China Marketing Weekly: What Is It That WE Struggle With When It Comes To China Marketing
This week, we talk about how becoming a “super-platform” is now the only way for an app to survive in China. Also, learn how to optimize your WeChat account’s SEO and what platforms got their advertising service blocked lately.
There’s a question we asked every time one of you subscribed to our newsletter: “When it comes to marketing in China, what are you struggling with?”
How about this time we tell you what we struggle with? I mean, the list would be long ;-) But there’s one issue I’ve encountered working on most of my projects. People come to us and hope we could help them reach Chinese customers, but they are often not willing to listen to our advice. They already made up their minds: they want us to do SEM, they have their website ready, when can we start? They don’t want to hear their Chinese website is not suited for Chinese eyes, or that maybe a better option would be to do social marketing, for example.
It’s a pattern, especially when it comes to SEM projects. It’s difficult to grow them. So, help me out, tell me what stops you from trying out new channels. Is it the budget being too tight? Or is it a fear of wasting money on marketing channels you never tried? Or something else? Challenge me! Reply to this e-mail or leave a comment on LinkedIn.
Sogou and Douyin ads are temporarily blocked. China’s watchdog decided some of their ads (with three other companies involved) promoted insulting content. The companies are now going through extra verification, and the advertising service has been suspended. - Read more (Chinese)
Influencers are the best way to reach young consumers in China. For example, Givenchy and Longchamp piggybacked on the popularity of Mr. Bags - one of the trendiest bloggers. He created limited collections for both brands, and the results were spectacular - read more here. If you’re not familiar with Chinese KOLs, go back to our post.
Chinese Super Platforms
Live-streaming is no longer enough to keep users on the popular platforms. Yingke, one of the most popular live-streaming platforms, plans on releasing several social games and apps over the next two years. The live-streaming industry is not different from any other industry in China - new competitors are popping up every day. - Read more (Chinese)
Developing their services makes sense in China’s reality, where users prefer “super-platforms” to single-purpose apps. Take Momo, for example - it’s labelled as a dating app, but it also offers services like live streaming, board games and group video chats. The platform’s revenue exceeded 470 million USD last quarter. - Read more (English)
Ctrip’s grown into the world’s top three travel platforms. How? They understand Chinese tourists and introduce “smart travel” solutions. It’s become one of the “super platforms” itself, making sure the planning and booking process for each trip goes as smooth as possible. - Read more (English)
Most of you know WeChat is a must-have in China (if you didn’t, catch up, quickly!), but do you know how to use it for your business? You can actually optimize your social media account just as you do it with your SEO - check how (in English).
Trending on Social Media
Divorce rates go up as the gaokao is over. The infamous college entrance exam is the most important part of Chinese students’ lives, and of their parents’ lives as well. I had a colleague once who told me they hadn’t watched TV at home for months because their kid had been studying for the gaokao. So, I’m not surprised parents postpone their divorce for the sake of the gaokao. After all, kids are the crucial part of Chinese families. - Read more (English)
Good news for Chinese students (and the recruiters!): it’s now easier for the students to get a visa to the UK. Starting July 6, the visa application process will be simplified, less paperwork needed, and the students will enjoy more freedom. - Read more (English)
China introduces new tariff cuts covering consumer goods and automobiles. Tariffs on home appliances, food and beverage, cosmetics and medicines were reduced from an average rate of 15.7% to 6.9%. Tariffs for cars were cut to 15%, and for auto parts to 6%. - Read more (English)
Baidu announced launching of an AI-based platform for developers during the 2018 AI Developer Conference this week. The company wants to take a key role in creating “AI-based future”, including development of smart cards, intelligent devices relying on voice and image recognition, etc. - Read more (Chinese)