China’s watchdog has been working hard recently - the grip on cryptocurrencies and gambling has tightened, and new regulations are coming regarding China’s famous cashless payments. Netizens were not being lazy either and managed to slam yet another foreign brand.
Better news: Google might be coming to China! Wait, is this good or a bad news? Tait talks about potential effects on marketing in China on the blog.
And last but not least, everyone keeps underlining how everything in China happens online but should we abandon offline marketing? Keep reading!
Google’s re-entry has been one of the most discussed topics lately. It was reported they’re going to launch a censored search engine in China. Simultaneously, hundreds of Google’s employees expressed concern that “it raised urgent moral and ethical issues.”
But, let’s assume the news is real. In my opinion, Google can win big, and that could result in a big change for marketing in China. - Read more on the blog.
Many Chinese vendors don’t accept cash anymore, and the government is getting anxious to correct this. We can expect greater enforcement to ensure that vendors still accept cash in the future. - Read more (English)
WeChat shuts down blockchain-related official account due to the latest regulation changes. Last week, we mentioned cities in China opening up to technology, but ICOs are still off-limits. Public venues in Beijing are also now banned from hosting events promoting cryptocurrencies. - Read more (English)
Taiwanese bakery chain finds itself between the devil and the deep blue sea. A visit by the Taiwanese President to 85°C Café’s LA shop triggered a boycott following claims that this showed brand support for Taiwan’s independence. An official statement said “the company firmly supports the One China Policy” outraging both Taiwanese and Western netizens; this was later claimed to only reflect the Mainland office and claims the head office won’t take an official stance. Now, their more than 600 outlets have been removed from food delivery giants like Ele.me and Meituan. - Read more (English)
Apple’s App Store has taken down more than 25,000 apps in China recently as they “violate China’s regulations”. According to Bloomberg, at least 4 thousand of them are gambling-related. These apps downloaded from the app store reportedly fraud users for 120,000 CNY! - Read more (Chinese)
China’s Uighur internment camps have been rapidly growing. “‘They said we should give thanks not to Allah, but to Xi Jinping,’ said one Uighur former inmate…”. - Read more (English)
Chinese are more emotionally engaged with their virtual identity than people in Western countries; they invest more in online living therefore they are much more susceptible to the influence of messaging they face on the Internet. - Read more (English)
788 million out of the 802 million Chinese Internet users are mobile-based. Additionally, over 569 million Internet users are shopping and paying online. Which is not surprising as Chinese super-apps provide very holistic ecosystems making user lives much easier. - Read more (English)
WeChat has altered China more than any other app. Although most people abroad still haven’t heard of it, it’s much more than simply the “Facebook of China”. It’s only existed seven years, but try living without WeChat in the mainland! Being extremely careful with Moments ads, WeChat help brands engage its users in so many ways as a must-have super-app. - Learn more (English)
China is all about digital marketing. Everyone says it and it’s true. But Luckin Coffee showed us that we shouldn’t underestimate the power of offline ads. Find one person who hasn’t seen their blue cup elevator ads. Offline ads can efficiently extend your online efforts, catch consumer attention and exercise creativity. Remember: Alibaba promotes New Retail, which, simply put, is blending offline and online experiences.
My favourites? Media management companies managing metro space in China allowing you to do a full train car makeover! Last year, when Skyworth released an eco-friendly TV, they made-over Nanjing subway cars to resemble a glade! It was unique and studies found the green colour to be beneficial to your eyes.
Another great example was when NetEase Cloud rolled out a series of “Subway Stories” - basically printing out comments users left on various songs and adding QR codes to download the app and songs. And let’s not forget the government’s campaign: “1,001 reasons to have a child”.