Although you won't see many Chinese golfers at the Masters this week, there is one and he's near the lead. In fact, the sport of golf is growing in China and it's only a matter of time before there are more men and women making waves in professional golf.
WeChat has announced it has forged partnerships with three of China's top international golfers, Li Haotong, Dou Zecheng and Lin Xiyu, to become their sponsors starting this month, part of a drive to introduce its brand values to overseas consumers through the popular sport.
A major sports sponsor and now the sponsor of professional golfers for the first time, WeChat is not only supporting the golfers, but also strengthening awareness of the brand among overseas consumers and expanding WeChat's social network from online to offline as golf, one of the most popular sports in the world, is also a social sport.
Li Haotong, Dou Zecheng and Lin Xiyu, are making a splash on the golf circuit with their youthfulness, energy and positive attitudes, characteristics they share with WeChat's brand.
The partnerships will first see Li Haotong competing at the 2018 Masters Tournament in Augusta, Georgia, which is the first of golf's four major championships. In the future, WeChat will support Li Haotong at various major golf events including the PGA Tour and the European Tour.
"With the sponsorships, we hope to support Chinese professional golfers at international events and help promote the sport in China", said Juliet Zhu, Head of WeChat Marketing. "Embracing openness and striving for excellence, an ethos it shares with the golfers, WeChat is committed to developing a global app of the highest quality that facilitates connections, communication and the exchange of information."
Through the golf sponsorships, WeChat will also develop a better understanding of international sports and culture, helping to make the development of the WeChat ecosystem more diverse.
As the most popular social communication platform in China, WeChat is expanding its partnerships across various fields and industries, leveraging its innovative and open approach. In February this year, the combined number of monthly active users of Weixin and WeChat exceeded one billion.
WeChat envisions and innovates new ways for people to connect, communicate and share. WeChat is a mobile social communication app designed for smart phone users. WeChat empowers users in fun and dynamic ways, by bringing together messaging, social communication and games in one seamless, interactive experience, with comprehensive privacy and security settings that can be tailored as needed. WeChat provides a central point of control for users to share voice, photos, videos, and text messages across their entire social ecosystem. Through Official Accounts, WeChat allows brands to deliver rich and high-touch appealing content experiences to engage with and grow their communities. WeChat is available free to download on Android, iOS, Windows operating system, web version and Mac for desktop version.