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Nokia, Pepsi, and Coach Go Social for Chinese New Year

  |  February 6, 2012   |  Comments

Brands strive to strike an emotional chord in Mainland China with campaigns taking place on social networks.

First published on ClickZ Asia.

The Chinese New Year celebration is a 15-day affair that runs from Jan. 23 to Feb. 6, with today marking the beginning of the dragon year.

During the celebration, international brands such as Nokia, Coach, and Pepsi rolled out campaigns hoping to strike an emotional chord with the Chinese population in Mainland China.

Here are highlights of three case studies:

Nokia’s “Go Home” QQ Train

Tapping the insight of the importance for the Chinese to return home to celebrate the Lunar New Year festival, Nokia collaborated with China’s 300 million user micro blog platform QQ to create a virtual train that could carry people’s wishes and homesickness during this period.

Nokia’s goal: reinforce its brand preference among female mobile users who are likely to own a local branded phone or win over first-time phone owners. The brand is aiming to regain its number one position in the mid to lower end phone segment.

To achieve its goal, Nokia co-branded with QQ’s entire brand platform from its website, instant messaging service, micro-blog, and video channel.

Media agency Carat China secured discount for ads on QQ’s video channel to generate more clicks. Print and outdoor ads also featured keywords that drove users to QQ to create a virtual coach featuring profile shots of their friends that they could use to send wishes.


As a result, close to four million people participated in the campaign and created more than 662,000 virtual coaches that reached out to over 60 million other QQ users. As of end of January, more than 4.3 million video views were recorded and 600,000 micro blog topics were also generated. With two million page views, Carat hit a high key performance indicator (KPI) at 80 percent, including more than 1.7 million unique views. The campaign ends tomorrow.

100 Million Views for Pepsi’s “Bring Happiness Home” Mini-Movie

Pepsi has also picked on the significant ritual during Spring festival where 1.3 billion Chinese people go home to reunite with their parents, families, and friends. However, the brand took it a step further based on a study that revealed 70 percent of Chinese youths no longer want to go home.

Leveraging famous Chinese celebrities and award winning director Zhang Guoli, Pepsi created a 10-minute mini-movie titled “Bring Happiness Home” highlighting its leading brands Pepsi Cola, Lay’s, and Tropicana.

The story centers around a Chinese family and how the three Pepsi company brands (each representing a story in itself that forms a bigger story) brought all its family members together during the holidays.

The mini-movie also reinforced the concept of happiness through the Mandarin character “le”, meaning happiness featured in all three of its Pepsi brand names.

Two weeks since the mini-movie was released, Pepsi reported that it became China’s top online video with more than 100 million views.

Coach Activates Sina Weibo for Red Envelope Campaign

To grow its fan base, luxury fashion brand Coach encouraged users to write their own Chinese New Year message or choose from 12 versions of traditional greetings to send to friends displayed against an animated background of swirling red envelopes from its China site.

Once completed, the user can then share their messages with three friends on Sina Weibo or via email. Greetings sent from the microblog would appear as a closed red envelope that direct users back to the Coach website to view them.

Additionally, a gallery on the site features sent messages where users can decide to re-share greetings they like from others. To sweeten the deal, five participants from the campaign were to be given RMB700 vouchers.

Mia Sun, digital director of Coach China, said the “Red Envelope” campaign was designed to facilitate the messages their fans share with friends and family during the Chinese New Year season.

“Being a part of their celebration and well wishing is important to us as a brand, both in the offline and online space,” she added.

TBWA/Tequila Hong Kong and Shanghai were instrumental for creating this initiative. However, they did not provide results after the campaign was launched.

Coach’s Sina Weibo page has more than 317,093 fans.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Adaline Lau

Adaline Lau, ClickZ Asia editor, oversees day-to-day editorial operations covering digital marketing from search to social media, mobile to analytics in the region. Before ClickZ, she was senior reporter at Marketing Magazine and has worked as a journalist for The Singapore Marketer and Asia Pacific Broadcasting. Connect with her @adalinelau or Google+.

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