China, like the majority of nations, has enacted laws governing advertisements to safeguard the health and safety of consumers. The Republic of China’s Advertisement Law stipulates general rules that all advertisers must abide by.
There are also more stringent regulations for certain sectors, such as the tobacco, alcohol, and healthcare industries. However, as non-traditional media platforms like WeChat have grown in popularity, the nation has tightened its regulations on advertising.
Get started with WeChat advertising
WeChat is one of the most used social media platforms in China. That’s why is very attractive to brands looking to market their products in China. Marketing using WeChat can reach a huge number of target audiences.
And here comes the WeChat advertising. WeChat advertising enables companies to display promotional messages through:
- WeChat Moments
- Official Account articles
Additionally, WeChat advertising is a great tool for brands to enhance and maximize the number of WeChat Official Account followers, it helps companies to drive their traffic and generate conversions into sales.
Industries banned or restricted in WeChat
The Chinese government in general has many laws and bans that overlook advertisements, including ads on social media platforms like WeChat. Here are some of the industries banned by the Chinese government for advertising.
In addition, regulated industries for advertisements in China are:
- Health and Medical
- Real estate
- Legal Services
- Financial Services
However the list is very dynamic, and WeChat always has the final say on whether your company is eligible or not to run ads on the platform.
On the other hand, note that for overseas entities WeChat requires a separate application for a WeChat advertising account and the scope of ads is strictly related to your company’s registered business. It can get quite tricky, right?
However, if your company falls within any of the above categories not all is lost. You still have plenty of indirect and legal solutions to promote your content on WeChat. For instance, you can focus on WeChat SEO and optimizing your keywords to whitelisting. Subscribe to our newsletter for more news on this topic.
Advertising regulations on WeChat
The key elements of the advertising law as they apply to WeChat are outlined below. Firstly, qhen attempting to create effective advertisements, WeChat also has its own terms that are frequently updated:
- Avoid superlative adjectives like best, highest, greatest, etc when talking about any product or service
- Do not place a brand, product, or service on a scale like 5-star rating or international/national ratings
- Kindly avoid using words such as top quality, excellent, cutting edge, or premium when advertising a product/service in WeChat
- Do not use words with “one” like “one of the top”, “one of the best” or “one of a kind” etc to describe anything in WeChat advertisements
- Please avoid any mentions of scarcity in an ad like very rare, unique, one few left, etc.
- Do not mention anything claiming to be “national leader” or of “international quality” or words similar to this
- Do not use any national flag, emblem, or anthem of any country in WeChat ads
- You can only use RMB for settlements and foreign currencies are not allowed
- The content of the advertisements must be practical and should not be exaggerated
- Should not talk about transportation, educational, commercial, or cultural facilities under planning or under construction
- All the images used in the advertisement should be realistic
- For the ads related to bank loans and other bank services, complete details of the bank must be provided
- WeChat ads should not have language that sounds discriminatory
Secondly, there are more requirements for advertising:
- When publishing ads about limited sales, the exact dates and duration must be provided in the advertisement
- Do not provide statistical information in WeChat ads until a proper evidence source link is given
- Avoid ads with unlicensed tie-ups with major events happening in the country like Winter Olympics, Olympic Games, etc.
- Should not use language that can possibly manipulate the consumers
- Do not use Click-for-gift tactics in WeChat ads. Any gifts offered must include all the details like name, value, quantity, and any timeline for the event
- Never use words referring to a special title like superstar, leader, or synonyms
In addition, WeChat accounts registered with overseas business licenses must apply separately for WeChat advertising accounts.
In conclusion, advertisement regulations are a great way to protect consumers. Similarly, China, like any other country, wants to protect consumer safety and health. But the restrictions are stricter than in most countries, and it’s common for all social media platforms, including WeChat.
On the other hand, WeChat has its own restrictions too, which makes it even harder to advertise using WeChat ads. In addition, specific wording requirements might make your ad not pass the verification by Tencent.
If you are a business that’s looking to advertise on WeChat, it is very important to understand the rules and regulations on the government and platform levels and above all abide to the requirements to not have your WeChat official account suspended or deleted.
At The WeChat Agency, we use our knowledge and expertise to help businesses build content in accordance with the advertising regulations in China and WeChat. We help create meaningful partnerships and networks among Chinese customers. For additional information, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Feel free to subscribe to our monthly newsletter too.