This is the second of a series of "WeChat Made Easy" posts on what businesses can do by combining the power of Salesforce and WeChat using Charket.

Charket is a native Salesforce app that integrates WeChat into Salesforce. Install Charket app on AppExchange.

"Wechatize" (noun, wechatization) is a new word I coined. It means making things usable or suitable for the WeChat platform. In the previous post, I introduced how to run WeChat marketing campaigns from within Salesforce. Sales leads and contacts generated through WeChat campaigns are already linked with WeChat users. This means it’s possible to reach out to them by sending them WeChat messages from within Salesforce; however, for leads and contacts that were generated through other marketing channels or entered manually, the WeChat connections do not exist. This post introduces two ways to wechatize existing leads and contacts.

Wechatize Leads and Contacts through a Shared QR Code

This is the approach that most businesses are using today and is suitable for companies having a large amount of leads and contacts. A Charket user generates one QR code from a WeChat business account or use the default one of the account. This QR code, along with other marketing information, is then distributed through existing marketing channels, such as Email, social networks, billboards, etc. When a WeChat user scans this QR code, the user is asked to enter certain identification information, such as account number or email address, which will be used to locate an existing lead or contact.

Wechatize Existing Leads and Contacts

If there is a match, a WeChat follower is created in Salesforce and linked to the lead or contact; otherwise, both a WeChat follower and a lead or contact get created in Salesforce and linked together.

Here is a good example of this scenario. Today, most banks in China include a QR code in their monthly credit card statements or the daily transaction summary. The QR code for each bank is the same for all its customers. After a bank customer scans the QR code with his/her WeChat app, he/she is asked to enter his/her national ID number, credit card number, sometimes an SMS verification code, to connect his/her WeChat account with his/her credit card account. Once such WeChat connection is created, the bank can use it to send credit card transaction notifications and other credit card related messages to the customer; the customer can use it to check transaction history and perform other activities like those available from the online banking or the mobile banking app.

Wechatize Leads and Contacts through Unique QR Codes

This option provides a better user experience but it’s more difficult to do and has limitations. A Charket user can manually generate a unique QR code for each lead or contact and send the QR code through Email. However, this can be a labor-intensive, and mentally boring, task if many leads and/or contacts are involved. The solution is to develop a Visualforce Email template which calls Charket APIs to dynamically generate a unique QR code for each lead or contact whenever this Visualforce Email template is called. When using such Email template with Salesforce Mass Email, a Salesforce user can easily send out a lot of unique QR codes to leads or contacts. Since each QR code already has the lead or contact information in it, when the QR code is scanned by a WeChat user, a WeChat connection is created immediately without having the WeChat user enter anything. Sometimes, an Email/SMS verification code is still necessary to make sure each QR code is scanned by the expected WeChat user.

Before implementing this approach, businesses should be aware of the following limits.

1. The WeChat subscription account does not support generating unique QR codes, only the WeChat service account does.

2. One WeChat service account can keep up to 500K active QR codes, so it’s highly recommended to generate temporary QR codes with an expiration date for each one, instead of generating permanent QR codes.

3. Salesforce imposes the limit of 1,000 Emails each user can send everyday.