How to Build a Brand in China Market


China is a burgeoning market full of opportunities. With the development of technology and the aging Chinese population, consumption patterns have changed. Under such circumstance, a growing affluent middle class, who are usually educated and discerning consumers, is showing a great influence in the market. Purchases are no longer only influenced by price. Instead, decisions are now increasingly made by perceived brand value, status and personality. In fact, they’re willing to pay more for branded products compared to their price-driven peers in other markets. According to McKinsey, 45% of Chinese consumers believe a higher price equates to better quality, compared to just 16% among US consumers.

Now, China is the world’s largest mobile market. Its rising middle class shows great potential in purchasing a variety of digital devices. One thing needs to be noted that nearly 90% of Chinese consumers use Baidu for searches. So, it is important to increase your brand presence on Baidu. A key opportunity for companies marketing on Baidu is to leverage Baidu’s Brand Zone. Brand Zone allows advertisers to own a sizable amount of search engine results page (SERP) with brand content and information, not only ensuring top placement, but owning all the space above the fold. This is akin to a SERP takeover experience, which can only be seen in Baidu and not available on other search engines.

In addition to Baidu, companies should integrate ecommerce and social media into your business. E-commerce is a cost effective way to enter a market, without having to invest in the expensive process of building retail stores. Online stores have a global reach, meaning your brand and products are much more accessible across the globe. And social media is a popular way for consumers to share their opinions and experiences. You could use social media together with e-commerce to raise the awareness of your brand among consumers. By monitoring comments, reviews and complaints, you can get a solid understanding of what your consumers think about your brand, which can guide you to make further changes.

It should be noticed that there are different social media platforms and marketing channels in China. There is no Google, Facebook, YouTube and other marketing tools which are known by the western world. Online marketing in China is similar with in the west on the aspect of methods yet different on channels. WeChat, as the current dominant social networking app, is one of the ideal platforms for you to work with key opinion leaders to promote your brand.

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