The Social Edition is our weekly series which deep dives into luxury initiatives in China’s social media landscape. Every week, we highlight brand campaigns distributed on Chinese digital platforms — WeChat, Weibo, Tmall, Douyin, and beyond.
Our coverage spotlights global luxury brands, global beauty brands, and local Chinese brands. The latter gives insight into some of China’s most successful campaigns, which often come from local players, and are outside of the beauty and fashion space.
In this week’s roundup, we look at three campaigns, including Louis Vuitton’s brand campaign reimagining travel origins, Chanel’s collaboration with China First International Film Festival, and the launch of JNBY’s pop-up exhibition.
Louis Vuitton Reinvents Its Travel Origins Amid Pandemic Restrictions
BRAND Louis Vuitton
PLATFORMS WeChat, Weibo
MEDIUM Image, Outdoor
Louis Vuitton revealed its new brand campaign, which it describes as a perennial voyage transcending the times and an “emotional journey across landscapes and borders.” Despite little product exposure, the campaign defines travel as a process of self-discovery, a personal journey that goes beyond discovering physical destinations. The campaign’s dreamlike setting was photographed by Viviane Sassen in Iceland to communicate the house’s core values of imagery, dreams, escapism, and continued optimism.
The campaign was launched via Louis Vuitton’s official social channels on WeChat and Weibo and outdoor billboards in Xintiandi, Shanghai. Aside from positive comments on the campaign’s Weibo post, the physical billboards bearing Iceland’s ethereal landscapes have become popular “daka” destinations (China’s version of Instagrammable spots) for local fashionistas, driving organic traffic on Little Red Book.
Louis Vuitton, which built its house legacy on travel, seems to have found alternative ways to communicate these values in light of global travel restrictions. The campaign’s imagery shows the house’s extensive social awareness — from inclusivity to optimism — and allows flexible interpretations by audiences in varying sociocultural contexts. Compared to campaigns leveraging marketing tactics such as idol collaborations, this approach maintains brand equity and consolidates its image among its loyal customers amid a unique situation.
Chanel + China Film Festival Collab Buoys Both Brands
MEDIUM Image, Short-film, Offline panel
FEATURED TALENTS Zhou Xun (6M Weibo Followers) | Jing Boran (24M)
On the 15th anniversary of the FIRST International Film Festival, Chanel collaborated with the event to launch a curated exhibition named “First Frame.” The collaboration spotlights a diverse range of female images in the early works of young, Chinese-speaking filmmakers while supporting women-themed narratives in film.
The initiative also features a 140-second film named “A Frame Of Her,” which was translated by the Chanel brand ambassador Zhou Xun and released on the Festival’s Weibo account on May 28. Each scene of the film references female characters presented at the Festival over the past 14 years.
This partnership has driven substantial social traffic for Chanel and the festival, thanks to a well-curated content presentation and extensive celebrity endorsements at the press conference. The campaign hashtag #FirstFrame has garnered over 80 million views within a week — a substantial number for a non-commercial campaign. Plus, the short film “A Frame Of Her” has received over 2.7 million views on the festival’s Weibo account. In addition to positive netizen reactions, media outlet posts allowed the collaboration to gain a wider audience.
Chanel’s Weibo account has gained a huge organic audience, thanks to the collaboration. As compared to other product-driven social content, the campaign posts received up to 700 total comments. According to the Weibo brand topic list, Chanel ranked second-highest, with 730 million reads and a discussion volume of 730,000 as of June 3. This approach successfully fueled the house’s social exposure but also consolidated the brand’s image around art and film.
Local Fashion Brand JNBY Wins Young China With Artsy Edge
PLATFORMS Weibo, WeChat, Douyin, Little Red Book
MEDIUM Image, Short-Video, Offline Pop-up Exhibition, Livestream
FEATURED TALENTS Guo Caijie (31M Weibo Followers) | Ju Xiaowen (3M)
Chinese designer brand JNBY launched a pop-up exhibition named “Symbiosis” at Lafayette Art Design Center in Shanghai and Wanda Mall in Harbin from May 29 to June 6. The show explores the theme of “symbiosis” and is rooted in Mexican culture via five different chapters. The installation communicates the core value of JNBY, which stands for “Just Naturally Be Yourself,” through artistic light displays. The opening event on May 28 attracted over 100 participants, including celebrities, KOLs, and media, and was livestreamed via the brand’s WeChat Mini Program.
Netizens have shown a strong interest in immersive art exhibitions, thanks to celebrity endorsements of artistic narratives. The campaign hashtag #JNBYSymbiosis has garnered over 10 million views in five days — traffic that has largely been driven by supermodel Ju Xiaowen’s social posts. Meanwhile, actress Guo Caijie’s attendance at the opening event in Harbin attracted healthy offline and online traffic for the exhibition. The 15-second campaign video that features Guo has received 105,000 views on Weibo thus far.
As a fashion company dedicated to contemporary art, JNBY Group has put substantial efforts into art, design, and architecture initiatives through extensive collaborations with creative talents. Compared to sales-driven marketing campaigns, its exhibition is more about brand communication and consolidating JNBY’s cultural integrity. However, the balance between maintaining a niche brand image and expanding market share is always a challenge for designer brands.