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 new brand ambassadors, Tmall Global’s skateboarding program, and First Aid Beauty’s partnership with “Sisters Who Make Waves” star Cyndi Wang.
Louis Vuitton Names Chinese Boy Band TNT as Brand Ambassadors
BRAND Louis Vuitton
PLATFORMS WeChat, Weibo, Xiaohongshu, Kuaishou, Douyin
MEDIUM Image, Short-video, Livestream
FEATURED TALENTS Seven members in Teens in Times (120M Weibo followers in total)
Louis Vuitton announced Chinese boy idol group TNT (also known as Teens in Times) as brand ambassadors on June 22, and released their campaign video as a warm up for the upcoming Spring 2023 men’s show – a turning point for the house since the death of artistic director Virgil Abloh. The newly appointed brand faces, along with Chinese snowboarder and Olympic champion Su Yiming, sent out virtual invitations to the show’s livestream, which went live on June 23.
Debuting in 2019, the group includes seven team members who are between 16 and 20 years old, and each of them has a social following between 14 million and 20 million on Weibo. Their huge fan bases drove enormous social traffic for the partnership, garnering over 2.7 million views for the campaign video. The livestream of Louis Vuitton’s Spring 2023 men’s show reached 52 million views on Weibo within one day.
Louis Vuitton has been looking for its next men’s face in China since scandal erupted around its previous brand ambassador Kris Wu last year. The house started to collaborate with TNT in November 2021 when the LV& exhibition was unveiled in Shenzhen, meaning that it has put the partnership in consideration for more than half a year. And now, with the official announcement, Louis Vuitton reaffirms its commitment to the men’s line and younger consumers in the Chinese market.
Tmall Global Taps China’s Skateboarding Trend
BRAND Tmall Global
PLATFORMS WeChat, Weibo, Xiaohongshu
MEDIUM Image, Offline Events
On June 19, Tmall Global launched the “Summer Skateboard Program” in preparation for the Hangzhou 2022 Asian Games. Originally scheduled to take place in September 2022, the event was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The marketplace also collaborated with 15 overseas skateboard groups like Carver and Santa Cruz, as well as street fashion labels, to tap China’s emerging skateboarding trend.
The campaign hashtag #Summer Skateboard Program garnered 3.1 million views within one week, attracting locals interested in the sport. Skateboarding, among other outdoor activities such as frisbee and rock climbing, has become a way of socializing for Chinese Gen Z. The initiative is intended as a platform for skateboarding enthusiasts to expand their community while connecting businesses to their target consumers.
According to Tmall Global, skateboarding gear recorded triple-digit sales growth year-on-year in the marketplace in 2022. The popularity of the trend is reflected in UGC posts on Xiaohongshu, which saw a 312 percent increase compared to last year. Since 2021, Tmall Global has been betting on various outdoor sports by introducing global companies that are focused on these fast-growing categories. And now, as the Asian Games inspire more communities to take up the sport, these featured brands will be right there with them.
First Aid Beauty Leverages ‘Sisters Who Make Waves’ Sensation
BRAND First Aid Beauty
PLATFORMS WeChat, Weibo, Xiaohongshu
MEDIUM Image, Short-video
FEATURED TALENTS Cyndi Wang (7.1M Weibo Followers), Short-video
Procter & Gamble-owned skincare label First Aid Beauty announced Taiwanese singer Cyndi Wang as its brand ambassador on June 20. Wang was one of the hottest stars in the 2000s and early 2010s and is now a contestant in the third season of the hyper-popular domestic variety show “Sisters Who Make Waves.” Featuring the company’s iconic product, Ultra Repair Cream, the news was marked by the group rolling out complimentary gifts on its WeChat account and flagship store on JD.com.
Given Cyndi Wang’s outstanding performance and popularity in this season of “Sisters Who Make Waves,” the partnership has driven significant social buzz. The campaign hashtag #Fearless, I’m Ready garnered 22 million views within one week, marking a substantial number for a relatively niche overseas business. Given that the star won the second round of the competition in the variety show, the online discussions contributed to the firm’s exposure on Weibo.
The partnership with Cyndi Wang represents an agile move for the skincare brand. The 39-year-old has a sweet look about her that resonates emotionally with today’s Millennial and Gen Z consumers, recalling the memories of their childhood. Alongside the nostalgia marketing, the timing of the appointment will maximize the campaign’s social impact: Wang has become one of top contenders in the competition, where she has showcased her considerable talents as a singer and dancer.