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Digital Marketing in China: our top stories for November 2020

November 30, 2020 |   Christine Lee

As we are approaching the end of the year, it’s a good time to take a closer look at the technology trends most likely to shape the future. AI avatars in livestreaming have been fast gaining momentum and are becoming an increasingly popular option for brands who are wanting to reduce the cost of their livestreaming sales promotions. Baidu is also signalling its interest in livestreaming through their recent investment in YY Live, but the acquisition is not without controversy!

Bilibili has also made significant investments into new segment to keep Gen Z users on the platform. In the education space, K12 giant Zuoyebang has received an honorable mention by the World Economic Forum for their work in online education.

Meanwhile, Chinese eCommerce platforms are starting to take stronger action to protect consumers. Pinduoduo has launched a mini program to stop the selling of fake milk formula. has partnered with Diageo to promote more responsible alcohol consumption.

1. Is Baidu’s new livestream investment really fraudulent?

Baidu announced a $3.6 billion deal to buy Joyy’s Chinese livestreaming platform, YY Live. Days later, a report published by short seller firm Muddy Waters Research attacked the credibility of YY Live calling it a fraud. Claims have been made about using bots to fake interactions on the platform and that the company is 90% fraudulent.

Recently, Chinese companies listed on the Nasdaq have come under fire, in particular by the United States. Joyy has hit back quickly to the public saying that these accusations were ignorant about livestreaming. The company behind these allegations, Muddy Waters Research has built a reputation for tackling fraud, however the company is not always correct.

Read more at Jing Daily

Learn more about WeChat mini program livestreaming

2. JD and Diageo partner on responsible drinking efforts in China, China’s largest online retailer and Diageo, the world largest international spirit producer, have reached an agreement to collaborate on promoting responsible drinking and moderate consumption of alcohol.

The agreement comes with 3 initiatives. This includes both partners collaborating to advance global standards for responsible drinking in conjunction with leading organisation such as the International Alliance for Responsible Drinking (IARD). Along with that, both companies will work with industry partners to develop a code of conduct for responsible sales of alcohol online in China. Finally, both parties will promote DRINKiQ, a responsible drinking education platform.

Read more at Wine Industry Advisor

Learn more about how to use China’s fastest growing apps for marketing

3. Gen Z favorite Bilibili moves further into content commerce

Popular Chinese video streaming platform, Bilibili has been boosting its content commerce game through a series of key investment and brand-friendly programming innovations. Bilibili has expanded its horizon from a niche focus on anime, comic and games to ad more general lifestyle offerings such as food, beauty and fitness product videos. These videos are proving to be extremely popular, with some reportedly hitting 5 billion views.

Recently, the brand highlighted opportunities on Bilibili by publishing its inaugural “China-Z 100” list. This includes a list of top 100 domestic products targeted at consumers under the age of 30. Accompanying the list, Bilibili has also taken initiative to run a livestreamed broadcast introducing the top ten products of the list.

Further investments include the acquisition of animation related collectibles firm ACToys and taking a stake in mobile video editing startup Versa. These expansions hints at Bilibili’s future potential in new area that will continue to appeal to the platforms core Gen Z user base.

Read more at Jing Daily

Learn more about China’s top 8 online shopping sites

4. AI hosts fuel China’s livestream shopping boom

AI-driven sales are emerging as a new force in China’s live streaming industry where cartoon avatars cheer and dance to promote products on live shows.

This trend is expected to shift some demand away from social media influencers with large fan followings or professional salespeople that are often engaged by brands to promote their products via livestreaming. Due to the cost of hiring, companies have started using AI-powered virtual hosts as they are cost efficient and a feasible long-term financial solution. The total scale of the country’s livestreaming e-commerce industry reached 433.8 billion yuan, with the expectation to double by the end of 2020.

Read more at China Daily

Learn more about using video live streaming in your China marketing strategy

5. Pinduoduo launches mini program to crack down on fake milk formula

Social commerce platform Pinduoduo has launched a mini program allowing consumers to verify the authenticity of baby formula products they have purchased via the app. Manufacturers including Junlebao Dairy, Yili Group, Beingmate, Wyeth, Mead Johnson, Friso and Abbott have all joined in on this initiative.

Once the milk formula has arrived, parents can scan the QR code on the packaging to retrieve information such as the products manufacturing process as well as supply chain details. If the results are inconclusive, consumers products can be sent back for further examination. Pinduoduo attributes and revenue and active users in its Q3 financial results to the launch of this new feature. Counterfeit goods are a widespread problem in China, especially in infant formula. Starting with initiatives like this, China hopes to bring this issue under control.

Read more at Pandaily

Learn more about Pinduoduo and other fast-growing apps in China

6. K12 education giant Zuoyebang awarded honorable mention by World Economic Forum

K12 online education platform Zuoyebang was awarded an honorable mention for Excellence in Digital Disruption by the World Economic Forum’s inaugural Pioneers of Change Summit. Zuoyebang addresses the demand for after-school tutoring and the rebalancing of education resources in China’s lower-tier cities. It provides China’s K12 students with digital education solutions including online learning tools, live courses and data-driven tutoring management.

Since the start of the pandemic, the advantages of online education have become more prominent, making it likely to change how people access educational resources in the future.

Read more at Pandaily

Learn more about how Chinese students cope in the world’s most competitive education system

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