Starbucks China launches gifting feature on Weixin

Starbucks China has launched a new social gifting feature on Weixin “用星说” (Say it with Starbucks).

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Co-created by Starbucks and Tencent’s Weixin, China’s leading mobile social communications service, the online-to-offline social gifting innovation encourages everyday acts of kindness and appreciation among family and friends by enabling users to instantly and easily gift a Starbucks beverage or digital gift card. Starbucks is the first retail brand to bring to life a locally relevant social gifting experience in China.

“Our new social gifting feature aims to deepen the shared moments of connection by allowing our customers to express their love, concern and gratitude, with the gift of Starbucks, to the people most important to them,” said Belinda Wong, CEO of Starbucks China. ”By leveraging the power and reach of Weixin, we want to encourage everyday simple acts of kindness to put a smile on someone’s face at any time or place, while elevating the unique Starbucks Experience beyond our retail stores in China.”

During the initial launch period, Weixin has opened a convenient access for ‘Say it with Starbucks’ users in its Weixin Wallet function, demonstrating the significance of the strategic partnership to both companies.

Users will be able to select from a selection of Starbucks-branded gifts and add a personalised message in the form of text, image or video to uplift the day of a loved one. Once a gift is received, it will be saved in the recipient’s Weixin app and can be redeemed at any Starbucks store in Mainland China.

“This is the beginning of an exciting social gifting journey for Starbucks. During the trial phase two weeks ago, our partners (employees) and many Starbucks customers became the first in China to experience this innovation and have conveyed tens of thousands of gestures of love, gratitude and care to their friends and loved ones,” said Molly Liu, VP of China Digital Ventures.

A sister product of WeChat, Weixin targets Chinese domestic users, and has 846 million global monthly active users (as of the third quarter of 2016).

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