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China Branding Problem

One Story about China’s Branding Problem, The Chinese embassy in Washington D.C. held its once-a-year reception commemorating the 87th anniversary of your founding from the People’s Liberation Army. As usually, the event was meticulously managed. But what struck me one of the most was an assortment of flyers on exhibit on the registration desk. In poorly intended typography, the titles in the flyers read: “China to begin with identified, named and exploited the Diaoyu Islands”, and “Japan Steals Diaoyu Islands”. 

China Branding Problem

China Branding

These flyers were entirely suitable in the course of a delicate time when the China-Japan dispute in excess of the Diaoyu Islands was a large priority to the Embassy’s outreach agenda. Nonetheless, the flyers, produced because of the Bureau of Global Publicity of the Chinese Department of Defense,appeared like some thing one particular may obtain about the bulletin board in a very Chinese authorities setting up, alternatively than skilled PR kits carrying Beijing’s concept towards the world’s very best armed forces diplomats.


That is a branding dilemma

China Branding Problem

Example of China Branding Problem

PR or marketing and advertising pros familiar with world and cross cultural communications would very easily point out a list of factors over the flyers which could be improved in order to speak the message – and by extension, the “China brand name,” with more performance and style. Chinese leaders and teachers have feverishly advocated the idea of public diplomacy, but on numerous events, the passion fails to translate into effective coverage implementation. These policies could greatly profit from design features additional empathetic for the recipient culture and less rigid in lexicon. 

It is an education problem, most of School does not teach Marketing or Branding, and you do not have specialized universities specialized in Marketing explained this Education Specialist based in Shanghai.

The China brand name has also carried out poorly inside the personal sector.

In fact, Chinese brands are perceived considerably less favorably within the American marketplace than those people of numerous East Asian rivals, for example Japan (Honda, Toyota), Korea (Samsung, LG) and Taiwan (HTC, Acer). This is paradoxical and ironic to China’s perceived standing being a worldwide power. With China’s outbound expense exceeding FDI for that initially time in 2015, American people can depend on seeing far more Chinese makes on Amazon as well as in their neighborhood supermarkets. As an illustration, for the duration of the 2015 Purchaser Electronics Show in Las Vegas, hundreds of Chinese brand names signed up, and Chinese exhibitors mostly dominated electronics underneath $100. How these makes connect on their own can have sizeable effects within the general perception on the China model.

In truth, the world’s largest financial state faces a significant China branding problem

In each policy communications and organization advertising and marketing – that are turning out to be significantly intertwined in our time. Strategists may possibly rightfully argue that the a lot less than favorable notion of China in the U.S. is usually a result of the shifting balance of electric power in environment politics; though the satan is during the facts. In the time when social media marketing and fragmented details have an impact on even quite possibly the most concentrated policy analysts, one particular flyer or a single movie clip can be all it will require to condition one’s notion of China.

It’s not not known to some officers within the Chinese overseas publicity equipment


An formal in Beijing the moment complained to me that a key obstacle dealing with the usefulness of China’s worldwide picture developing work is definitely the stringent tradition of clearance and approval, usually by senior officers with very little experience in world-wide communications.


The identical style of awareness is also mounting in the Chinese overseas company community.

The lack of comprehending of your American marketing and advertising lifestyle has grown to be a dilemma for many Chinese models that ventured out to your U.S. By way of example, a consumer we engaged in early 2015 has stellar promoting resources on their own Chinese online and offline platforms. However their somewhat new American marketing and advertising crew, comprised largely of expats with restricted experience while in the American market, has uncovered it complicated to promptly earn the hearts and minds of your American consumers. 

Just what exactly can be carried out differently?

Beijing’s policy circles have discussed general public diplomacy lengthy ample. Now is time to center on implementation and execution – by making sure that each detail in community diplomacy components excites their meant viewers, alternatively of interesting just on the inner chain of command.

This is easier stated than completed in almost any bureaucratic context

It demands a more open decision-making system, larger recognition of world and cross-cultural communications in the institutions, and ongoing session while using the meant audience. A promising development is the fact that an increasing variety of Chinese students are now researching marketing and advertising, communications, historical past, and literature at American universities. The Chinese authorities should tap into this reservoir of expertise and entrust them using the roles of developing and executing the country’s global PR campaigns.

For Chinese enterprises, managers must identify the value of branding within the American market

Ordeals that have labored in other world wide marketplaces may not utilize during the U.S. A consumer at the time claimed to me the greatest problem for Chinese models in the U.S. is identifying how you can “de-Chinesize” the brand name. The actual challenge, even so, is to find out how to be manufacturer sensitive and aware of the regional society.

Prosperous international brands have carried out so repetitively, despite the fact that not without the need of substantial upfront investments. Chinese business leaders must find out from these encounters and invest in building well-received makes, whether or not the financial returns usually are not fast.

Ultimately, China’s global manufacturer identity is shaped through the Chinese modern society – a single that’s still over the path of getting a lot more open and empathetic toward various values. China is residence towards the world’s fastest growing World-wide-web providers, but this won’t quickly convey the cultural empathy that is key to the nation and its people to developing a optimistic world-wide brand name. It could be a missed possibility for that Chinese govt to overtly emphasize the need for control in its Online governance, as discouraging its constituents to socialize globally will ultimately hurt China’s image being a world manufacturer.

Facts are vital in communications, and they are definitely the most affordable hanging fruits. Now’s the time for Chinese policymakers and company leaders to just take a renewed take a look at their branding troubles in the U.S., and begin improving upon to the aspects, one flyer at any given time.

How to work on a new brand ?

Public Relations

Public Relations is one of the key points on which any marketing strategy should be based. It is key because it allows the company to directly deal with its key stakeholders in order to trigger positive opinions about the brands and its products.  It is important to notice that the company’s key stakeholders are not only the customers (which are surely one of the most important stakeholder) but also the public opinion, the government (especially important  in China), the employees, the suppliers and so on. In order for a PR strategy to be successful, it is vital that it is fully integrated into a boarder marketing plan.

Online news sources are the main source of information for the Chinese. The majority of people, with increasing purchasing power, read more news on the Internet rather than buying a newspaper. It is thus important to adapt your PR strategy accordingly. Content needs to be tailored to the online news reader who will often spend less time reading each article, focus on the quality of the content and keep it clear and to the point.


The reputation is essential in China. Chinese people rely a lot on it to make their choice. Due to a lot of scandals happened in the past in the country, they don’t easily trust any new brand nowadays. This is the first point.

The second point you have to accept is the necessity of e-reputation or online reputation. China is a very digitalized society where people are always connected and accustomed to do their research online before going to a physical store or ordering something. Companies have to develop their O2O strategy to remain competitive on this market.

Social media

You can use different kind of social media to build your strategy:

  • For microblogging website : you have Sina Weibo and Tencent Weibo. Sina especially, is one of the most popular social media platforms in China.
  • For videos broadcasting : the trendy app of the moment is Douyin. Douyin (Tik Tok) has become the world most downloaded non-game app in the iOS App Store, according to market research company SensorTower. Young people are crazy about it. As videos are very convenient to watch, it is also popular among Chinese consumers in generally. There are many other websites and specialized on it.
  • For forums and sharing platform : the hottest one is Little Red Book (Xiaohongshu in China), which combine e-commerce and content sharing. Young Chinese people are the most connected online and followers of the last trend. On this platform, consumers are also bloggers, they present products or place they are interested in and share reviews and advices. In this way, they are building a community.

Key Opinion Leaders

KOLs has become a normal part of both industry and society vocabulary. It is regarded as the substitute of the top brands because consumers are more attached to real people and selling products through content. However there is no easy way to simply pick a KOL and make a fortune.

As long as keep the track with Chinese major social media platforms, there is no way you cannot have the target on you mind. Specifically, KOLs can be found on platforms like WeChat, Weibo, QQ, Miaopai, Douyin, Inke and more. They are everywhere and the number is growing. Take Weibo as an example, the number of influencers with more 100,000 fans increased by 57.3% from 2016 to 2017.

Special positioning

Positioning refers to the place that a brand occupies in the mind of the customer and how it is distinguished from products from competitors. Positioning is one of the most powerful marketing concepts. Positioning strategies help shape a consumers preferences which is a major source in guiding them towards a particular brand. It is essential to assess and analyse the consumers behavior and how they will or already do perceive the offered brand by recalling the company’s communications with them such as advertising or any marketing campaigns. The right positioning strategy at right time is what can help a brand build the right image of itself in the mind of consumers.

Positive reviews

The more reviews you have on these sites, and the more positive they are, the higher chance you’ll have at ranking in search engines.  Enabling customer reviews on your site can have a positive effect on your company’s organic search rankings in search engines. The number of online consumers who read and trust online reviews is increasing. According to a survey, 88 percent of consumers trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation.

Having more reviews for a product means you’ll have a higher conversion rate. This may not seem strange until you notice I said “reviews” and not just “good reviews.” That’s because the presence of bad reviews can also have a positive effect on your conversion rate. A blend of good reviews and bad reviews shows that you aren’t trying to hide anything, and makes the good reviews seem more sincere. Imagine finding a product with hundreds of 5-star reviews and not a bad or critical review in sight—you’d probably be suspicious, wouldn’t you? The more reviews you have, and the more honest they are, the more products you’re going to sell—as long as the negative reviews don’t overwhelm the positive ones.

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  1. Really Good article… Do you have an official report about Branding Problem for my School ?

  2. Really informative article, but I guess it is going better for Chinese companies, they know that and invest a lot to create new powerful brands in China no?

    Would like your feedback about that

  3. Hello

    This article has been incredibly helpful,
    gonna use the info learned for my class report,
    its so interesting to notice the differences between
    China and its western counterside.

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