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To keep you on top of how digital marketing is changing in China, here are some key developments and trends we've identified.
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Digital ad spend in Latin America is set to double by 2016, with Brazil leading the way, according to new research.
Amazon has launched its first paid-for Android apps in China, beating Google, which has offered only free apps.
Chinese ecommerce giant Alibaba has bought an 18% stake in Sina’s Weibo microblogging site, for roughly $586m.
Baidu is in talks to buy online video firm PPS Net TV as the Chinese search giant looks to expand its web presence, according to a new report.
The US and China have more than 5 times the active installed users than that of the UK, the world's third largest market. iOS and Android device adoption is also very high for both China and the US, China added 150 million devices to its base between January 2012 and January 2013, while the US added 55 million.
China has overtaken the US in terms of having the most active Android and iOS devices, according to new data.
This chart shows the breakdown of social network users by age. China's social networking sites are the most popular with 20-24 year olds, the site with the highest percentage of 20-24 year olds being 51.com. Across all the sites studied, social networks are used more by the 30-34 year age group than they are with users aged 15-19.
This chart shows the rise (and projected rise) of social network ad spend for Chinese marketers, alongside the percentage change from the previous year (blue line) and percentage of total ad spend (red line). The market will experience rapid growth over the coming years with overall spend estimated to reach US$789.5m.
The number of people using the internet in China rose by 10% last year to 564m last year, with 75% of those having access via mobile devices, according to new figures. The data, from the China Internet Network Information Centre, found that the number of Chinese web users who logged onto the internet from mobile devices, including phones and tablets, rose by 18.1% to 420 million in 2012. The rise comes despite the introduction of tighter content rules by Communist leaders, and means that 42.1% of the total Chinese population has internet access during 2012.
Jack Ma, founder of China's Alibaba.com, is stepping down as chief executive but will remain chairman. Since forming the company in 1999, Ma, a former English teacher, has built up the company to become an ecommerce powerhouse. The company has 24,000 employees and is estimated to be worth $40 billion. By its own measure, Alibaba grew to surpass Amazon and eBay combined in terms of sales volume last year. In the first 11 months of 2012, it recorded $157 billion in transactions on its platforms. $3.1 billion of that came in a single day on the company’s 11/11 Shopping Festival.
Apple’s marketing boss has quashed rumours that the firm is planning to produce a budget version of its iPhone. Phil Schiller, head of marketing at Apple has told a Chinese newspaper that “cheap smartphones” will “never be the future of Apple’s products”. The comments to the Shanghai Evening News follow soon after reports from The Wall Street Journal and Bloomberg that said a cheaper iPhone was in the works.
China's Web users have increased by over 10% since December 2008, reaching nearly 540 million. However, the chart shows how the rapid growth has decreased over time. As of June 2012 the number of online Chinese citizens equalled just under 40% ot the total population.
Google has axed a censorship notice on its Chinese search engine, as the firm looks to build on its paltry 5% market share in the rapidly growing market. Launched 6 months ago, the censorship warning notified Chinese users that their searches are filtered by the nation's ‘Great Firewall’. For instance, when people tried to search for the term "freedom" from mainland China, they would get a pop-warning from Google that said, "We've observed that searching for [freedom] in mainland China may break your connection to Google for a short while. This interruption is outside of Google's control," and it would give the person the option to change the search term or search anyway.
For the international marketer, China represents one of the largest digital audiences in the world. With over 550m now online, 400m connecting via mobile, and over 300m on social media in China, the digital audience is growing fast. This article looks at six key social networks in China.
As Facebook passes the billion users mark, this infographic from Silverpop looks at the top 20 social networks in the world, and charts the growth of the medium of the past decade. Facebook and Twitter are the big hitters with one billion and 500 million users respectivley, They are followed by Google+ and the big networks in China, Weibo and RenRen. The rest of the top 10 is filled by LinkedIn, Badoo, Instagram, Yelp and Tumblr.
Chinese ecommerce giant Alibaba is reportedly planning to invest in micro-blogging platform Sina Weibo, as it looks to expand its social media reach in China. The report, from China Business News, states that Alibaba plans to buy a 15-20% stake in the Twitter rival, which is hugely popular in China. The report said the investment would increase Sina Weibo’s value to between US$2bn and $3bn.
Global online advertising revenues will reach $143 billion in 2017, with the US still leading the market, with China catching fast, according to a new report. The Online Advertising Forecasts report, from Digital TV Research, estimates that the 2017 total is more than double the $66 billion recorded in 2010 and considerably up from the $92 billion predicted for 2012.
This chart shows the rise of smartphone owners compared with previous PC and laptop owners. The growth in PC has slowed considerably since June 2011. The adoption of smartphones over this period has increased dramatically, with smartphone ownership exceeding PC ownership in June 2012.
Chinese smartphone owners are one of the key drivers for rising web use. This chart shows that in less than 5 years the number of smartphone users has grown by over 33 million, accounting for 72.2% of total web users. One of the main reasons for this growth is attributed to the affordability of smartphones over PCs and laptops.
China’s online ad spend is forecast to increase 13.4% to reach 394 yuan ($63bn/ £39bn) during 2012, despite uncertain outlooks in both the Eurozone and the U.S. economy, according to a report. The forecast was made in GroupM’s “This Year, Next Year: China Media Forecasts” report, which also predicts an 11.6 percent hike in 2013 to reach RMB 439 billion.
Chinese social networks are growing at a brisk pace though, with 95% of Chinese residents in the major cities use social networking sites. The infographic, provided by BestFreeOnline, shows that the number of Chinese Internet users is increasing at a dramatic pace — over 2100% in the last 12 years. With almost 1.4 Billion people, that means there is still a ton of room for growth, and this isn’t just free traffic.
ASOS has set its sights on launching in China and Russia within a year, as the online fashion group targets two of the biggest retail markets in the world. The internet retailer currently sells to China and Russia, but will develop local language websites in the next 12 months under plans for total sales to reach £1 billion by 2015.
China's e-commerce sector grew a massive 45% year-on-year in the second quarter, accounting for 12.5% of the country's GDP, according to new research. The study, from Analysys International indicates that total sales in China was 278.84 billion yuan ($44.5bn/ £36bn), with Alibaba Group's Taobao capturing a huge 76% of the market.
Google has pulled the plug on its music search and download services in China from next month after a 'disappointing' response from users. More than two years ago, Google effectively shut down its Chinese search engine, providing mainland users with a landing page that redirects to its uncensored site in Hong Kong.
Yahoo has sold back half of its stake in Chinese internet giant Alibaba for $7.6bn (£4.7bn), in a move that has fuelled speculation that the firm could use the cash to bid for a hot web property, such as Pinterest or Foursquare.
Microsoft is recruiting over 1,000 additional employees in China this year and boost research and development spending by 15% as the software giant looks to boost its mobile reach in the highly lucrative region. Microsoft is promoting its Windows 8 mobile operating system but came late to the market and trails Apple Iand Google, whose Android system is widely used in China. In China nearly 400 million people surf the Web using mobile phones and other devices.
Chinese internet marketing giant Baidu is stepping up its product portfolio with major launches in cloud computing and a suite of mobile internet browser tools. Baidu is now looking to markets beyond China and revenues beyond search, directly competing with European and North American mobile, search and hosting firms. Baidu has launched a mobile browser, with aims that 80% of China’s Android handsets will have downloaded Baidu Mobile Browser by the end of the year.
Vietnam has the highest proportion of online video viewers across the Asia Pacific region, but China dominates the market in terms of sheer numbers of viewers, according to new research. The study, from comScore, coincides with the introduction of its Video Matrix measurement service in Taiwan, Vietnam, Indonesia and the Philippines.
Chinese search engine Baidu has inked a deal with Edinburgh-based flight search company Skyscanner, posing a challenge to Google's advantage in the lucrative online travel sector. The move will give Baidu users flight information presented with results from Skyscanner’s database. The move comes after Skyscanner expanded its operations to Singapore and Russia.
China's most popular Web browser Qihoo has replaced Google with its own newly launched search engine as default choice. The firm said the move was prompted by a decline in Google's customer service declined since its exit from China in 2010. The new search engine, called so.360.cn, was launched last week. The service replaced Google as the default search engine on Qihoo 360's portal Hao.360.com, which will radically alter the existing structure of Chinese online search engine industry.
The latest mobile advertising forecast data suggests the big boom is yet to come, with the market trippling in side within the next 4 years, Yankee group are forecasting more than $11 billion being invested by brands just in mobile media space, before considering the investment to make websites compatible for mobile phones and tablets. After 10 years of hype, this mobile advertising forecast shows the tipping point is finally being reached. Here’s why…
In the Chinese internet market, the search engine Baidu dominates traffic generation to websites. This week it announced that four of its staff have been dismissed following corruption allegations that posts were deleted on its websites in exchange for personal payments. With three of the staff subsequently arrested by Chinese police, it shows the importance Baidu has achieved in the Chinese internet market.
Television is the only media that decreased in ad spend in the Asia-Pacific region. Cinema ad spend showed the most growth with a 27.1% increase from the previous year.
Chinese search giant Baidu has become embroiled in a bribing scandal, with four of its employees suspected of accepting payments to delete posts on the company’s forum. Baidu has already fired the four staff members involved - of which three have now been arrested. It has not been confirmed why the fourth member has avoided further action, nor what posts were deleted.
Google, Facebook and YouTube are the biggest sites in the world, followed by the likes of Baidu and qq in China, according to a new graphic looking at global web use. The map, depicting the size and relationships of the biggest 350,000 websites in the world, was created by Ruslan Enikeev. He measured 2 million links from 196 different countries to create the interactive graphic.
Baidu the Chinese search giant has posted net profits of 2.77bn yuan ($436m) for Q2, up from 1.63bn yuan in the same period last year. Revenues were up 60% and reached 5.46bn yuan ($858.8m).
China has crossed a tipping point in technology as China's mobile internet use has overtaken traditional PC internet access. With over 530m people connected by mobile, this is a reminder that the mobile web experience will be the first internet experience for many consumers in the world's largest internet market.
Apple has agreed to pay $60m (£38m) to Chinese firm Proview to settle a dispute involving rights to the "iPad" name, a court in China has said. Proview had claimed that it owned the rights to the iPad name in the Chinese market after registering it in 2000. However, Apple had insisted that it had acquired the worldwide rights for the name in 2009.
Apple is launching iTunes online store to Hong Kong, Taiwan and 10 other Asian countries, but the online video and music store is still yet to maake an appearance in China. The move continues Apple's push to sell music and video to more users in the company's fastest growing region.
2011 saw American publishers account for the highest percentage of online impressions. However, the chart shows that throughout 2011, the Asia-Pacific publishers in China and Japan progressed sigificantly ahead of their Northern European counterparts.
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The US accounts for nearly a quarter of all display ad impressions in the world, followed by China and Japan, according to new data revealed by Google. The research, from Google’s display ad properties, including DoubleClick for publishers, the DoubleClick ad exchange and the Google adsense network.
A staggering 1 in every 5 people online are from China, and there is still plenty of room for growth amongst its 1.3 billion plus citizens, according to new data. Online statistic portal Statista has assembled an infographic displaying key trends amongst Chinese citizens, as the country begins to match the US in terms of internet use.
Asia (excluding Japan) and BRIC nations (Brazil, Russia, India and China) have overtaken Europe and western markets on television viewing and video consumption via Internet or mobiles, according to a new report looking at online video use in Asia. The findings, from Nielsen’s global media consumption index also shows that globally, 14% of advertising expenditure goes towards digital.
Chinese online shopping giant Alibaba is partnering with community site Mogujie, offering shoppers a more social way to find and buy products online. The deal will see Alibaba’s eTao search engine offer a new social sharing ecommerce platform called eTao Faxian, which means “discover.”
Mark Zuckerberg has been spotted in Shanghai this week, sparking rumours that Facebook could be eyeing a return to the lucrative Chinese market after being blocked three years ago. Facebook now has at least 845 million users around the world, but has been banned in mainland China since 2009.
The vast majority of consumers in China and India trust brands that are responsible or sociable, according to new research. The study, from Havas Media, also indicates that only 20% of brands have a notable positive impact on consumer’s sense of wellbeing and quality of life. Of those polled, 95% and 85% said they trust companies with a responsible or social profile more than those without in China and India respectively.
Low-cost Android handsets will reach a penetration rate of 80% of total smartphones in Africa, India, and China by 2015, accoriding to new research from In-Stat. The low-cost Android smartphone segment is comprised primarily of smartphones released with Android 2.2 or 2.3, since these versions are a good blend of features with modest memory and processor usage.
Madhouse, China’s leading Mobile Marketing Company has launched in India, in partnership with global ad giant WPP. Madhouse offers brands mobile solutions across the spectrum of paid, owned and earned media on smart phones and tablets.
China is closing in on the 1 billion mobile connections mark, which it will likely surpass before the end of March, according to new research. The findings, from Wireless Intelligence report, indicates that China is poised to grow further as its huge population is now embracing mobile data services.
The number of internet users in China has surged past half a billion and online citizenship continues to grow fast, according to latest figures. The China Internet Network Information Center report also shows the use of social media sites – Twitter equivalents called weibo – has greatly expanded among the country's 513 million web users. The number of microbloggers expressing themselves in the relative privacy of cyberspace has exploded – quadrupling from 63 million in 2010 to just over 250 million in 2011, or half the entire internet population, the figures show.
India and China have the most active social media users, while web users in the US, Europe and Japan are less likely to post information on social networks, according to a new report. The global survey by Forrester Research, found that three out of four Chinese and Indian web users write blog posts or upload pictures and music. The online survey collected from 95,000 Internet users in 18 countries.
Over the next three years nearly half (48%) of all the world’s growth in ad expenditure will come from just ten developing markets, including China, Russia, and Indonesia, according to new research. The study, from ZenithOptimedia, predicts that the four BRIC markets alone (Brazil, Russia, India and China) are forecast to account for 33% of global growth.
Global marketing giant WPP has taken a minority stake in Leading Smart Holdings, the British Virgin Islands-based parent company of Moment Systems, a digital advertising measurement firm in China. The move marks WPP’s second investment in a Chinese digital firm this month.
Renren has bought online video sharing site 56.com for $80 million, as the Chinese social networking site looks to boost user engagement. Founded in 2005, Guangzhou-based 56.com is a video-sharing website where users can upload, view and share videos.
Taiwan ranked highest globally for blog engagement, with 85.5% of its online population visiting blogs, followed by Brazil (85.2%), South Korea (84.9%) and Turkey (81.9%).
Alibaba has launched a new search engine called eTao, as China's largest e-commerce company looks to take on Baidu in the search market. Alibaba has launched its search engine called eTao.com after a beta trial last year. Alibaba's eTao site has been designed primarily as a shopping search engine, allowing users to query for products and group-buying deals. But the site also allows users to search for general web pages as well. eTao's market share, however, is so small that research firms don't list it.
Zynga is to create a Chinese version of its CityVille game, despite its platform of choice, Facebook, being blocked in the territory. The game will be played via internet portal Tencent instead of Facebook, where most of its games are played, but which is blocked in China.
Zynga recently filed for a much anticipated IPO but has been criticized for being too dependent on Facebook, its primary distribution platform, which accounts for the overwhelming majority of the company’s users and revenues.
The number of websites in China almost halved last year, as increasing online censorship laws take their toll, according to new research. The report from the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS), a government think tank, found that there were 1.91 million websites at the end of last year, a 41% drop. The findings mark the first time that the number of websites in China has decreased, with some commentators linking the statistic to recent censorship laws coming into force.
Microsoft has struck a deal with Chinese search giant Baiduto offer its English-language search functions to Chinese users. Baidu has struggled to match Google's English search capabilities and is expected to introduce Microsoft Bing by the end of the year. However, the version that will have to adhere to the country's censorship rules. The agreement comes more than a year after Google pulled out of China, largely over disagreements about censorship, and ceded just under half its market share to Baidu.