British Airways takes off in WeChat with Chinese New Year promotion

BABritish Airways has made its first foray on to Chinese social network phenomenon WeChat with a campaign to celebrate Chinese New Year.

In a campaign inspired by the Charlie and the Chocolate Factory move, BA delivered custom-made red envelopes to the first 2014 followers of its official WeChat account.

Inside each red envelope was a new year greeting from BA regional CEO Tracy Dedman and a coupon worth 300 RMB (US$50). Three winners won roundtrip BA tickets for travel between China and London in their gold-colored red envelopes.

“We knew there would be a whole bunch of HONGBAO (red envelope) campaigns this year, so we needed something that would stand out,” said Jeremy Webb, national director of Social@Ogilvy, China, the agency behind the campaign.

“Our offline to online approach was all about creating a shared experience that would create suspense across the community — think “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,” but in China… and with golden air tickets.”

Viktoria Williams, marketing lead, British Airways, Asia Pacific, added: “Today travelers in China are learning more about us through social media than traditional media. For BA it is vital that we develop our mobile business in the China market where most consumers have gone straight to using social media and e-commerce on their phones instead of computers.”


  • Project title: British Airways Chinese New Year “Gold” Red Envelope Social Campaign
  • Client: British Airways
  • Brief: A creative, engaging social campaign that rides on Chinese New Year buzz, driving awareness of the
  • BA brand, as well as promoting the newly launched BA WeChat account
  • Creative agency: Social@Ogilvy, China
  • Client Director: Jeremy Webb
  • Client and Strategy Lead: Ayur Wu
  • Social Media Community Management: Bowen Hu
  • Creative & Art: Dora Yin
  • Copywriter: Ben Xu
  • Producing and Delivery Support: Dwyane Chen
  • Exposure: BA official website, Online travel, vertical media, RTB media exposure

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