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Micro blogs 'the next big thing'

[ 2010-12-03 13:12]     字号 [] [] []  
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Micro blogs are set to become the next battlefield in China's online advertising market as the practice becomes more popular among Chinese netizens.

Micro-blogging was still at a nascent stage in China last year, but user numbers are expected to exceed 100 million next year as it is quickly becoming the new marketing tool for multinational companies, such as Nokia, Dell and Lenovo, to promote their brands and products, industry sources say.

"Micro blogs provide a new tool for us to interact with our potential consumers here in China," says Yang Weidong, head of marketing for Nokia in China.

Yang says that because Chinese users are more accepting of this new form of communication compared with Internet users in other countries, the Finnish cell phone maker will increase its investment in marketing through Chinese micro blog services in the following years.

In October, Nokia launched news briefings that were held completely on social networking websites, mainly in micro-blogging services. Micro-bloggers could wear a 3D eyepiece to watch Nokia's online 3D promotion video and interact with the company through its micro blog on Sina Weibo, China's largest micro-blogging website.

According to Yang, at least 400,000 users attended this micro-blogging event and more than 1,000 Nokia N8 handsets were booked after the event, which was considered a "very good" experiment for using micro blogs to promote the brand and its products.

Marketing on micro-blogging services is not unique to Nokia. US-based PC maker Dell has also started using micro blogs for marketing purposes in China.

The computer company reportedly used the US micro-blogging website Twitter, which resulted in millions of dollars of sales in the United States. Early this year, Dell opened its Chinese micro blog on Sina Weibo.

Since then, the company has launched several online campaigns to promote its products online, which received "hundreds of thousands" of visits and responses from Chinese micro-bloggers.

According to figures from domestic research firm Analysys International, China's micro-bloggers reached 8 million last year, accounting for a tiny proportion of the country's 420 million Internet users.

However, by last month, the number of micro-blogging users had surpassed 75 million. The Beijing-based research firm forecast that the number of China's micro-bloggers will reach 145 million by the end of next year.


(中国日报网英语点津 Helen 编辑)

Micro blogs 'the next big thing'

About the broadcaster:

Micro blogs 'the next big thing'

Nelly Min is an editor at China Daily with more than 10 years of experience as a newspaper editor and photographer. She has worked at major newspapers in the U.S., including the Los Angeles Times and the Detroit Free Press. She is also fluent in Korean.