China Marketing Blog

China Marketing Weekly: How To Get Into the Chinese Market With a 500 USD Budget

Wiktoria Marszałek — Thu, 11/15/2018 - 18:00


Double Eleven is finally over! Hopefully it means the endless streams of promotional messages are finished too! Brands and e-commerce platforms managed to leverage their sales once more - scroll down for some numbers.

Also, don’t miss Tait’s “how to” post about entering China with a tight 500 USD budget! And our trending topics on social media.

Dig in!


On The Blog

Entering China’s market doesn’t mean you need to invest like Starbucks or Coca-Cola. On the blog Tait explains how to get into Chinese e-commerce with a budget of under 500 USD and gives a peek of our strategy planning process for working projects. Read it here - and please- share with us: how would you use such a tiny budget?
- Wiki



Stan Lee, the father of Marvel passed away. Fans on Weibo expressed their gratitude. “Rest in peace. Perhaps heaven needs super heroes too,” says one Weibo user. “Grandpa Lee has gone to a parallel universe,” said several others- referencing the many parallel universes that compose the Marvel multiverse. - Read more (Chinese Weibo thread)
- Tait


The film “Venom” made 111 million on its opening weekend in China. The movie scored 7.4/10 from fan reviews on Douban, just a bit higher than the IMDB reviews. The movie’s Chinese name translates into “Venom: Guardian of Life”, perhaps to take a more positive look on the psychotic brain-eating anti-hero. Commenters on Douban, which tend to be a more “intellectual” crowd, also noticed that the movie was on the light side. Rather than an R-rated trip into the violent parts of our psyches, Venom was “cute” and “like a pet”.  - Read more (English)
- Tait


Kris Wu sweeps iTunes’ Top 10 songs chart in the US - and is taken down right after. The Chinese singer, while on top in China, isn’t well known in the US. After the album’s release, his press office posted on Weibo and Wu’s Chinese fans leveraged the sales. The album managed to top even Ariana Grande’s latest single. The incident caught international attention, and iTunes announced the score will not be counted in Wu’s sales chart. It also shook Chinese social media, many netizens accusing Wu and his fans of fraudulent manipulation and bringing shame abroad. Data manipulation is not an uncommon issue in China, however. - Read more (Chinese / English)
- Sesia


Social Media

TikTok - overseas version of Douyin - caps Facebook and Youtube downloads in October, making it the most downloaded app in the US. Apparently, the main reason for its popularity are the filters and camera features even Instagram cannot compete with.
Douyin made a smart move by deciding not to copy its Chinese strategy - they hired local influencers and content creators to provide authentic experiences for its American users (read more in Chinese).
Facebook, which recently rolled out a similar app (Lasso), is banned in China but will have to face Chinese competitors on its own playground. - Read more (Chinese)
- Sissi


By the end of 2018, 24.6% of the Chinese population will be on Weibo. Starting as Chinese Twitter in 2009, Weibo’s evolved into one of the most popular social platform in China; it combines features from Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram, and Reddit. It’s userbase is younger and more interactive than WeChat’s. The platform has generated over 1.5 billion USD in net ad revenue this year. - Read more (English)

A verified Weibo account with good content quality is now a “must-have” for many brands- especially in the travel, beauty, and fashion industries. Supporting it with social ads and influencer promotions is also a great way to increase brand exposure in China and build consumer trust.
- Wiki



Double Eleven shopping spree generated a turnover of 30 billion USD this year. Transaction volume was 27% higher than last year. Both overseas and domestic brands stepped up marketing budgets by at least 20% compared to 2017. Brands listed among those which spent more in their industries are Ford, Nike, Midea, and Sephora. Tencent social ads (such as WeChat ads) topped the most popular advertising channels list and Tmall is number one among e-commerce platforms when it comes to advertising budget. - Read more (Chinese)
- Phoebe


I’m always amazed how resourceful people can be when it comes to Double Eleven sales. We discussed our best deals within NMG team on Monday as well. While I was proud of my 20 RMB discount, our other team members managed to get over 1,000 RMB worth of red envelopes! It apparently takes weeks of planning, searching for good discounts, coupons, contests etc.

If you don’t believe in the 11/11 legends - one woman in Zhejiang postponed her surgery as not to miss the best deals! Does anyone remember its innocent roots as a celebration of being single?

- Wiki

Pinduoduo expands its low-cost social shopping platform abroad. They plan on working with a half million small and medium merchants from all over the world to connect them to over 300 million Chinese users. They also want to build a network that will make cross-border product circulation much cheaper. - Read more (Chinese)
- Jessie


Other News

The failure of Mister Softee’s ice-cream trucks validates growing difficulties for smaller Western businesses in China. In recent years it’s changed; right now China favours domestic companies and focuses on expanding abroad. Overseas companies are still welcome so long as they can offer something Chinese competitors haven’t figured out... yet. Brain drain is a part of the deal here  - and the Chinese are catching up fast. - Read more (English)
- Wiki


Just for Double Eleven, Alibaba released a video showing Jack Ma competing against Alibaba experts in a series of challenges, such as packing an order or doing a live-stream for lipstick. - See it here

- Wiki




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