Benjamin Li
Nov 13, 2013

Dutch Consulate in Shanghai uses Weibo to help nationals link up with local Chinese

SHANGHAI - The Netherlands Consulate General in Shanghai has teamed up with creative agency Energize to help the 4000 plus Dutch people in the city to engage with their fellow work mates and Chinese friends through WeChat and Weibo.

Dutch Consulate in Shanghai uses Weibo to help nationals link up with local Chinese

Creative agency Energize has worked with the Netherlands Consulate General in Shanghai for two years on a project basis. The latest digital campaign, titled “In touch with the Dutch”, is an innovative campaign for the Dutch Consulate to bring Chinese and Dutch people in Shanghai closer together using Weibo and WeChat. 

Dutch national Rogier Bikker, strategy partner of the agency, told Campaign Asia-Pacific that “there are currently 4000 plus Dutch people living in Shanghai, and a lot of them are in the creative industry like architecture, urban planning, marketing and art.”

“Our insight is that lots of foreigners who are living in Shanghai may have Chinese colleagues at work, but they don’t actually have many local Chinese friends on a personal level,” he pointed out.

Bikker added that this campaign aims to stimulate more conversation and communication and be a bridge between the Dutch and local Chinese and for them to share common ground between the two cultures.

Energize is responsible for the strategy and creative concept, production of the videos, and the execution of the Weibo postings.

The campaign began last week and will last for a month, with one of four videos appearing each week. Subjects include a film director, an architect, a kindergarten owner and a university professor who has an electric racing car team that will be taking part in the World Electric car racing competition in Germany next year.

“The conversation is unscripted and we want to attract local Chinese who are in similar professions and have similar interests to connect with their Dutch counterparts. We also like to have Dutch residents contacting local people who have a good knowledge, for example, about travelling around the countryside in China,” Bikker said.

The campaign has also gained the support of Dutch brands like Philips, C&A, G-Star, NESO (a Study in Holland organisation) as well as some key opinion leaders in China, who are also sharing the campaign updates on their own company’s Weibo pages.

Bikker added that lots of government organisations in China use Weibo, but very few post unique and creative social campaigns, “they often just post what the Government is doing in conferences and meetings.”

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