automotive market China car china China Digital Marketing china market chinese consumer e-marketing Marketing China Marketing Research in China marketing to china Social Media China Technology

China’s Automotive Market – How Carmakers Compete Using Digital Marketing

China's Automotive Market - How Carmakers Compete Using Digital Marketing

 China’s Auto market turns into the most important on the earth

When it comes to market penetration, the U.S. has 910 automobiles per 1,000 individuals, whereas China solely has 171 automobiles per 1,000 individuals, so China continues to be removed from being a saturated market but.

Nevertheless, auto gross sales has slowed down this yr

Gross sales in China proceed to be suppressed because the second half of 2018 because the world’s second-largest financial system slows and negotiations with the U.S. for a trade-war answer proceed on.

The wholesale decline in January 2019, to 2.02 million models, accelerated from a 15.eight % stoop in December, in line with the China Affiliation of Vehicle Producers. For final yr as an entire, the drop was four.1 %, the primary lower because the early 1990s.

Aside from the commerce tensions, many market elements have stalled gross sales in a rustic that has traditionally been a substantial supply of progress for the business:

Used automotive market increasing: A decade in the past, China’s used-car market barely existed, however in the present day, the ratio of used automotive gross sales to new automotive gross sales is 1:2. Because the Chinese language market matures, used automobiles have gotten an necessary a part of the combination.

New automotive license plates restricted: Limiting new automotive license plates is a approach to management visitors jams and air air pollution. To date eight cities and one small province have carried out this coverage and extra cities are more likely to comply with.

New power automobiles (NEVs) prefered: Gross sales of latest power automobiles (battery electrical, plug-in hybrid and gasoline cell automobiles) jumped 62% to 1.26 million, with a share of four,5% of the full automotive market in 2018. Chinese language demand for electrical automobiles might ultimately turn out to be a pretty marketplace for overseas carmakers.

Experience-Sharing Apps rising: The rising reputation of transformative applied sciences like ride-sharing apps poses an incredible problem to automakers. China’s model of Uber – Didi Chuxing (DIDI) – is already a big energy with 550 million customers making 11 billion rides in 2018. Meaning a declining demand in automotive possession and thus automotive gross sales.

We’ve causes to consider that China’s auto market would bounce again later this yr

Though tariffs and commerce wars might disrupt China’s vehicle market, there are grounds for optimism.

The hopes are largely based mostly on a steadying financial system, authorities stimulus, the electrical and sport utility markets and plan to develop fashions particularly for home shoppers, whereas the posh teams goal to profit from the quickly rising wealth of the richest Chinese language shoppers.

Regardless that Beijing has delayed its plan to chop tax to stimulate purchases, its dedication to smaller initiatives such because the introduction of subsidies for rural residents to commerce of their previous automobiles is probably going to assist revenues.

Moreover, a reduce to value-added tax for the enterprise that may permit corporations to chop costs with out eroding their income can also be more likely to stimulate gross sales.

Lastly, China’s prime financial planning physique stated it will encourage giant cities to chill out licensing insurance policies for residents.

Learn additionally: Automotive goes digital in China



Relating to deciding which automotive to purchase, Chinese language shoppers rely predominantly on 4 elements: pals and colleagues, relations, producer web sites and social media.

Chinese language shoppers, generally, are significantly extra more likely to depend on the Web when deciding what and whether or not to purchase.

In 2011, 43% of Chinese language shoppers bought merchandise offline after wanting on-line for pricing, product and model info, in addition to for buyer critiques.

Chinese language shoppers’ prolific use of social media is especially essential

  • Greater than 90 % Chinese language shoppers use social media and microblogs (like Weibo) to study corporations’ services or products.
  • 60 % work together instantly with corporations on social media websites about their merchandise or customer support.
  • Two-thirds say that constructive or adverse feedback have some impression on their determination to purchase a given product.
  • 72 % Chinese language shoppers examine corporations’ services or products on social media websites no less than a number of occasions a month.
  • Almost 25 % publish their opinions about an organization’s services or products a number of occasions every week.
  • Two-thirds assume that an organization’s presence on social media websites will increase the probability that they may do enterprise with them.

In accordance with Accenture’s 2011 and 2012 International Shopper Analysis research

Digital advertising will quickly be the dominant technique for automakers trying to construct robust shopper relationships and finally promote extra automobiles. A greater interactive digital advertising functionality is “a should” for these within the auto business to stay aggressive and related in China’s technology-driven clients.

Construct a extra Design & Practical Web site 

A top quality web site is important for vehicle manufacturers. That is the place Chinese language clients do in depth analysis in your services to guage whether or not you’ll transfer on to their driving check part or be filtered out of their consideration record.

Virtually half of shoppers acquire details about automobiles from automotive web sites, since these web sites often have complete information about automotive manufacturers and fashions.

A (good) Web site have to be created retaining the Chinese language viewers in thoughts relatively than merely offering an adaptive model of your Western web site.

The content material must be written in native simplified Chinese language, hosted in China or Hongkong to make sure quick entry for native individuals.

Cellular-friendly is important contemplating that greater than 90% of Chinese language Web customers entry the Web by way of cellular units.

In addition to product and model info, think about including these content material and digital options to your web site:

  • simpler and clearer pricing to assist expedite the car-buying course of
  • information about vehicle applied sciences
  • examine further choices inside an automaker’s product line
  • extra integration with supplier websites and stock search features.
  • extra intuitive content material, custom-made to customers’ totally different preferences.
  • the power to talk on-line with a supplier.

Use social media to strengthen relationship and model loyalty

On social media, younger auto lovers (post-90s and youthful) have a robust willingness to share content material about automobiles with others. Half of the auto fanatics spend 5-15 minutes on each on-line publish (web site and social media) about automobiles.

Learn 10 strongest social media in China (up to date 2019)

Automakers can reap the benefits of social media for these functions:

  • Model consciousness: customers search for manufacturers on social media to study extra about them by way of their official accounts in addition to evaluations, feedback, mentions that manufacturers acquire from the overall viewers. The interactive parts of social media reminiscent of like/remark/share… would convey your model far to succeed in a much bigger viewers and far past your official account.
  • Interact with clients: excite followers with firm information, interactive actions or promotion; reply to them, speak to them and nurture them into future consumers
  • Customer support: Chinese language shoppers are likely to contact manufacturers by way of their social media like Wechat slightly than assembly offline or calling. This is a vital channel to reply all considerations and questions in addition to clear up issues that clients have
  • E-reputation: As talked about, Chinese language shoppers take a look at you on social media to verify different individuals’s experiences together with your manufacturers. Chinese language shoppers are likely to share their opinions a few product/ service to their community on social media. Subsequently, it’s vital to manage, handle and affect these conversations. Scandals unfold like virus on social media in China. You must control your e-reputation to have actions on time.

KOLs will increase your gross sales

Greater than 70% of auto shoppers comply with at the least three KOLs, their buying behaviors are extremely influenced by KOLs’ opinions and expertise.

You correctly have heard a few style blogger promoting 100 automobiles on Wechat in simply 5 minutes.

The automobiles bought have been 100 restricted version vibrant turquoise MINI Coopers. Every automotive having the advisable gross sales worth of 285,000 RMB ($42,215). They have been bought by way of the WeChat account of mega fashionable trend blogger Becky Li (黎贝卡).

Chinese language shoppers belief their favourite Web KOLs. These KOLs have been doing a superb job in offering helpful info, in-depth evaluate and considerate recommendation to their followers. Subsequently, their opinions affect considerably the shopping for selections of their followers. That is true for the car business.

The above profitable marketing campaign doesn’t solely showcase the in depth energy of influencer advertising in China for automobiles but in addition show the feasibility of conducting such flash-sale campaigns on mobile-commerce for top valued merchandise like automobiles.

Optimize your search engine marketing for Baidu to draw high quality visitors

For those who ignore Baidu, you’d miss greater than 16 % of focused clients.

Baidu is China’s strongest search engine, with a dominant market share of over 80%.

To advertise a website on Baidu, there are a couple of needed factors to comply with:

  • A regionally hosted area (.cn) results in a better rating on the Baidu search outcomes
  • Thorough key phrase analysis is completely essential
  • The web page description (meta-tag) performs an essential position
  • Properly-written and keyword-optimized content material is your 90% of search engine marketing success
  • Backlinks results in a better rating

Leverage e-commerce and digital promoting

E-commerce, has weakened the normal promoting means of auto market in China. Whereas shoppers elsewhere are nonetheless visiting brick-and-mortar outlets to purchase automobiles, buyers on the earth’s largest auto market – the place 28 million automobiles have been bought final yr – are more and more doing it on-line, prompting manufacturers to open digital showrooms, associate with e-commerce websites to advertise new fashions and re-examine their funding within the conventional dealership Enterprise mannequin.

In 2016, 1 million automobiles value a whopping $15 billion have been bought on-line in China, based on consultancy Frost & Sullivan. On Singles Day, an annual purchasing gala created by e-commerce big Alibaba, 100,000 automobiles have been bought on its Taobao and Tmall buying platforms.

Again in 2010, Mercedes-Benz bought 205 Sensible fashions in about three.5 hours on Taobao. In Might 2011, Lamborghini selected to exhibit a number of fashions on Tmall to supply netizens the last word thrill to buy (they might ebook, however there have been no transactions on-line). Mercedes-Benz renewed the expertise in February 2012 on Jingdong (JD): 300 Sensible automobiles have been bought in 89 minutes whereas 17,000 new customers added the mannequin to their watch record. They did it once more in January 2013, this time on Weibo, promoting 666 models inside 9 hours.

Or take the case of Ford’s superb omnichannel advertising marketing campaign. Ford determined to implement a partnership with Alibaba: they launched the Tremendous Check-Drive Middle in Guangzhou to permit individuals to purchase a automotive from a staff-less machine in beneath 10 minutes.

Clients simply need to go to the Tmall app and select the mannequin they need to test-drive by way of the web catalog. To register, clients should take an image of their face and as soon as within the retailer, as soon as the client exhibits their face to facial recognition, the automotive is chosen on-line arrives from the multistory construction. Then, the client can check the automotive for a number of days (three days max) and order it on-line.

Be artistic, customer-centric and technology-minded to convey extraordinary experiences to your clients.

Reinforce your experience in automobility on Zhihu

Zhihu is a Chinese language question-and-answer platform just like Quora. Its motto is “Share your information, experiences, and ideas with the world.”

As of June 2018, it had 180 million registered customers and 35 million month-to-month lively customers.

Along with its primary question-and-answer function, Zhihu has additionally developed different features. Customers can write articles, take part in discussions, learn e-magazines, or give on-line shows about particular subjects whereas interacting with an viewers in real-time.

Most manufacturers begin advertising on Zhihu utilizing its primary question-and-answer perform.

  • search for and reply questions associated to automobiles business. Answering questions on Zhihu lets you showcase your experience and join with each business specialists and common customers.
  • Encourage customers to ask questions or submit questions your self. This lets you get high-quality user-generated content material, enhance your consumer engagement and amplify your affect on social media

German vehicle producer Audi is an effective instance of the right way to use the location. In China, Audi was referred to as “The Headlight Firm (灯厂)” by Chinese language shoppers as a result of it’s most well-known for its headlights. So, quickly after creating their group account on Zhihu, Audi answered the query Why is Audi referred to as “The Headlight Firm”? (为什么说奥迪是灯厂?)

Of their reply, Audi delved into the historical past of vehicle lighting and the way its headlights have advanced because the 1990s, once they first began to make use of xenon lights of their automobiles. Technical rules and the efficiency of every sort of sunshine have been additionally defined. The reply received greater than 5,400 likes (“upvotes” in Quora) and almost 600 feedback.






The core DNA of GMA is bringing Outcomes to our shoppers. We work to optimise conversion. maximize Publicity, develop Leads/gross sales and develop on-line Branding


We’ve an experience to Market Enterprise in China, know greatest Channels, greatest influencers and perceive the communication amongst new Chinese language Center Class.


As a pure Digital Participant, we carry out with Digital Advertising Marketing campaign and have the Digital Philosophy to Do, study, Adapt and Optimize. We consider that good Outcomes arrive by analyze and non cease Optimize.


We all know that China is a troublesome Marketplace for new Manufacturers and we’re obsessive about delivering Outcomes that convey ROI to our shoppers.

We offer value Efficient Answer to Maximize Outcomes. It’s once we generate income that our shoppers generate profits.


We have now a partnership strategy with our shoppers. We Information them, give suggestions about Marketing campaign, and wish to work in sensible partnership.







About the author