China Social Media | Douyin means marketing success in China - China Social Media

Douyin means marketing success in China

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8 marzo, 2021
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Recently some of our customers call us and ask why platforms like WeChat and Weibo do not guarantee satisfactory marketing results as before. The answer we always deliver is: in China, things change quickly and we cannot rely on a single platform. Today we need to concentrate on Douyin and Zhihu and here we explain why Douyin is the best choice to reach new Chinese online communities.

Douyin has collected an enormous user base since its launch. According to ByteDance’s annual report in January 2020, Douyin has hit 400 million daily active users, up from 250 million the year before. According to eMarketer, Douyin users make up 67.9% of China’s mobile social network users and 59% of smartphone users. With the huge increase in its user base, the video content on Douyin has also become more diversified. For instance, trending video topics in 2019 were cooking tutorials, language learning and other forms of knowledge sharing. Thus Douyin has successfully shifted to include knowledge, culture and art in its repertoire, enabling it to attract new user segments such as professionals and families.

There are numerous influencers representing the beauty, food and beverage, parenting and child care, auto and other sectors. It’s obvious that Douyin KOL promotions are highly effective and have a high sales conversion rates. However, Douyin is a very expensive platform. So are its KOLs.

 According to QuestMobile, in September 2020, the number of active Douyin users per month reached 600 million. Monthly usage time per capita reached 1,569 minutes, or 26.6 hours. Considering the success of this app, Douyin marketing in China can offer wide opportunities for brands on the market.

How Douyin helps to enhance e-commerce

Marketing on Douyin enables brands to integrate e-commerce. For example, the most common way to sell on Douyin is to link it to a Taobao store. Recently, Douyin added a function that allows brands to connect an account not only with Taobao, but also with JD and Tmall. This opens up new opportunities for Douyin marketing in China and makes it easier to sell through the app. However, there is one condition: this function can only be used by any brand with more than 10 posts on Douyin.


Advertising is one of the most effective ways to directly drive traffic on Douyin. Promoted videos on verified accounts with a blue Vdrive 27% more traffic to the account. There are 5 types of ad placements on the platform, including top view, full screen ads, feed ads, banner and title sponsor, and search ads.

3 types of ads on Douyin

There are several types of advertisements that brands can use to market on Douyin in China.

Open screen ads

An open screen advertisement appears when a user enters the application. It can be a static advertisement like a poster or a dynamic video. Static ads last for three seconds, while dynamic ads last for four to five seconds. The brand pays based on impressions, also known as CPM (cost per impression). Such advertising has a strong visual impact, which makes it more effective. The number of open screen advertisements for users per day is unlimited. However, there will be no open screen ads for new users in their first 7 days.

Feed ads

Brands can use short videos of 5-60 seconds that appear as native ads on Douyin’s feed. Because these ads integrate harmoniously into the  feed and have a strong visual impact, brands can quickly achieve their China marketing goals. The brand’s account starts building fans and allows users to share ad content with friends or on other social networks. It helps in spreading brand awareness across multiple platforms.

Sticker ads

Brands can create customized stickers to promote a product or their company. Douyin users can use these stickers to create content. For example, Vivo has actively used stickers to promote its new phones. They started a company in which they offered users to shoot videos for a specific song and with specific stickers. Users with the most likes received prizes from Vivo. The brand’s stickers ranked as the fourth most popular TikTok sticker in China. Such advertising implies native usage and long-term interactions. Sticker videos inspire other users to get involved, which expands the reach of the brand.

KOC marketing in Douyin

While KOLs are the macro-influencers of China, KOCs are the micro-influencers. Like the foreign facing TikTok, Douyin is filled with micro-infuencers, and the short-video app would be the ideal platform to launch a KOC marketing strategy. The advantages to KOC marketing on Douyin are that the influencers come off as much more authentic and are more likely to be loyal to a brand.

Additionally, Douyin’s sophisticated algorithms bring a continuous flow of catered content to each user, meaning that the app feeds strongly into niche groups, giving KOC content a chance to be seen by many people of a consumer tribe who share the similar interests.

Douyin opportunities for all industries

Douyin marketing tips for F&B brands

Food and beverage brands can partner with Douyin KOLs to post food reviews or mukbangs. For example, “Pi Pi Teaches Cooking” (@ 皮皮 教), whose cooking demonstrations have attracted over 12 million subscribers. F&B brands may also be interested in culinary KOLs like Liang Wei Xian (浪 胃 仙), over 33 million subscribers) or “Battle of Xiang Xiang” (翔翔 大 作战 Fly) over 13 million subscribers.

Also, brands can promote their account by arranging culinary challenges, tasting and encouraging users to join. Food and beverage content is one of the leading categories on Douyin.

Do you want to connect with Chinese consumers through Douyin? Contact us

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