The Wechat Ecosystem - Growth, Ads & Payments with Matthew Brennan

The Wechat Ecosystem - Growth, Ads & Payments with Matthew Brennan
In the first of a two part conversation, Matthew Brennan discussed the evolution of the Wechat ecosystem focus on their user growth, advertising & payments

Matthew Brennan from China Channel joined us in a two part conversation on the evolution of the Wechat ecosystem. In the first part of our conversation, we discussed the potential slowdown of Wechat users growth, their main revenue drivers, advertising and payment products with advertising and payments with a huge growth in their market share against their other competitors such as Alipay in China.

Here are the interesting show notes and links to the discussion (with time-stamps included):

  • Matthew Brennan, Co-founder of China Channel dot co (, @MattyBGooner , Linkedin, Wechat:Yowdy-CQ)
    • Re-introduction [0:37]
    • Since our last conversation, what have you been up to?
  • Wechat Ecosystem Part 1
    • Growth & User Numbers [1:27]
      • There is a narrative in China about Wechat similar in the US where tech pundits declared “Apple is doomed”. We hear news on whether Wechat is still cool or sluggish growth, and the end of Wechat marketing. So what is really going on within the Wechat ecosystem?  [1:31]
      • What are the current user numbers and engagement within Wechat? [3:30]
      • What are the number of wechat users outside China who are using Wechat to communicate with people in China? [6:07]
      • What is the typical daily schedule for an engaged Wechat user? [9:20]
      • What are the key things to watch out for Wechat with regards to user numbers and growth? [11:39]
    • Wechat Advertising [12:35]
      • What is the current state of Wechat advertising in China? [12:47]
      • Is Wechat going for a niche high end targeted advertising instead of what Facebook is doing for small and medium businesses in Wechat Moments? [15:36]
      • Do you see new advertising products within Wechat, for example, moment ads going full-screen, coupons and virtual gifting? [16:38]
    • Wechat Pay (or TenPay) [18:51]
      • How is Wechat pay growing? What the key drivers for their payments, for example, ecommerce? [18:51]
      • Can you provide some perspectives to how Wechat pay has gained market share from 10% to 38.1% from 2014 to 2016? How is this affecting Alipay? [21:09]
      • Is Tencent trying not to focus on advertising revenue because of the success of Wechat pay? [22:28]

Podcast Information:

The show is hosted by Bernard Leong (@bleongcw) and are sponsored by Ideal Workspace (Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn) with their new Altizen Desk on Indiegogo (Twitter, Facebook, Medium). Also check out Ideal Workspace’s new standing desk, Altizen and sign up for their mailing list. Sound credits for the intro music: Taro Iwashiro, “The Beginning” from Red Cliff Soundtrack.