Wells Fargo targets Chinese firms in CA

SAN FRANCISCO: Wells Fargo is reaching out to the Bay Area's 40,000 small Chinese businesses in its most aggressive outreach effort to date to this audience.

SAN FRANCISCO: Wells Fargo is reaching out to the Bay Area's 40,000 small Chinese businesses in its most aggressive outreach effort to date to this audience.

"There is uber-competition for all audiences, and that includes small-business owners," said Chris Hammond, director of communications and business development.

The $33.8 billion banking and financial services company is reaching out to local media and hosting local events in both Mandarin and Cantonese.

"Our message is about how we can help the local small-business owner succeed," said Hammond. "But this differs from outreach to other small-business owners in how we reach out. Chinese business owners are not going to be looking at the usual [mass] media."

A key message is that small-business owners can become more successful by building a strong relationship with their bankers. Bank employees who speak Cantonese and Mandarin will be present at events.

"You can spend a lot of money investing in a big media plan, but it could fall on deaf ears," said Hammond. "We're working to be more thoughtful and reach out with a tailored message to these business owners in their community."

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