Monthly Archives: September 2013

EXCLUSIF: Facebook et Twitter autorisés dans la zone spéciale de Shanghai?

Facebook et Twitter ont été interdits en Chine continentale depuis 2009. Les réseaux sociaux influencent la population et pourraient jouer un rôle important dans les mouvements politiques. Au cours des dernières années, le gouvernement de la Chine a été préoccupé par l’impact de ces nouveaux médias sur la stabilité sociale.

Les nouveaux médias comme Facebook et Twitter, mais aussi le site du journal américain New York Times sont considérés comme des sites politiquement sensibles par le gouvernement chinois.

Recemment, la responsable des opérations de Facebook Sheryl Sandberg a rencontré Cai Mingzhao, le responsable du State Council Information Office à Beijing.

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Les hauts dirigeants chinois, y compris le premier ministre Li Keqiang sont désireux d’utiliser les zones de libre-échange comme un terrain d’essai en matière de réformes économiques et financières importantes.

Selon South China Morning Post, le gouvernement de la Chine aurait pris la décision historique de lever l’interdiction d’accès à Internet à des sites américains au sein de la nouvelle zone de libre-échange de Shanghai. Les motifs de la décision seraient expliqués par la volonté de laisser les étrangers vivre, travailler et se sentir comme chez eux mais aussi d’attirer davantage d’investissements étrangers. A confirmer tant cette nouvelle serait un changement important.

La zone de libre-échange s’ouvrirait aussi aux offres étrangères de sociétés de télécommunications pour fournir des services Internet au sein de la nouvelle zone économique spéciale.

Pour rappel, fin août, le Conseil d’Etat chinois, a approuvé le lancement d’une zone de libre-échange à Shanghai, qui s’étend sur 28,78 kilomètres carrés à Pudong New Area de la ville, y compris la zone franche de Waigaoqiao, Yangshan, et la zone de l’aéroport international.

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EXCLUSIVE: Facebook & Twitter approved in China within Shanghai free-trade zone?

Facebook and Twitter have been banned in mainland China since 2009. Those American services influence people and could play important roles in political movements. In recent years, the government of China is concerned about the impact of new media on social stability.

New media like Facebook and Twitter but also US newspaper website of The New York Times are considered politically sensitive sites by the Chinese government.

Recently, Facebook chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg met Cai Mingzhao, the head of the State Council Information Office in Beijing.

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Top Chinese leaders including Premier Li Keqiang are keen to make the free-trade zones a key proving ground for significant financial and economic reforms.

According to South China Morning Post, the government of China would have made the landmark decision to lift a ban on Internet access to American websites within the Shanghai Free-trade Zone. The reasons of the move would be explained by the willingness to let foreigners live, work and feel like at home but also attract more foreign investments.

The free-trade zone would also welcome bids from foreign telecommunications companies for licenses to provide Internet services within the new special economic zone.

As a reminder, end of August, the Chinese State Council, approved the launch of the free-trade zone in Shanghai, which spans 28.78 square kilometers in the city’s Pudong New Area, including the Waigaoqiao duty-free zone, Yangshan deepwater port, and the international airport area.

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A Facebook China Team Coming Soon?

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Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook, was in Beijing yesterday. It is not the first time someone from Facebook is seen there since Mark Zuckerberg have been several times with his Chinese wife.

Facebook has been blocked in China since 2009. The change is the fact that Sheryl Sandberg met officially with Cai Mingzhao, the Director of SCIO, the regulator of Chinese Internet: see below a screenshot of the webpage.

Facebook in China would definitively change the industry of social media in the country. If Facebook enters the market, Renren, Qzone, WeChat, WeMeet would lose market share against Facebook. SinaWeibo shouldn’t be affected much.

The best interest of the Chinese administration is mainly the use of Facebook to advertise Chinese products and services all over the world while the best interest of Facebook is to get an easier access to Chinese users.

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The Social Media Strategy of Ritz / Carlton for China

As explained before, to succeed in China, a brand needs to go beyond the data and immerse itself in the culture in order to develop relevant marketing.

In the luxury world, the impression of high quality and dream is very important, so the chosen design should resonate in minds of Chinese.

The brand called Ritz-Carlton understood well they need a specific strategy for China. The firm, owner of 4 hotels in China, launched a new Chinese website  and a public account on Sina Weibo

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Chinese people have a high level of customer’s appreciation for History (traditions, History and heritage). The Ritz-Carlton brand took that into considerations with digital channels reflecting that tradition, while also demonstrating that the brand is speaking to the audience in a way that is culturally relevant.

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It seems the team who worked on the strategy knows China. For example, the blue color is usually associated with immortality and wisdom. This could explain the use of shade of blue for its richness (similar to the blue color found on Chinese porcelain). Ritz Carlon is doing good but should do better than that: they missed some important other elements for Chinese consumers.