China Day at Cannes: Tencent puts AI at heart of Chinese digital growth

22/06/2017

Chinese internet giant Tencent hosted "China Day" at Cannes Lions and won its first Gold Lions Award, the Cyber Lions, for its QQ Alert.

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Chinese internet giant Tencent hosted "China Day" at Cannes Lions and won its first Gold Lions Award, the Cyber Lions, for its QQ Alert.

Reflecting China’s growing importance in the global brand, advertising and marketing industries, China Day was the only national signature program to be held on Cannes Main Stage.

SY Lau, Senior Executive VP of Tencent, Chairman of Tencent Advertising, Chairman of Group Marketing and Global Branding, said: “Today, China is the world’s largest mobile market with 695 million mobile internet users, and the number is still growing rapidly.

“As one of the most mobile-oriented countries in the world, China’s digital economy accounts for as much as 30.61% of its total GDP, and its growth rate is the world’s fastest. Today, digital transformation is penetrating every aspect of Chinese society, and digital is the norm. China is transforming from a follower to a leader in the digital economy, becoming a true ‘Digital Nation,” he continued.

China’s “ABC economy”

SY Lau revealed three key drivers of innovation – ABC for short – through which the business and creative world will usher in China’s digital economy; Artificial Intelligence, Big Data and Cloud Computing, respectively.

Tencent has been researching and developing AI technology in four fields: machine learning, computer vision, speech recognition and natural language processing which will help to enhance our leadership in content, social networking, games, and cloud platform tools. And in each field the company has already made a number of developments. Tencent’s “Fine Art” go-playing robot won the championship in Japan’s Computer Go UEC Cup, and Tencent has applied AI technology to improve voice and facial recognition, social advertising intelligence and many other fields. Meanwhile, the company has created related technology available to government, banks, logistics, construction and other partners.

“AI will be the core force driving the evolution of marketing in the future. The focus of marketing will evolve from ‘Big Idea’ to ‘Big Data’, and from precision marketing to predictive marketing. The only way to advance in our quest towards the holy grail of marketing is to embrace this trend,” said SY Lau.

During Cannes Lions, Wei Liu, Director of Computer Vision of Tencent’s AI lab, spoke with Jean Lin, Global CEO of Isobar, on the main stage. Dr. Liu said: “AI Lab is striving to improve AI's abilities in understanding, decision-making and creation. AI can help us understand consumer demands better and faster. In addition, AI will help generate a strong emotional connection between brands and consumers, deepen their interactions, and create an unprecedented marketing experience.”

With the continued development of the Internet and the rapid growth of data capacity, Big Data will become the ultimate competitive advantage for businesses. Tencent has years of experience in massive data operations, and the total storage of its data storage center exceeded 1,000PB, more than that of 15,000 largest libraries, including the US Library of Congress, in the world combined. Tencent ranks first in China in terms of the number of uploaded images and video views, as well as mobile “red envelope” cash gifts.

Cloud Computing is becoming the core infrastructure supporting the development of the global digital economy. Ma Huateng, Chairman and CEO of Tencent, suggested that future companies will process big data on the Cloud with AI. “Cloud Companies” are trending not only in China but in the rest of the world. Today, many companies are no longer limited to simple ‘webification’; instead, they are rapidly moving back-end operations and data to the Cloud. Tencent focuses on providing enterprises with cloud computing infrastructure, along with AI, location-based services, security and other capabilities to promote the development of China’s digital economy.

QQ Alert

Tencent’s first Cannes Gold Lions Award win came with the Cyber Lions for its QQ Alert: Hope Never Dies, which leverages the 861 million monthly active users on the platform and AI-driven facial recognition technology,developed by Tencent Youtu Lab,to help find children missing in the Golden 72 hours, as well as years later. To date, QQ Alert has publicized 286 Notices for Missing People and helped locate 176 children and reunite them with their families. QQ Alert also won the Bronze Lions Award in the Mobile category.


QQ - ALERT from kevinarffandy on Vimeo.

Recently, Tencent Social Ads and Cannes Lions entered into a strategic cooperation to bring digital social networking to Cannes. Through multi-level cooperation, the two parties have driven brand marketing innovation in the mobile social era; and together with domestic top-caliber creative talents, the two parties launched IDEA + Creative Lab to promote the integration of Chinese brands with international creativity. During Cannes Lions, Tencent Social Ads promoted the exchanges among top creative professionals at home and abroad by sponsoring The Clubhouse. Cannes Lions also cooperated with Tencent Social Ads in launching a WeChat official account so that audiences who cannot attend in person can enjoy highlights of the event.

As the world’s largest annual event in the communications, advertising and creative industry, Cannes Lions draws attention from major enterprises worldwide. This year, 15,000 guests from more than 90 countries participated in the event.

Artificial Intelligence

• China generates the most volume of digital data in the world, every day.
• Marketing will go from ‘Big Idea’ to ‘Big Data’ and precision marketing to predictive marketing
• Tencent is developing AI tech in four fields: content, social networking, games and cloud platform tools
• Tencent’s “Fine Art” go-playing robot won the championship in Japan’s Computer Go UEC Cup
• Tencent has applied AI technology to improve voice processing, face recognition, social advertising intelligence and many other fields.
• Meanwhile, the company has created related technology available to government, banks, logistics, construction and other partners.

Big Data as the ultimate competitive advantage

• Currently, the value of data at most is being used to measure ROI for media investments. Many companies still face the challenge of data silos and direction of integration, which at times could be due to reality of market operation.
• As of May 2016, the total storage of Tencent’s data storage center exceeded 1,000PB, more than that of 15,000 largest libraries, including the US Library of Congress, in the world combined.
• Tencent ranks first in China in terms of the number of uploaded images and video views, as well as mobile “red envelope” cash gifts.

Cloud Computing

• Pony Ma, Chairman and CEO of Tencent, said “The future of companies is to process big data by AI and in the Cloud.”
• The “Consumption of Cloud” will be a key metric to assess the economy rather than the “Consumption of Electricity” that was adopted during the industrial age.
• For this reason, the Tencent Cloud business today is becoming the strategic business operation as we see the significant value it has as the very first step for companies to embrace the world of algorithm, deep learning and other Artificial intelligence technology.

• Tencent focuses on providing enterprises with cloud computing infrastructure, along with AI, location-based services, security and other capabilities to promote the development of China’s digital economy.
• Traditional fields such as finance, government, public security, transportation, media and manufacturing, including heavyweight clients including HKEx, CGNPC and Sany Heavy Industry have chosen to migrate Tencent Cloud. In 2016, revenue from Tencent Cloud services more than tripled from the previous year, and the growth rate ranked the first among Cloud service providers.

• During the China Day forum, Kiki Fan, General Manager of Planning & Implementation Department of Tencent Online Media Group moderated a panel discussion with Zhang Minyi, Deputy General Manager of Social Advertising Department of Tencent; Yan Xuan, President of Nielsen Greater China; Asmita Dubey, CMO of L’Oreal China; and Chee-Guan, Group Executive Creative Director, Ogilvy Shanghai. They discussed:

o How Tencent today is connecting people to people and people to content
o Three trends Western companies can learn from China: speed of adoption, risk taking and innovation
o How to leverage big data into insight
o The importance of turning consumers into fans
o How Tencent supplies data-driven insight across the entire customer journey

• Liu Wei, Director of Computer Vision of Tencent’s AI lab, spoke with Jean Lin, Global CEO of Isobar, on the main stage.
o AI can help us understand consumer demands better and faster.
o AI will help generate a strong emotional connection between brands and consumers, deepen their interaction and create an unprecendented marketing experience.

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