Chinese Social Media Networks
As a messaging platform similar to Skype, QQ offers Web communication functions such as video chat, text messaging, voice chat, and features that allows users to send files on and offline. At June 2014, QQ’s monthly active users (MAU) hit 829 users. Released in China in 1999 by Tencent, QQ is the grandfather of Chinese social media and has since expanded to include social games, music, shopping, and microblogging. This year, the service recorded more than 200 million simultaneous online users. As it is an older platform, QQ has had to offer additional features in order to stay relevant – and it did so with its instant messaging app Mobile QQ. After launching the mobile payment space with QQ Wallet, newly integrated lifestyle services include, bars restaurants, shopping, and even health consultant. Users are normally students.
In 2014, Sina Weibo arrived to 167 million monthly active users. And despite competition from newer player WeChat, financial results, show Weibo’s third-quarter revenues grew 58 percent year-over-year to $84.1 million. Weibo has an active presence in the Mainland market – especially among the younger demographic. Weibo’s sway has a lot to do with its influential user accounts such as business tycoons, Asian celebrities, and media figures. It initially launched as “Sina Weibo,” but shed the “Sina” prefix back in March. Despite it being called China’s “Twitter clone,” Weibo is a far friendlier platform for marketers, as brands can promote their events and online stores through video, live broadcast, and celebrity interviews. Coach is one of Weibo’s top brands as it focuses on interacting with followers and running mini-campaigns. For example, their 2013 “New York Style” campaign featured five Chinese fashion bloggers in a video, then had fans voting on their favorite street styles for a chance to win Coach merchandise. With more than 640,000 followers and 3,200 posts, Coach was named “Most Digitally Competent American Fashion Brand in China” in 2013 by the Digital IQ Index.
Tencent has other social networks up its sleeve such as Qzone – a social networking website launched in 2005 that offers similar services to QQ such as blogging, photo sending, music, and videos. Tencent 2014 first-quarter figures put Qzone monthly active users at 644 million. Although Qzone is primarily a blogging platform, it also has similarities to Facebook, as brands can promote their products via fan pages. For example, according to the Nanjing Marketing Group, Chinese smartphone company Xiaomi sold its Redmi device on Qzone in March of this year and scooped up 15.18 million pre-orders in just one week.
If you don’t know Douyin and how it rocked the Chinese social media ecosystem in 2018, then you’ve been hiding under a rock. Douyin is arguably the most beloved app among China’s youth. Douyin claims to have more than 200 million daily active users (DAU) and more than 400 million monthly active users (MAU).
WeChat or微信in Chinese is an instant messaging application that is quickly becoming the most popular in the world. When launching the WeChat application, it was very similar to WhatsApp with the basic functions of a chat application (call, IM, send photo, video).However, these last years WeChat has evolved tremendously, it now offers features reuniting Facebook, PayPal, Shazam…Brands can set up a WeChat service account, which allows them to engage with customers by sending targeted material and use affiliate sales channel Weidian to analyze their users’ shopping habits and preferences. Businesses can also place QR codes in high-trafficked places for users to follow their brand using a strategy 020. If you want to develop the market in China, we strongly recommend you to create a company account on this application.
WeChat mini-programs are “sub-applications” within the WeChat ecosystem. They enable to provide advanced features to users such as e-commerce, task management, coupons etc. Key Opinion Leaders such as Yu Xiaoge started to boast more than 1.5 million USD of monthly sales through their e-commerce mini-programs.
Yizhibo, the live-streaming app of choice for Chinese millennials, has proven to be a major force in the current Chinese information-sharing ecosystem; in 2017, the app ranked #1 in user acquisition among competing platforms. The makers of Yizhibo, who have undoubtedly capitalized on the booming short video and live-streaming trend, are focused on content marketing, e-commerce collaborations, and information sharing from sports properties, media, celebrities, and government municipalities.