Key opinion leaders, or KOLs, are major players on China social media and have an important role in most successful digital marketing strategies on the mainland. Ranging from fashion bloggers to celebrity travel photographers, KOLs have amassed large and loyal audiences largely due to the high-quality content and unique perspectives they provide in a given category.
Patterns of KOL use per industry
With this combination of influence and reach, KOLs have become a favored tool for marketers to amplify a message across a targeted audience as well as provide a localized perspective for domestic consumers who are discovering new brands and products.
There are many ways to collaborate with KOLs on social media, ranging from simple brand retweets to event attendance to custom content creation. But netizens have grown numb to endorsements as brands continue to reuse the same core group of bloggers, while unscrupulous KOLs have begun to boost their numbers with fake followers and engagement. In this environment, marketers must design more innovative integrations and look to more influential grassroots opinion leaders who may have smaller but more engaged audiences in order to improve ROI.
What You’ll Learn
This Trend Report will take a look at the latest KOL activity among top brands in the fashion, beauty, and sportswear categories, outside of mainstream celebrity endorsements. You’ll learn which KOLs are being used, and how brands are collaborating with them to boost awareness and support campaigns.
Fashion & Luxury: We’ll show you how leading brands like Chanel, Burberry, Louis Vuitton, Cartier and Tiffany work with KOLs to boost event buzz and connect with digital fashion fans.
Beauty: Perhaps no category is as closely integrated with KOL influencers as beauty and cosmetics, lead by brands like Lancome, Estee Lauder, and L’Oreal, as Chinese consumers rely on word of mouth and expert reviews to build trust as they develop their personal regimens.
Sportswear: Brands like Nike, Adidas, and New Balance rely on KOLs not only to inspire activity among a relatively new fitness audience, but also to educate them on how activewear is quickly becoming a part of everyday fashion around the world.
Key Metrics & Performance: We’ll show you key statistical trends for each category and how different KOL types are performing in support of brand initiatives.
KOL Listings: This report includes top 10 lists for the best performing KOLs for each category.
In 2014, China surpassed the United States as the world’s top source of international travel spending with nearly $165 billion spent overseas. While 67.5 million trips were taken from the mainland in 2014, China is still in the early stages of outbound tourism development as that number is projected to reach 97 million by 2023.
Skoda collaborates with Breadtrip to create rich travel content
With 42% of Chinese outbound tourists visiting Hong Kong and Macao last year, travelers are only now evolving beyond group tours and regional travel to seek authentic experiences and long-haul destinations that distinguish them from their peers.
Like shopping and ecommerce, the Chinese traveler’s consumer journey is deeply influenced by social media and emphasizes word-of-mouth from real travelers. In a 2014 survey, China tourists ranked online travel reviews as the most influential factor in booking trips, ahead of even friends and family. Whether seeking inspiration or planning information for a specific itinerary, China travelers place the utmost trust in the real experiences of their peers.
What You’ll Learn
The China Online Travel Trend Report will analyze the key platforms of the booking, planning, and sharing phases of the consumer journey, and show you how the most innovative brands are inspiring and educating consumers through campaigns with Ctrip, Qyer, Mafengwo, and Breadtrip.
Online Travel Agencies (OTAs): We’ll show you how major players like Ctrip and Tuniu have become the hubs for online travel bookings, and we’ll analyze how some of the most innovative campaigns on the platform are converting travel interest.
Outbound Travel Portals: You’ll learn the crucial role travel planning platforms play in outbound tourism for educating first-time travelers and see how leading brands are leveraging these independent travel communities to create high-quality content.
Mobile Travel Apps: We’ll take a look at how a new generation of mobile apps are making it easier for Chinese travelers to share their experiences through visually engaging trip journals that allow them to show off to their peers and inspire new waves of visitors.
Key Opinion Leaders: You’ll see how brands are partnering with grassroots influencers within these travel communities to create expert content that provides all the information that online researchers are looking for.
Multichannel Integrations: We’ll reveal how brands are integrating online travel platforms with Weibo to amplify content reach and inspire trip planning across social media.
O2O: You’ll learn how brands are leveraging online communities to create offline experiences where they can connect with a new generation of independent travelers.
User-Generated Content: We’ll show you how word of mouth is a top priority for all travel brands and how recent campaigns cultivate high-quality guides and journals to inspire other users.
With access to Instagram restricted on the mainland since late 2014, Nice has emerged as one of the most compelling mobile apps for brands to engage with China’s photo-sharing consumers with over 15 million users and 1.2 million photos uploaded daily.*
Nice works with fashion brands to extend influence both online and offline
Launched in 2013, the Nice mobile app originally began as KK Shopping and was a streetwear-focused mobile commerce platform that was inspired by Swaag in the West. But founder Zhou Shou soon realized that he wanted to build a community among China sneaker collectors first, and began emphasizing photo-tagging as a way of connecting users with shared interests.
Nice combines the overall photo-sharing experience of Instagram with in-image tagging functionality that allows users to tag brands, locations, people, and sentiments. This functionality has struck a chord with China social media users as it enhances the ability to “shai” or show off by adding brand identification to photos, emphasizing individual knowledge and style. By cultivating communities around user-generated tags, Nice has created a unique paradigm for social discovery that allows users to connect around brand and product ownership – which creates a compelling tool for marketers.
What You’ll Learn
The Nice China Social Trend Report will take an in-depth look at one of the most popular photo-sharing apps in China and reveal how brands are engaging with its users to boost brand awareness and product demand through image sharing and tagging.
China Photo-Sharing Ecosystem: We’ll show you some of the most popular photo-sharing apps in China and how Nice stacks up against them in terms of downloads and tagging activity.
Nice User Journey: We’ll go in-depth on all of the features that make Nice unique and help it promote social discovery and community through photo-sharing and tagging.
Tag Analysis: You’ll learn which brands and categories are trending on Nice through organic tagging by China consumers.
Brands on Nice: We’ll explore how brands are opening official accounts on Nice and how they are creating content to engage with audiences.
Campaign Sharing on Nice: You’ll see how some of the most innovative brands are collaborating with Nice to promote content upload and sharing to support their initiatives on Weibo and WeChat.
O2O on Nice: We’ll reveal how retailers are leveraging Nice brand-tagging to boost awareness and drive traffic to offline stores.
Ecommerce on Nice: You’ll also learn how marketers are integrating ecommerce to create demand for limited edition products and boost conversion on Tmall.
Key Opinion Leaders: We’ll analyze how celebrities and KOLs from Weibo and WeChat are building audiences on Nice and optimizing their content for the app.
Grassroosts Influencers: We’ll show you how a new generation of influencers are emerging on Nice and attracting engaged audiences through high-quality content and rich tagging.