618 is the second-largest and most important shopping festival in China, while Double 11 is the largest shopping festival. From June 1st to June 18th every year, China's e-commerce landscape is full of large-scale promotions and discounts on the hottest products of the moment, so it is an important large node of the year for major brands. This year, Douyin kicked off as early as April 26, and Kuaishou also started to build momentum for 618 on 520. Even JD.com, Pinduoduo and Taobao officially launched the 618 promotion on May 23 and 26 respectively. According to "618 E-commerce Social Media Play Panorama Early Insights (2022)" (published by Weiboyi), the following summarizes the relevant strategic content of brands on social media platforms during the 618 periods for reference.
Category and content delivery
First of all, beauty cosmetics and daily chemicals occupy the first place in the category, followed by IT Internet. Others include the maternal and child care categories that tend to use the Xiaohongshu + Weibo + Douyin launch strategy like beauty cosmetics; There are also food and beverage and digital home appliance categories that tend to be placed on Weibo + Douyin + Bilibili for launch strategy. Contents delivery of related categories:-
Beauty cosmetics, daily chemicals products, maternal and child care: focus on vertical content, mainly based on users' specific needs and hobbies, etc.
Digital appliances: Demonstrate multiple-use effects of products to reach consumers
Food and beverage: Use daily life content to create the hottest and most popular products through Douyin and Xiaohongshu
Social media platform marketing and gameplay
The trend of each platform is different, thus choosing a suitable platform for a category will have different results, while the selection of influencers will also be different. For example, Xiaohongshu skews toward mid-tier and low-tier influencers, Weibo has a trend of choosing a top tier influencers, while Douyin and Bilibili are mid-tier influencers.
Platform role: First station for product longing, uses the scene content to publish notes to create word of mouth, let mid-tier influencers and KOC share real content, release product selling points and endorse the brand, which is conducive to the brand’s completion of longing and purchase
Marketing / Strategy: Complete the layout of cooperation notes in the node ahead of time, use the search popularity to seize the traffic opportunity, and continue to publish notes to maintain the traffic and popularity, especially the peak reading time of different categories of notes is different. For example, the beauty category highly follows the trend of e-commerce nodes, while home decoration traffic peaks during 618 big promotions.
Platform role: Grow products longing consumers precisely through watching the content videos of popular products, increase the brand voice, and increase traffic through live broadcasts during the node period and convert into sales. The most common way of live broadcast e-commerce is through influencers, product promotion capacity is higher compared with the ability of self-broadcasting of merchants, and sales volume is also very impressive.
Marketing / Strategy: The top three core categories in 2021 include pre-sale and the official period are formal apparel, lingerie, food and beverages, and household items. Apparel and lingerie categories are promoted via top, mid, and low-tier influencers and KOC, the warm-up period and the precipitation period focus on the mid and low-tier influencers and KOC, and the bursting period focuses on the release of the market voice through top-tier influencers. The beauty category tends to choose a large number of KOC amateurs for word-of-mouth brand building; the daily necessities category adopts a combination strategy of low-tier influencers and KOCs.
Platform role: Use the uploader of high-quality delivery content to reach target consumer groups at multiple points, and influence user decision-making by extending the period of high-quality products promotion content, displaying product links in multiple forms and providing deep-link to complete users of product planting and purchase cycle.
Marketing / Strategy: Users have high spending power, thus the target categories are suitable for high-unit price commodities such as 3C digital and automotive categories. The mid and low-tier uploader is mainly the launch trend of e-commerce nodes at B site because the activity at B site is relatively high and the penetration of circle is strong, and the cost of brand launch is low too.
Platform role: The first station of the product announcement and distribution through marketing and entertainment top influencers will arouse Weibo’s attention to hot searches, attract the attention of users in the brand/product core circle, and later drive the sales conversion of big promotion nodes.
Marketing / Strategy: Use celebrities + endorsements + topics + influencers to collaborate in multiple ways, such as KOL and KOC publishing and sharing joint gift boxes; celebrity/top influencer emotional story content or creative TVC publicity and promotion core selling points to catch consumers’ attention, heating traffic to increase the brand discussion.
Platform Role: The discussion space is opened with professional Q&A, and good things are recommended to create a heated discussion top list to promote conversion. Zhihu has set up 618 product longing groups, covering different topic owners by providing professional content support for different categories of brands.
Marketing / Strategy: “618 Zhihu Good Things List” provides the brand with the opportunity to enhance the exposure of “hot selling products”, by displaying the good products in the content topic discussion, thus the discussion of brands products has sustainable exposure, and afterwards through “Zhihu Good Things Promotion Contest”, it will set off an upsurge of interaction, use multiple traffic resources to reach a wide range of influencer who promote products and drive the atmosphere of Zhihu for the promotion of the product.
Marketing strategy recommendation
Preparation period: From May 10th to the end of May, as the pre-sale period, brands can conduct a wide range of pre-heating and product previews during this period, it is recommended that brands choose multiple platforms to increase the amount of product longing, take the lead in harvesting the first wave of users’ favour.
Sprint period: From the beginning of June to June 13, during the period of making a voice, the brand can choose a combination of product selling points or a special selection of pan entertainment platforms for combination, focusing on the continuous fermentation of voice.
Explosion period: From June 14th pre-sale period to June 20th, brands can integrate the early penetration effect for rapid transformation, and focus on the platform’s in-station operation, at the same time, it efficiently diverts traffic through social media platforms and joint e-commerce platforms.
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