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Digital Marketing in China: our top stories for September 2020

September 30, 2020 |   Christine Lee

This month, we share a broad spectrum of articles that caught our attention, starting with how luxury brands can choose the right video platform to engage their target audience and why imported goods are in high demand at a time when travel is restricted. We talk about golden week travel plans within China and how the Chinese economy recovery is in the hands top tier cities and how Douyin has hit 600 million daily active users. With a recent announcement at the UN climate conference, we discuss the message President Xi Jinping shares. Finally, we discuss what a possible investigation into Alipay and WeChat Pay would reveal and if it is a good time for this investigation.

1. How should luxury brands pick the right video account platform in China? 

It’s no secret that short video streaming and video content generally are fast gaining in popularity in China, not least due to the stellar success of Douyin. Other social media channels were quick to follow suit and are offering new video features to content creators, opening up new ways for luxury brands to engage with their target audience in China.

Jing Daily analyses the different video marketing channels available to luxury brands, based on their ability to support an overall strategy. For example, second-hand luxury reseller brand Secoo uses Douyin as a platform to showcase their products. Because vintage luxury bags are difficult to buy in the mainstream market, users are willing to purchase them on a credible platform.

Read more at Jing Daily

Learn more about how to use live streaming in your China marketing strategy

2. Imported good to steal limelight at Tmall gala

For this years November 11th campaign, Tmall Global is looking to help 2,000 in-demand overseas brand break the 1 million yuan sales threshold. At a time where international travel is heavily restricted, there is a significant growing demand for imported goods among Chinese consumers. The need for a trusted channel for brands to reach Chinese consumers is equally as high while domestic shoppers are looking for ways to buy quality products abroad. Along with that, Tmall is setting up a livestream studio in their warehouses where hosts can share their experience with imported products. Virtually nonexistent three years ago, livestreaming now accounts for 4 percent of total online retail and 1 percent of total retail sales in China. Although seen as a positive impact in the retail sector, industry experts wanted livestreaming could cut into margins, making it unsustainable in the long run. Livestreaming has influenced the overall rate of fast-moving consumer goods sold on products and as a result has depressed average selling prices.


Learn more about how brands can deliver an exceptional customer experience in China

3. What would a possible anti-trust investigation into Alipay and WeChat revel? 

China’s top antitrust agency is looking carefully into whether to launch a probe into the country’s largest online payment platforms Alipay and WeChat. The central bank has argued that both key players have used their dominant position in the market to stamp out the competition. In an especially risky time when COVID-19 has affected small to medium sized businesses and brick and mortar shops the hardest, regulating digital payments means also curbing online shopping which could affect businesses once again.

Read more at Jing Daily

Learn more about WeChat’s new content sharing policies and how they affect brands

4. The Chinese version of TikTok now has 600 million daily active users

Douyin, the Chinese version of the popular short video application TikTok has hit 600 million daily active users as of August according to parent company ByteDance. With over 22 million creators making USD $6.15 billion on the platform over the past year, the company has announced plans to invest traffic resources to support creators and aim to double their income in the coming year. Despite recent challenges in the US, TikTok and Douyin have also been seeing steady growth. TikTok has reported hitting 700 million monthly active users in July with over 2 billion global downloads. Although Douyin has more advanced features, the core feature of creating short videos has been the main attraction for both applications.

Read more at CNBC

Learn more about 5 ways marketers can take advantage of the Douyin app

5. China's retail recovery still rests on richer consumers

Post pandemic recovery is on its way as Chinese consumers are finally starting to spend after months of quarantine and isolation. But, recovery is unbalanced and overly reliant on luxury goods, with lower class Chinese citizen still cautious about their spendings.

Luxury spending in China is estimated to grow around 20%-30% this year, but much of that growth is from the 50 largest and richest cities. The rest of the country only bought a quarter of all luxury goods and their spending was down 4% compared to 2019. The mainland China retail market has seen strong demand in the market due to pent up demand, where their desire to spend money is accumulated overtime. Although this rebound is seen as a positive effect in the market, industry experts can’t say if this will be sustainable.

Read more at Bloomberg

Learn more about China’s top 8 online shopping sites

6. Ready. Set. Holiday: China's golden week travelers head for wide open space

October 1st marks the start of the eight day “golden week” break which includes National Day and also Mid-Autumn Festival. Currently, China is classified as low risk as it has not reported any locally transmitted cases for over a month. Although this is the case families are reminded to stay put and stay vigilant against the coronavirus during this time. Since people cannot travel abroad, domestic travel searches have skyrocketed. Due to the pandemic warnings, people have shifted from making overseas trips to domestic long stay trips. During a time of uncertainty, everyone has different perspectives on whether or not travelling is safe. But one thing is for sure, golden week is a time to spend with family and close friends no matter where you are.

Read more at SCMP

Learn more about 11 Chinese e-commerce festivals you need to mark in your diary

7. Climate change: China aims for 'carbon neutrality by 2060'

As the world’s biggest source of carbon dioxide emissions, President Xi Jinping announced at the UN gathering to have CO2 emissions peak before 2030 and achieve carbon neutrality before 2060. Emissions from China continued to rise in 2018 and 2019 even when the world began to shift away from fossil fuels. While the pandemic positively effected China’s emissions to plunge by 25%, by June emission levels bounced back as coal-fired plants, cement, and heavy industries re-opened. Observers agreed that this announcement from China is a significant step, as the rest of the world progresses with its transition away from fossil fuels that cause climate change.

Read more at BBC

Learn more about 3 must-dos for B2B companies entering the China market

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