April 10, 2020
Jimmy Robinson on digital marketing in China

Jimmy Robinson on digital marketing in China


My main purpose for hosting the workshop is to try to educate people on sort of the key differences in the digital marketing world between the West and China. I ideally want to try to identify some of the up and coming trends and some of the unique things that make Chinese social, very, very different from that in the West. My hope would be that by end of the workshop, people will leave there realizing that they need to take action on their Chinese digital marketing efforts. The biggest difference, of course, is that all of the platforms that you would typically market on here in the United States are inaccessible inside of mainland China. It means that when you actually now want to go out and market to that specific audience you have to adapt and localize, not only the materials and the messaging, but also completely shift to brand new platforms as well. I think the complexities around the market is probably one of the biggest ones. I think, quite often, a lot of Western brands when they’re looking to approach the Chinese market place, will go in there thinking that the strategy that they have here in the United States or that they might be implementing in Europe will translate quite easily across over to the Chinese market. And more often than not, unfortunately, that is not the case. I think a lot of brands sometimes don’t realize just how different China is and that how they need to really invest in localizing everything for that key core market. One of the biggest things we would say is socialization of everything in the market. What that essentially means now is that if we’re looking at e commerce channels for example, one of the really key trends that we’re seeing in China, is live streaming happening on a lot of these e commerce channels that we now call social e commerce, which is very, very different obviously, from here the West. You don’t go on to Amazon and see someone live stream and selling new products, but that’s kind of now what people expect inside of China. And we’re seeing that this new trend, that’s really taken hold actually in 2019, is only going to continue to grow and to merge going forward into 2020. The biggest thing for me is the opportunity to network with people and also get a better understanding of what some of their challenges actually are. I like the opportunity of coming to events like this as well because I get to speak to brands who come and talk to me about some of the difficulties that they’re facing going into the Chinese market place. That for me is always a great learning experience as well because it makes me realize at what stage in the process brands are at when it comes to being China ready. And how much more work a lot of brands actually need to do when it comes to entering into the Chinese marketplace. So it’s a great opportunity for me to learn from people as well, which is why I always ask people to ask me lots of questions.

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