China’s fertile digital land has witnessed the innovation and growth of many social platforms, from WeChat to Douyin to RED, also known as Xiaohongshu or Little Red Book. Started as an online sharing community mainly focused on beauty and cosmetics, the brand, in the midst of their high-speed growth, is expanding to fashion, food, traveling, maternity, lifestyle and even adding a male category. Recently, we see an increasing number of celebrities and KOLs joining RED to share their lives and point out their favorites, which makes it a promising platform for brands to build their presence.
At the moment of writing, RED has over 90 million users and many post-90s and millennials are using it on daily basis. Let’s take a deeper look at RED using our 4 Facets of Brand Positioning and see how this unique ‘red-hot’ platform tends to create the best lives for its users.
Truth – Shareability and Accessibility
The high-quality UGC (user generated content) on RED is what users are fond of. You are encouraged to share recommendations based on your own experience. Unlike other social platforms, content on RED is more informative and detailed, making it more real, authentic and useful for the audience. More surprisingly, you rarely see fake users or “zombie followers” on the platform and the quality of conversations and engagement driven by posts are much higher, rather than only a “good”, “I like it”. Instead, users will ask more detailed questions regarding the products in order to explore if these products are a fit for them. On the other hand, the shareability of the platform also satisfies the publishers who are eager to share things to get attention and be praised by others.
Lately, more and more celebrities are joining RED to recommend their cosmetics, outfits while displaying their lifestyles. The platform makes these celebrities accessible for regular people. As within RED, they are no longer remote stars far away from our normal life but real people who are using the same products with us.
Last but certainly not the least, RED provides the convenience to buy the products directly within its own online store. When you desire a product which you just saw recommended by others, just click the tag on the post and buy it immediately without going to another e-commerce platform!
Vision – Create the World’s Best Lifestyles at Your Fingertips
Ultimately, RED, or Little Red Book aims to shape itself to a “book” where everyone can write and read the world’s best lifestyles at their fingertips. Users of RED are not only the beneficial owners but also the broadcasters who bring all good lifestyles and products from all over the world.
Occasion – Seeding, Growing, Weeding
If you are familiar with RED, you have encountered the words 种草(seeding), 长草(growing) and 拔草(weeding), which best describe the process of how people interact with this platform.
- 种草(Seeding): A person is “seeding” when he/ she recommends and shares a fantastic product, which makes you fall in love with it in an instance. You feel – “I like it”.
- 长草(Growing): Of course, making a purchase decision depending only on 1 post might not be enough. Thus, you continue to read related feeds under that certain post to explore others’ comments. Sometimes you will find that the product may not be the best fit for you, while sometimes your desire of having the product will gradually “grow” because of its high reputation, and finally, you tell yourself – “I want it”.
- 拔草(Weeding): After the time of “growing”, you eventually buy the product on RED, which is coined “weeding”. Maybe the result is not as good as your expectation, or maybe it is, at least you have “weeded” the excitement for this product. If you are satisfied with the product, you can also take action to become a “seeder” by sharing your experience of the product on RED yourself!
Personality – A Lifestyle Disseminator
RED is a disseminator who brings the world’s best lifestyles to you as well as making your great life seen by the world. She is trendy with the most “in” and hottest information about 360-degree life, and understands your needs and interests thoroughly.
If I need to introduce RED to western people who totally have no understanding about it, I would say it is a platform that combines Pinterest (collection boards), Instagram (UGC with great images and videos) and Amazon (e-commerce). It provides a place mainly for the young generations to give and take the best lifestyles in the world.
With its unique and consistent brand positioning, it is not surprised that RED has grown so drastically and become the most promising marketing platform for brands. The transfer of the main focus on e-commerce towards the social sharing community has been proven a successful one. More interestedly, with the majority of users being female, RED currently added a new category tab “Men’s outfit”, indicating that it is looking forward to going beyond the limitation of female’s beauty and fashion and reaching to more diverse lifestyles.
However, being a fairly even playground right now, the increasing number of celebrities on RED will no doubt break the rule and make it difficult for normal users to grow followers and get attention, which will hurt their passions of sharing great goods, thereby losing its brand edge. Will RED go the same way as any other Chinese social platform? We certainly hope not.