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Nature Conservancy partners with WeChat to support global community building

The Nature Conservancy has teamed up with WeChat to make it easy for eco-minded consumers to get involved in conservation efforts and stay up-to-date on the nonprofit's work.

From March 1 through June 30, WeChat will donate $5 to The Nature Conservancy for every new user who downloads the app and follows the organization?s official account, for up to $1 million in support. The hope is that by partnering with WeChat, the Nature Conservancy can inspire a broader group of consumers around the world who want to learn more about how they can get involved and also connect with others with similar interests.

?The Nature Conservancy is excited by the possibilities of where mobile and nature intersect,? said Amy Ganderson, director of digital marketing at The Nature Conservancy, Arlington, VA.

?WeChat provides users the opportunity to interact with their environment in ways never thought possible just a few years ago,? she said. ?The Nature Conservancy's and WeChat partnership is about heightening our community's experience with their surroundings through the WeChat app with engaging photos, updates on environmental news, green jobs & local information on how you can get involved.

?We're thinking mobile-first for this effort. All of our ideas, content and promotions are centered around a mobile experience.?

Benefitting nature
Smartphone users can support the Nature Conservancy and learn more about nature photography by downloading the WeChat app and adding ?Nature_org? as a contact to follow the official account. This can be accomplished by tapping ?Contacts? in the menu bar, tapping ?Add? and typing ?Nature_org? in the search field.

The Nature Conservancy?s WeChat account will be a new destination where users can learn more about the organization?s work to benefit nature and people, find ways to get involved and access daily nature photographs and a host of other fun surprises.

The funds from the WeChat partnership will be used to further the Nature Conservancy?s work on projects such as helping sea turtles make a comeback around the world and saving the Yunnan golden monkey found in the remote forests of southwestern China.

Mobile social strategies
WeChat is a mobile social messaging app with more than 100 million registered users that was developed by Tencent in China. It provides users with a variety of messaging-related services such as text messaging, photo/video sharing, location sharing, shared streaming content feeds and photo filters.

Several brands have already partnered with WeChat as a way to build a presence with Chinese consumers.

For example, last fall London department store Harrods launched a WeChat social media account that conveys its latest content and special offers as a way to increase its exposure in China (see story).

For The Nature Conservancy, the WeChat partnership will help the nonprofit get its causes in front of new consumers and support its fundraising efforts.

?We're looking to raise $1 million dollars to help projects such as helping sea turtles around the world ?from California to the Coral Triangle ? make a comeback and saving the mysterious Yunnan golden monkey found in the remote forests of southwestern China,? said Ms. Ganderson.

?From March 1 through June 30, 2014, WeChat USA will donate $5 to The Nature Conservancy for every new user who downloads WeChat and adds the Conservancy's account as a contact,? she said.

Final Take
Chantal Tode is associate editor on Mobile Marketer, New York