Understanding and Navigating the Chinese Market

Tue, Aug 30 2016

Understanding and Navigating the Chinese Market

Recently Icon PR hosted a PRIA Breakfast Session, inviting members to listen to Shufen Tan, General Manager of Strategic Public Relations Group (SPRG) Shanghai who shared insights into China’s media landscape and the growth in digital platforms.

Shufen holds over 20 years’ communications experience in Greater China and the Asian region, providing strategic communications and managing major campaigns for leading multi-national and Chinese corporations such as Fitbit, Nestle, Lindt, Pringle of Scotland, Langham Hotels International and Lindt, amongst others.

For Australian brands wanting to tap into the minds and wallets of Chinese consumers, it is pivotal that they understand how the Chinese digest daily news and the role the Chinese Government plays in monitoring both media, and social media. For example, Facebook is banned but the average Chinese consumer will bypass restrictions by using a VPN.

Key takeaways from Shufen’s presentation about the state of media in China include:

  • The Chinese media landscape is impressive!
  • over 1,937 newspapers
  •  9,851 magazines
  • 4,000 TV channels
  • 1,500 radio stations
  • 3 million websites – which makes for an overcrowded and complex landscape
  • Coverage is driven more by commercial interest/market forces than one would expect
  • For international stories, Chinese media will always look for a local news angle in their coverage
  • Local Chinese media also rely heavily on PR to give them stories
  • Like their Australian counterparts, Chinese journalists love an exclusive!
  • For a Communist country, commercial media enjoys relative freedom
  • Digital is increasingly becoming more important than all other media combined for audience engagement
  • There has been a significant increase in using video as a form of consumer engagement
  • WeChat app is becoming a key eCommerce platform, combining content marketing and eCommerce
  • 99% of Chinese people have a mobile, and spend 40 hours online per week on average

Shufen is visiting Australia as a guest of icon.pr to help launch Icon’s new China-focussed PR service, Icon China. 

Author: Adriana Saviane, Icon PR