The non-market values of changes in grassland management stimulated by changes in policies were estimated by choice modeling. Four-hundred twenty-seven residents of Hohhot city in Inner Mongolia were selected using the popular mobile phone application WeChat. Conditional logit (CL) and random parameter logit (RPL) models were estimated to analyze the preference of respondents for environmental and social attributes. Based on the preferred RPL model, the average per household willingness to pay over 10 years for the best policy outcome scenarios was estimated to be CNY892 (US$141). The total willingness to pay for this policy change, extrapolated to the population of Hohhot, was CNY208 million (US$33 million). The findings suggest that environmental and social outcomes are valuable to Chinese residents of a regional urban center. Such values should be viewed as a public financial base for market-based mechanisms for grassland protection both in China and internationally. WeChat proved to be convenient but required the application of extrapolation caveats relating to sample representation.