15 July 2015

The Chinese social media landscape

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We all recognize the importance of social media for businesses, as there are around 69% Australians using social media – though think about social media around the globe.

Does your business have staff or office locations in other countries? What about China? Are you currently working to expand your business in China?

You will be shocked to hear that the Chinese government has blocked social media giants such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube in an effort to control and censor the Internet – making it almost impossible for foreign social media channels to enter China.

So what other channels are out there to promote your company, product or service if your go-to social media channels are blocked, the same channels that have worked miraculously well for you in Australia and other parts of the world?

Watch the video below to get an idea of the Chinese social media landscape:

Since 2008, China has ranked number 1 in the world for the highest number of internet users, with over 696 million Chinese users (as at July 2015) where approximately half of these users are on social media sites.

With such a large online market in China, do you know where to find them?

Here’s an overview of the top 3 social media channels in China…

1.      Wechat

You can consider Wechat (or “Weixin” in China) as the Chinese version of Facebook and WhatsApp in one mobile app. Although WhatsApp is currently not blocked in Mainland China, however, many Chinese people still prefer Wechat over WhatsApp due to its rich user experience.

Apart from being able to send messages via mobile device, you are also able to get up to date with your friends through “moments”, which is equivalent to posting an update or status on Facebook. Users are also able to follow groups, play games, read daily news and pay for online purchases on Wechat.

2.      Sina Weibo

Many people would see Sina Weibo as the equivalent of Twitter, however did you know that there are currently twice as many members on Sina Weibo than on Twitter? Simply calling Sina Weibo as Twitter is undermining the full ability of the popular social media platform.

Besides sending out “tweets”, Sina Weibo users are also able to keep up to date with current affairs and recent trends, download music and watch videos.

3.      Youku/Tudou

Youku and Tudou are both seen as China’s version of Youtube. Youku has partnered with over 1500 license holders and it is currently the second largest video sharing website in the world after Youtube.

Whilst many people on Youtube share videos on their everyday lives or video clips they have created themselves, Youku and Tudou users often post videos that are professionally created including live tv productions, film and documentaries.

If you are considering or doing business with China, don’t miss these social media tools which will assist you to connect with your Chinese customers.


Being brought up in a typical Chinese family in Australia, Vivian takes pride as an ABC (Australia-born Chinese) where she happily embraces both the Chinese and Australian cultures. 

In high school, Vivian wanted to become a fashion designer, however she has developed a passion for running events after working backstage for multiple live shows. Prior to starting at Akolade, Vivian worked 4 years in the wine industry and she misses the wine tasting sessions and openly drinking on the job. As the Marketing Coordinator, Vivian enjoys using her creativity to design unique and fun campaigns for each event. In her spare time, Vivian loves to spend time with her two adorable cat and dog.

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