The End Of Instagram Is Only The Beginning In China

The End Of Instagram Is Only The Beginning In China
SHARE
THIS



Following the recent protests in Hong Kong, China has officially banned Instagram, a massive issue for marketers, says Matt McDougall, CEO of digital marketing agency Digital Jungle.

The social media site, known for its picture sharing feature, was used by protestors during the demonstrations resulting in it being blocked. The site has now, however, been banned permanently.

For many marketers who use Instagram this is a major issue. Whether a brand had only one Instagram page that was available internationally, or they had a specialised Chinese page, to improve engagement, they have found themselves without a following overnight.

All hope is not lost though. While this is an undoubted burden and an unfortunate situation, marketers can use this problem to create a new and innovative presence in China. 91% of the online population of China has a social media account. This compares to only 65% in the USA. Of that percentage 88% are active on at least one site, with most having multiple accounts.

If up until now you were depending on Instagram to reach the Chinese market then this is an opportunity to build a greater network with your Chinese customers. While your Instagram account may have had a strong following in China, it is more difficult to engage with your Chinese followers who may not speak English. This would have made it difficult for them to actively engage in your site fully and restricted them to the visual elements of your page.

Now that your Instagram page cannot reach the Chinese market, your brand can develop a more specific marketing campaign on Chinese social media sites that will be more engaging to the Chinese market. Also if you did have a Chinese Instagram account, you will be looking to recover your online community. In both cases you will be looking for the best alternate site to build your brand.

While there is no direct transferable social media site, like the Facebook alternative Renren, there are many Chinese social media sites that share numerous similarities with Instagram.

Qzone has over 700 million users, a figure that is still rapidly growing as of 2014. Over 150 million users on this site also said they updated their account at least once a month, meaning Qzone has one of the most active communities in the entire social media industry. Qzone is a social networking site that enables its users to write blogs, share photos, music and other areas of interest.

Qzone shares obvious similarities to Instagram, in regards to its photo sharing capabilities. Qzone also has further features to Instagram as it takes on more of a blog form. While this may not be as instantly visually appealing as they collage of images available on an Instagram page, it ultimately can give brands the opportunity to engage further with their community.

Chinese social media users enjoy high levels of engagement online. On average Chinese people follow eight brands on social media and 43% are interested in brands that are shared or liked by their friends. A strong online presence is vital in China, where nearly 60% of users said they became familiar with brands through social media, or alternative online channels such as the company website. A further 58% of people also said they made purchasing decisions based on user-made content online; this is compared to only 19% in the USA.

Qzone’s photo album feature should particularly appeal to those who are used to advertising through Instagram. Much like Instagram it enables you to upload original photos of your products. Chinese consumers, however, respond well to personalised photos, including customers engaging with the brand or a more behind the scenes or authentic look at a brand.

Qzone enables you to do this while also supporting your images with additional features, including comments which can provide crucial feedback.

If you want to maintain a visually strong online profile then another alternative is Wanpai and Weishi. The video sharing sites both possess similar elements to pre-existing social networking sites, Wanpai has a vertical feed of one clip after another, a featured taken from Instagram. Weishi meanwhile enables content to be shared through WeChat. Weishi alone has 430 million users and WeChat has 300 million users. This shows how many people in China alone your campaign can reach.

While the banning of Instagram is a challenge, especially to those who already had a successful presence on the site, by re-focusing on Chinese social media you can create a stronger brand presence in the country with one of the highest engagement levels in social media and e-commerce in the World.

Digital Jungle are a multicultural digital marketing agency that works with Western organisations to deepen their relationships between their brand and Chinese consumers; through quality content and strategic thinking, to drive consumer action, and to deliver value and measurable results for our clients.

Please login with linkedin to comment

Acronyms Gameshow The Smith Family

Latest News

QMS’ Jemma Enright Talks The Company’s Plans For The City Of Sydney’s $300M Outdoor
  • Media

QMS’ Jemma Enright Talks The Company’s Plans For The City Of Sydney’s $300M Outdoor

Back in June 2020, QMS pulled off a major coup, snaring the City of Sydney’s outdoor assets away from rival JCDeceaux in a 10 year deal reported to be worth $300 million. COVID has made the changeover and erection of new street furniture challenging, but here B&T chats with Jemma Enright who joined the business […]

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
Two Out Of Three Australian Crypto Enthusiasts Think Crypto Will Continue To Grow Against The Dollar
  • Technology

Two Out Of Three Australian Crypto Enthusiasts Think Crypto Will Continue To Grow Against The Dollar

According to a new study by Gemini, the meteoric rise and subsequent volatility of Bitcoin has many Aussies considering whether digital assets have a place in an investment portfolio, often comparing cryptocurrencies against more traditional asset classes, such as property. Now, as concerns grow over inflation and the economic slump – motivating many investors to look […]

Facebook Releases Campaign For Ray Ban Stories Smart Glasses
  • Technology

Facebook Releases Campaign For Ray Ban Stories Smart Glasses

Facebook has officially released the campaign for the succinctly named Ray-Ban Stories: First-Generation Smart Glasses. The Ray-Ban Stories are, according to Facebook’s official release, “smart glasses that give you a new way to capture photos and video, share your adventures and listen to music or take phone calls.” They are the product of a collab […]

Two M&C Saatchi Creatives Talk Making Art To Stay Fresh
  • Opinion

Two M&C Saatchi Creatives Talk Making Art To Stay Fresh

M&C Saatchi creatives Sam Rowlands and Jason Leigh talk about their personal creative pursuits, and how it informs their advertising. Then they decided that, as they hadn’t seen each other in a long time, they’d prefer to interview each other… Sam Rowlands — art director/painter/sculptor/fashion designer (as interviewed by Jason Leigh) Sam forgot about our […]

Opinion

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
Michael Speakman Joins Esports Organisation ORDER As Head Of Commercial
  • Marketing
  • Technology

Michael Speakman Joins Esports Organisation ORDER As Head Of Commercial

Esports organisation ORDER has announced the appointment of  Michael Speakman as its new Head of Commercial. As part of ORDER’s expansion, Speakman will help navigate new commercial opportunities by offering a creative space for brands to connect, level up and deliver partnerships across the gaming ecosystem. ORDER continues to sustain its rapid expansion by appointing a […]

Hivestack Expands US Footprint With Clear Channel Outdoor Partnership
  • Media

Hivestack Expands US Footprint With Clear Channel Outdoor Partnership

Hivestack, the leading global programmatic digital out of home (DOOH) ad tech company today announced a partnership with Clear Channel Outdoor Americas (CCOA), the US based business of Clear Channel Outdoor Holdings: one of the world’s largest outdoor advertising companies. Through this new partnership, CCOA will offer advertisers a way to buy DOOH inventory programmatically […]

Samsung Announces Finalists For UNDSCVRD Tiktok Docu-Series
  • Campaigns
  • Technology

Samsung Announces Finalists For UNDSCVRD Tiktok Docu-Series

Samsung Electronics Australia has this week announced the lineup of five budding recording artists for its UNDSCVRD competition, a TikTok docu-style reality series aimed to bring the spotlight to the rising music talent in the country. The series, presented by Samsung Galaxy, brings together five musical talents from across the country who were hand-picked by […]

Indie Agency Kaimera Expands With New Hires
  • Marketing

Indie Agency Kaimera Expands With New Hires

Independent media agency Kaimera has recruited five new team members to manage its continued growth, following several new client wins including Britbox, Campos and Under Armour. Daniel Miller (pictured above) has joined from News Connect, where he was an associate programmatic trader, in the newly created role of platforms manager. In the role, he will […]

Nine’s Love Island Australia Gets Premiere Date
  • Media

Nine’s Love Island Australia Gets Premiere Date

The sexiest singles in the nation (according to Channel Nine, at least) are back on airwaves with Love Island Australia on Monday, October 4, at 9.00pm after The Block on Channel 9 and 9Now. Aussie sweetheart Sophie Monk will return to host (and play Cupid) alongside new addition, comedian Stephen Mullan a narrator, in the world-renowned reality TV […]

Yotpo Expands Down Under With  Multi-Year Shopify Partnership
  • Marketing

Yotpo Expands Down Under With Multi-Year Shopify Partnership

Yotpo is officially expanding into Australia, off the back of significant market growth with massive Aussie names, a landmark investment from Shopify and a plan to help local Aussie e-comm explode. Yotpo’s ANZ userbase includes names like Zoe Foster Blake’s $180M Go-To Skin Care,  e-commerce fashion queen Princess Polly, and billion-dollar streetwear brand Culture Kings, […]