Chinese market has much potential and attractive to many brands. However, the way to operate businesses is somehow different from what we are doing now. The Chinese market is a much isolated market that outsiders need to adopt to local culture as well as tradition. Give a brief introduction for anyone interested in developing the Chinese market.
As more people and businesses around the world are going online, the number of online users in China reached 537 million in June 2012 and seemed to continue in growing. The Chinese e-commerce market is expected to surpass the U.S. by 2015. The most successful e-commerce company in China is considered to be Alibaba.com. The company owns the most share in both B2C and C2C market by elaborating its Taobao website (which is equivalent to ebay and Amazon). The company has also developed a online payment system called Alipay which is what we called Paypal in Chinese version.
China is the world’s largest social network market. Its market composition varies considerably from the rest of the world. International social media player Facebook, Twitter and Youtube are all blocked in face of the ‘Great Wall” of China. However, China’s social media landscape is not incomparable with its western counterparts. Tencent’s Qzone was the most valuable social media brand in China as of 2013 and continues to be influential in China til present day. Basically Qzone is the combination of Facebook and Tumblr where users can share photos, leave messages and blog.
Micro blogging services Tencent Weibo and Sina Weibo ranked second and third in the most valuable social network brand ranking in 2014 which the nature is much similar to Twitter. In addition, Weibo are most used for the acquisition of social news and information about interesting people such as entertainers or commentators. Seeing its potential for advertising and marketing, some forty percent of the top 500 Chinese companies had their own micro blogging accounts by 2012.
Another commonly used social media form in China is instant messaging (considered to be Wtaspp). The most popular instant messengers in China are QQ and WeChat. Both are operated by Chinese internet giant Tencent. In addition to their already existing aptitude for mobile devices, recent instant messenger versions have integrated vital social network properties such as sharing pictures, raising once more the future of social media platforms.
The nature of digital marketing in China is similar to the Western style but somewhat different. Players who are interested in this potential market should carefully choose the appropriate platform to reach target customers. Again, China seems to has much potential for many businesses, as I believe the number of users will continue to grow.