Advertising online is now the best way to promote you product and service in China.

Baidu

Baidu is very similar to Google and has copied many of its functions. Like Google with Adwords, Baidu has something similar called “推广 – Tuiguang” which literally translate to “Push Wide (To Promote)”, and they’re very similar in how they operate for advertisers. Baidu’s ads and bidding methods are just like Google as well.  However, there are some differences to be said for Baidu.

When managing keywords in Adwords for Google, you’ll have a choice of Broad Match, Modify Broad Match, Phase Match, and Exact Match. Tuiguang, however, doesn’t have Modify Broad Match. They have instead a Phrase Synonym Match, which is due to the fact that there are a lot of Synonyms in Chinese compared to that of English.

Tuiguang is a lot more regimented than Adwords. Tuiguang requires you to have a business license, proof of ownership of your website, a minimum of $7,200 USD, and it takes about 45 days to process the account. However, with Baidu being so popular in China it is definitely a great bet on advertising to a large market in China.

Sogou

Taking the second spot in a search engine is Sogou. The one key difference between Sogou and Baidu is that Sogou has partnerships with a plethora of social media companies in China like WeChat to allow users on Sogou to be able to search for contents from these social media platforms. Being a second-tier search engine, the cost of pay-per-click is relatively lower. With social media as a platform, there is a great chance to target niche markets and customers.

Qihoo 360

Qihoo 360 expanded into the search business (so.com) in 2016 and currently owns about 10.52% of the market. Qihoo 360’s biggest accomplishment is that owns the second most popular Browser in China right after Internet Explorer by Microsoft. Like Soqou there is low traffic but also a low price-per-click system in place.

WeChat

As a foreign business in China doing just about anything is difficult, but operating on Wechat is even trickier.  However, Wechat is used by 750 million users with users chatting and socializing for over 90 minutes a day.

In order for you to do paid advertisement on WeChat, you must have at least one verified the official account, this can be subscription or service. As well as this, another stumbling block is the huge cost of advertising on the platform.

Sina Weibo

Considered to be the Twitter of China, Weibo is owned and operated by 2 different companies. Unlike Twitter, the term “Weibo” literally translates to “micro-blogging” and is not owned by any particular company. The type of weibo that most Chinese people refer to is actually Sina Weibo, as opposed to the less popular Tencent Weibo

Out of all the online platforms in China, Sina Weibo is actually the easiest to obtain a business account for foreign businesses. You simply register with them and pay 1,000 USD. The ad platform itself is called FenSi Tong. You can target your audience by age, locations, interest, gender, and even keywords.

Despite falling behind Wechat’s dominance, people on Weibo are looking for information and are not just chatting. Thus they hold their gaze on the screen longer, as opposed to flicking through moments (think facebook wall). Thus advertising can be more effective.

Toutiao

Toutiao wouldn’t be known by many foreigners in and out of China, but it translates to ‘headlines’ and is used as a news source for Chinese netizens. However, it is not simply a news-based platform. It uses complex algorithms to provide personalized news. Despite being in its infancy compared to other platforms mentioned beforehand, Toutiao has a robust ad distribution system. It has 11 different ad types that we’ve seen so far and 2 very unique ways of bidding. You can either pay for an entire 24-hour display to everyone or a personalized delivery that is similar to CPM. 

Youku & Tudou

Both Youku and Tudou are online video streaming sites, very much like Youtube. The two companies merged but you still have to advertise separately through each one. Being a video-based platform, the ads are primarily video based on banner ads also placed. However, unlike Youtube, Youku Tudou only gives the option to pay for impressions, thus making it best for brand based adverts. Thus, if you have the budget and a huge brand it’s a great resource. However, a small business who want a more direct marketing strategy would be best elsewhere.

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