Do you know how to know how to reach Chinese students online? That doesn’t sound too complicated. After all, at Envisage International, we reach four million international students from 170+ countries across the globe every year through our network of websites, newsletters, blogs, iPhone apps and social media. Here is the complicated part. Facebook is banned, Twitter is nonexistent and Google is irrelevant and there are significant language barriers.
So what do you do? You have to play on their playground with their rules and in their language. Here are some of the things that we have done to reach Chinese international students.
- Translation – While many Chinese students can speak and read English, we have found they simply won’t. They prefer to read in their native language. Translations are key to reaching them. We have done this with some of our insurance blogs, getting content out in their language. You can see an example here.
- Social Media – As mentioned earlier, Facebook is banned in China. As opposed to Facebook, they use renren.com and instead of twitter, they use weibo.com. We want to reach them where they are socializing on the Internet. Click on the links to visit our renren and weibo pages.
- Mobile – As mentioned in an earlier blog posting, we developed an International Student iPhone app. It allows students to search for schools in the US as well as many other useful features. This app has proved to be extremely popular and China is the country with the second most downloads of our app!
We began our efforts to reach Chinese students over the summer. If we look at what countries our traffic comes from on our flagship site, InternationalStudent.com, China typically has ranked 10th. Over the summer months, their average rank was 7th. This clearly shows an increased amount of traffic from our efforts.
What are you doing to reach Chinese students online? What seems to be working?