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8 Most Popular Chinese Social Media Platforms(2022 Updated)

Chinese social media platforms are quite different from the west. Facebook, instagram, Twitter, Youtube and so on are banned in China.However, there’s a range of other platforms available that businesses can use for social media marketing in China.


While none of the platforms can really be called The Chinese Facebook or Chinese Instagram, there are many platforms that share similar features and allow for paid advertising. If you want to learn about where Chinese internet users spend their time and what platforms you can use to grow your business in China this is the article for you.


WeChat: Not Just the Chinese Facebook

wechat

WeChat is the must-have social commerce platform in China, with over 1.2 billion monthly active users. Chinese users spend an average of over 70 minutes a day within the app. All this amazing data makes WeChat become one of the most popular choices for brands to get started with social media marketing in China.


WeChat allows for one-to-one personalized interaction between brands and users. In WeChat, brands can create official accounts to share content improve brand image, launch Mini-Programs for deeper engagement with consumers, share videos in WeChat Channel, and directly communicate with consumers through private traffic pools to enhance consumer's loyalty.


WeChat ecosystem is still the platform with the closest relationship with users and the highest monetization value.

Weibo: Chinese Twitter

weibo

Like WeChat, Weibo is another platform brands commonly used for social media marketing in China. As of November 2020, Weibo has had over 520 million monthly active users and 230 million daily active users.Weibo is a suitable platform for content to go viral and for KOLs to build their online communities.


Xiao Hong Shu /Little Red Book:Chinese Instagram

xiaohongshu

Founded in 2013, Little Red Book (Red) was built to be a platform primarily focused on User Generated Content, where users could share reviews and their experiences to help others with their purchasing decisions.

Red is a community-based e-commerce platform with 450 million registered users mainly residing in first-tier cities with 80% female users. According to the information publicized by Red, the platform has over 100 million monthly active users, 450,000 new posts generated daily, and exposure to over 10 billion pieces of content daily. It is prevalent among Generation Z users born in the internet era who rely on social media as their primary source of information.


DouYin

As of 2022, Douyin's daily active users exceeded 600 million, and the average number of daily video searches exceeded 400 million.Douyin marketing in China can offer wide opportunities for brands on the market.

TikTok/Douyin is a video-sharing social network by ByteDance, launched in 2017. TikTok and Douyin are similar but they run on separate servers to comply with Chinese censorship restrictions. The app lets users create short music and lip-sync videos of 3 to 15 seconds as well as short looping videos of 3 to 60 seconds.


Businesses can use the platform to post advertisements and create content. This new content format has been giving brands troubles though as short video is not something most companies are familiar with.


Douban: lifestyle and social discussion platform

Douban is a social networking platform that focuses on expressing oneself and one’s lifestyle. Users often post on Douban to discuss books, movies, music, and events. The landscape on Douban is constantly shifting and trends emerge and die off relatively quickly on the platform. This is another platform that is often considered to be something similar to a Chinese Reddit.

Douban makes it easy for users to book tickets for movies and concerts, download e-books and even listen to their own radio station, douban.fm, through their interface.Users can also connect with each other based on similar tastes and interests.


Demographically speaking, the platform is used mostly by citizens of Tier 1 and Tier 2 cities. Douban has a relatively low user base compared to other platforms, while this might deter some marketers, this is an incredible platform for promoting more sophisticated and culturally oriented products. For businesses in the arts, this is one of the most popular platforms for social media marketing in China.


Zhihu:Chinese Quora

Zhihu is a question and answer site just like the English equivalent, Quora. leading to it becoming one of China’s many “unicorn,” companies with over a 1 billion USD valuation. Zhihu started in a similar fashion to Quora, but it has become much more in recent years. Zhihu users are highly engaged, with many posts accruing tens of thousands of upvotes/downvotes and hundreds of comments.


While posts on Quora can be quite lengthy, it is common for posts on Zhihu to be over 5k words and cover incredibly specific questions. Users often include charts, graphics, and other media to further demonstrate their point and improve the quality of their answers. Zhihu has also introduced several new features which Quora has yet to emulate,



Bilibili

Bilibili is one of the most popular social media platforms in China for video sharing. This platform has covered a multicultural community with more than 7,000 interest circles. It focuses on anime-related content and video game culture, the unique “Bullet culture” makes it easier for users to have a strong sense of social interaction with others.

Bilibili has 128 million Gen Z users, accounting for 82% of the total users.The youthful community atmosphere creates high-stick user relationships. Compared with other platforms, Bilibili bloggers pay more attention to the emotional connection with fans, and their relationship with fans is closer.


Tencent QQ

TencentQQ is amongst the oldest instant messaging software creations in the Chinese digital world. Launched in 1999, it was (and still very much is) used as an instant messaging service.QQ is also owned by Tencent, you may be wondering how it is different from WeChat. QQ is much more like MSN Messenger (later named Windows Live Messenger, for those who are old enough to remember), and it’s mainly a social networking tool used by Chinese high school and university students.


WeChat on the other hand is for a more “grownup” audience and is widely utilized in the professional workplace



Key Takeaways

  • It isn’t easy to build brand awareness or conversions without relying on social media. Brands need to choose appropriate promotion methods based on the characteristics of different social media platforms to reach target customer groups.

  • Chinese digital landscape is much more fragmented and competitive than the western one. Therefore, there is not a single platform that guarantees immediate success, multichannel strategy is the best choice.

  • KOL marketing is important on all social media platform, with KOLs & KOCs on the rise, brand need to choose right influencers and collaborations with them to generate engaging content, which is a useful strategy.

  • For early-stage brands, it is not necessary to be present on all platforms. B2C e-commerce platform could be a better choice for them, because brands can leverage consistent performance-based marketing to grow sales incrementally.

  • Brands need to keep learning and understand how each of these Chinese social media sites works, and appeal to digital-savvy Chinese consumers.

Needing help create and manage Chinese social media? Contact us today!

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