As Chinese multinational technology conglomerates Tencent and Alibaba have backed the Chinese social media and e-commerce platform ‘RED’ (also known as ‘Xiaohongshu’ or ‘Little Red Book’) to seek US$6 billion valuations, marketers should consider more partnerships on this dominating social media platform, in order to win the hearts and minds of Chinese consumers. Research shows that RED had attracted over 300 million registered users by the end of 2020, with monthly active users at over 100 million. Crucially, 80%-90% are females with disposable income. Initially designed for sharing reviews and tips on beauty and fashion products, users are now sharing about their daily lives, travel destinations and lifestyle as well. How can brands partner effectively with the platform? Here are some top tips that can feed in to integrated PR strategies and social media campaigns.
What differentiates RED?
The unique communication model of RED consists of two sectors – user-generated content (UGC) and community marketing. The UGC is the fundamental element on which RED relies. Based on trusted user-generated content, brands or even influencers obtain word-of-mouth advertising (if the content is authentic). When the UGC accumulates to a certain amount, it engages more audiences to form a community, and the community then generates more UGC. The closed-loop nature of the platform enables brands to effectively reach audiences interested in specific areas, such as makeup, skincare, fashion, tourism and even interior design.
Content is King
The high-quality and worth-collecting (saving it under a bookmark for future reference) content leads marketing trends. RED was the first social media platform to trend #ootd (outfit of the day) in China, engaging massive numbers of females. Knowing that millennials and Gen Z’ers like taking selfies reflected in a mirror, brands, especially fashion brands, extended the topic to ‘Instructions on mirror selfies’ to drive valuable offline traffic under the hashtag.
Trends on RED to consider in 2021
Wellness and healthy lifestyle trends such as #Sugarless, #CookingatHome, and #RechargingTrips are on the rise, according to an official report released by RED. More and more post-90’s and post-95’s (RED’s foremost users) are paying attention to health-related topics. Other trends such as #Guochao (the fashion style inspired by traditional Chinses garments, accessories and culture) is also attracting the attention of younger generation. For more trends analysis, please click here.
To speak to Sinclair about incorporating RED, or other Social Media platforms such as WeChat and Douyin in to your consumer PR strategy, please get in touch here. Additionally, you can download and read our Insights Report “Social Media Playbook for Brands in China” here.