Dell’s Sina Microblog Presence in China

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Note from Lionel: Below is a post from Jacqui Zhou who ran our Direct2Dell Chinese blog in the past and is responsible for much of Dell's globalization strategy in social media. Since I thought this topic might be of interest to some of our Direct2Dell readers, I asked her to share some perspective here. If you will be attending SXSW Interactive and are interested in a broader look at social media in China, you might want to check out Social Media and China: Different Than You Think. Jacqui will moderate the panel discussion that features Benjamin Joffe and Sam Flemming.

Here's Jacqui's post:

Three years ago, Dell launched its Chinese corporate blog. This
week marks another big step in Dell's social media engagement in China – earlier this week we launched Dell's official microblog in
China
. Why take this next step
through microblogging? Well, microblogs have become an important channel for us
to increase direct communications with customers in China.

According to CNNIC, by the end of 2009, the number of Internet users in China
has reached 384 million, larger than the entire population of the United
States. Watching video online, uploading photos, going to Kaixin or Renren
(Facebook's equivalents in China), writing blogs and micro-blogs have become a
major part of online activities. At the same time, with the emergence of online
transaction applications, online purchase is rapidly growing in China.  We will follow our customers wherever they, in
the language they prefer and on the platforms of their choice.

Dell's official microblog
in China
will
serve as an additional connection point for our customers. The microblog will
serve as a channel for corporate news, technology discussions and even coupon
and deal information. Instead of duplicating what we have in the US, we localize
the content and platform to appeal to interests in China and go where our
customers in China are.  As you might have noticed, we partner with Sina
Microblog
, the most
successful and widely used microblogging platform in China. Behind Dell's China
account is a cross-functional local team of engineers, customer care, marketing
personnel and sales representatives. We will heavily rely on our employees.
Conversations with customers should not be not limited to one or several teams'
job. It can be most useful and beneficial when it is really part of anyone's
job, better connecting and being in touch with the day to day customer
connections.

China is a
diverse country with its unique culture and people. We are here to learn. That
said, the motivations of customers have to get online and connect with
companies are fundamentally same.  They want great products, great
services and they want companies to listen. Listening and engaging in honest
and two way conversations have helped us succeed in the US. We will carry on
this heritage in any part of the world, including China.

Three
years ago, we started Direct2Dell Chinese, the first corporate blog in Chinese
in the computer industry. It has become an invaluable tool for Dell to listen,
engage and converse with local customers. Our Dell tech
support forum

has accumulated a big user base where customers assist each other in technology
needs.  We have started listening and outreaching program in China where
our customer care and tech support agents tune into online conversations
proactively and help address customers technology needs. We have implemented
ratings and reviews program on dell.com, where Chinese customers can share
their feedback of products and help each other make more informed purchase
decision. Very soon, we will have our community presence on key local social
networking sites like Renren. China is another frontier for Dell
to engage with customers in social media. We will keep exploring new areas as
we see new trends from our customer. More to come.

Within
days of launch, the number of fans has over 6,000 followers. We look forward to more conversations there.

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