Cyrus Janssen is one of North America’s leading experts on China and Chinese marketing
China has been a mystery to the outside world ever since it built that wall, and to this day it gets plenty of bad press. Cyrus Janssen wants to change that. He’s an international business consultant, entrepreneur, and speaker whose been living abroad since 2007 in Shanghai, Hong Kong, and now Richmond BC.
Janssen was born and raised in Orlando, Florida. An interest in international travel and foreign languages was sparked by a German-born mother who took the young man on several trips to her homeland. After graduating from Florida State University in December 2006, Janssen moved to Shanghai to pursue a career as a golf professional. Two years later, he was given the opportunity to serve as the Head Golf Professional for Sheshan International Golf Club, China’s first premier private club.
As an American expat, Cyrus Janssen is working hard to work around the sabre rattling that seems to be growing louder between the U.S. and China. He’s pivoted from the fairway to work as a business consultant and marketing executive who believes that building bridges between countries is the only way forward.
“My wife is Chinese-Canadian, my three children are mixed race, and I feel that I stand in the middle where I have both perspectives and can facilitate better relationships,” Janssen says. “We’re never going to change each other, but we can work to understand each other.”
Janssen has drawn upon his degree in business and hospitality and his work experience in the hospitality industry in China for over a decade to become one of North America’s leading experts on Chinese marketing. He created APP Marketing Solutions, a Richmond BC company that helps Canadian and international retailers to connect through mobile payment solutions and content marketing. APP’s slogan is “Empowering Canadian and International Retailers to connect with Chinese Consumers.”
Accepting Chinese digital payments gives Canadian businesses a huge advantage. “Chinese tourists and international students to Canada continue to increase every year,” Janssen says. “By connecting your local Canadian business to China’s digital payment platforms, Chinese customers can pay in their local currency from their bank in China, while Canadian retailers receive CAD at a transaction price that is cheaper than conventional credit cards. It’s a win-win for both Canadian retailers and Chinese consumers.”
APP relies on WeChat to do the heavy lifting. Unlike other apps that perform specific tasks, WeChat is a Chinese super app that handles personal messaging, phone calls, banking, social media, travel reservations, ride hauling, and food delivery. With 1.2 billion monthly users, it’s a marketer’s dream, and APP has helped many Canadian brands establish a presence on the platform. “We create content marketing for a variety of businesses including fashion brands, grocery stores, primary schools, and sports academies, all of whom attract a large number of Chinese clients,” says Janssen. “We create the content in Mandarin and give Canadian companies exposure on China’s largest social network. It’s a very powerful tool.”
Virtual platforms serve a purpose, but Janssen believes that personal contact and getting up in front of an audience is still the most powerful way to deliver his message. He’s an in-demand speaker at conferences, corporate events, colleges and other events like TEDxYouth Talk 2021. He communicates deep personal knowledge and experience on topics including China, international business and entrepreneurship.
Watch Cyrus Janssen in conversation with Chris Pereira, founder and CEO of Canadian Ecosystem Institute:
To learn more about Cyrus Janssen, go to www.cyrusjanssen.com where you’ll find plenty of informative videos and a very impressive list of international companies, which he refers to as cooperation partners.
To learn more about how APP Marketing can help your business connect with the burgeoning Chinese consumer and tourist markets, without a doubt the most valuable in the world, check out appmarketing.ca. APP has already helped over 60 firms attract and retain more customers, and can do the same for your business.