useful for anything that Moments ads and Official Account ads are useful for. They are also particularly useful for promoting other mini-programs, including games.

WeChat Advertising Formats for Mini-programs

WeChat Mini-program Ad Buying Models

  1. Mini-program banner ads can be purchased via pay per click (CPC) and exposure scheduling models (CPM).
  2. Launch and interstitial ads can be purchased via competitive cost per view (CPM) or exposure scheduling models (also CPM).

What About WeChat Search Ads?

WeChat has a search feature built in, and it can be a major source of organic traffic for some WeChat accounts.

However, it currently isn’t easy for non-Chinese companies to get started with WeChat Search Ads if they don’t have a Chinese business entity.

What Format of WeChat Ads Should You Use?

If you want to advertise in a way that brings you the highest ROI possible, you should get the help of a professional team.

We’ve helped hundreds of businesses with their marketing on WeChat and other Chinese platforms.

Feel free to contact us with your questions.