With a quarter of the world’s population living in China, it is difficult for any Western social media platform to compete. Having a Chinese Government embargo makes the stakes even higher. With the WeChat platform breasting 549 million monthly active users and chasing Facebook’s 600 around the world, it is time to consider which one is better in terms of service delivered, and which one will finally come out on top.
Is Facebook Dated Compared to the WeChat Platform?
Facebook still largely follows the original Mark Zuckerberg model, although the American social page did introduce a few tweaks in March. These include being able to make free phone calls and send friends money on their birthdays. What makes Facebook sticky is more likely to be inertia, in the sense of the sheer effort required to close friends down, and reconnect with them on another platform.
Is the WeChat Platform Simply Better?
WeChat is not a social messaging service with a few apps added to keep it looking cute. It hosts nearly 10 million third-party apps (banks, brands, celebrities, media companies, start-ups etc.) and these offer signed-up members access to personalised features.
Depending on the application, they may be able to access direct messaging, voice, location and payments. Hence, the WeChat platform is a portfolio offering, unlike Facebook that does one thing only, albeit remarkably well.
The Decider is in the Scope for Growth
Social media pages make money from advertising because they are generally free to use. Advertisers chase new markets where there is growth. According to TechnAsia, most of WeChat’s users are on the China mainland where mobile is still rolling out unlike in the West. Although the current monthly active user stakes are almost on par, the WeChat platform is likely surge ahead if not for excellence, then at least for market size,