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Best Practices to Leverage Renren for Consumer Activation

Check out my new slide deck outlining five best practices for brands to leverage China’s most popular social networking platform Renren for consumer activation.

Renren is perhaps the most popular social networking platform amongst Chinese college students. It is most popular in tier 1 and tier 2 cities, but gaining popularity in tier 3 cities. Renren’s design is strongly inspired by Facebook and the most popular content on Renren is personal status updates and photos. Renren has more than 100 million active users and continues to grow.

Like Facebook, Renren offer many solutions for brands, like a public page, pre-built applications, custom-built mini sites and social ads. Unlike Facebook, setting up a public page on Renren requires buying a full package from Renren, including social ads. While many brands are creating public pages on Renren, brands should leverage the full functionality of Renren and integrate it with other platforms like micro-blogging platform Sina Weibo and online video sites Youku and Tudou to effectively activate consumers.

In this slide deck, I use Dell’s Renren case study to showcase five best practices for brands to leverage Renren for consumer activation. Disclosure: Dell is a MSLGROUP client in India, but not China.

Dell has one of the most popular brand public pages on Renren with more than 730,000 fans. Dell has also leveraged the full range of Renrenʼs public page features. The Dell Campus mini site on Renren is a long-term initiative to recruit and leverage campus ambassadors and Dell has about 150 campus ambassadors as of now. Dell has also created a dedicated contest mini site on Renren to run a series of contests. Fans get points for participating in contests and performing missions, which they can redeem against Dell vouchers. The Dell contest mini site has more than 230,000 members.

Based on case studies like Dell and MSLGROUP’s own experience in managing SNS pages for brands like Alpenliebe (on Renren), Watsons (on Renren), E&Y (on Renren), Singapore Tourism (on Kaixin001 and Douban) and Ikea (on Kaixin001 and Douban), MSLGROUP has identified five best practices for leveraging Renren for consumer activation:

Best Practices to Leverage Renren for Consumer Activation

1. Integrate mini site, public page and ad package

Use the ad package to drive Renren members to the mini site, then convert them into public page fans to engage with them repeatedly over time.

2. Define ladder of engagement & call to action

Define the actions you want Renren members to engage in a ladder of engagement from the simplest to the most complex actions.

3. Communicate the call to action repeatedly

Clearly communicate the call to action in a step 1-2-3 manner, sometimes repeatedly in multiple locations, to reinforce the message.

4. Leverage viral social graph features

Fully leverage Renren’s viral features like checking in, updating status message, inviting friends to support entries and sharing entries with friends.

5. Feature community member profiles

Show featured community member profiles in multiple locations, linking back to their Renren profiles, to increase the sense of active participation.

As you can see, many of these best practices are also applicable for integrating campaign microsites and Facebook brand pages via the Facebook Open Graph API.

If you have experience in leveraging Renren mini sites for consumer activation, do share your own best practices in the comments below.

If you liked this post, consider inviting me to speak at a conference or workshop, or asking MSLGROUP to create a social media strategy for your brand. Please e-mail me at [email protected], call me at +91-9999856940, or connect with me on Twitter.

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