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: from Shiseido to Dior.
JD.com Beauty Channel Reimagines Beauty In the Context of Modern China
PLATFORMS WeChat, Weibo
MEDIUM Short Film
To promote its upcoming JD.com Super Category Day this September 14, the e-commerce giant’s beauty channel released a 9-minute short film titled “Beyond the Beauty” (美丽背后更美丽). Made in partnership with beauty brands such as Lancôme, SK-II, and Perfect Diary, the film showcases the growth of young women in their careers and lives, from graduating college to facing challenges undaunted at work. JD.com also invited beauty KOLs like Benny Dong to share their thoughts on the film with their social followers as a way to extend the meaning of beauty from a superficial level to more thoughtful conversations.
The Weibo hashtag #BeyondtheBeauty (美丽背后更美丽) has now reached 180 million views, and the film has been featured on the Weibo Film channel, where it received over 2.1 million plays. Bilibili users commented that the details of the film mirror their daily lives, particularly the way beauty products shape them in ways that go beyond just makeup tools.
JD Beauty has incorporated a wide range of products while telling stories that seamlessly connect cosmetics with self-care. Hand cream, lipstick, mascara, and masks are not the focus of the story, but they star in many of the scenes. These beauty products act as weapons for the characters, building up their confidence and relieving their anxieties. The film dilutes the presence of products while leaning on traditional storytelling. But it also taps into the growing self-awareness of modern Chinese women and challenges female stereotypes — a terrific way to resonate with younger generations in the country.
Shiseido Taps Into Chinese Female Sugar-Anxiety
PLATFORMS WeChat, Weibo, Douyin
MEDIUM Short Video, Imagery, Livestream
FEATURED TALENTS Wang Feifei (7M Weibo Followers) | Meng Jia (5.2M)
Shiseido introduced its new Vital Perfection Uplifting and Firming Face Cream in collaboration with Wang Feifei and Meng Jia. Both celebrities were recent cast members of the popular reality show Sisters Who Make Waves — an unorthodox idol competition featuring “older” female celebrities between the ages of 30 and 52. The campaign featured Shiseido’s new anti-aging and anti-sugar ingredients that helps prevent premature senility. In addition to 30-second campaign videos, the two will be featured in “HeyLive,” Tmall’s livestream channel for new product launches with top livestreamer Li Jiaqi on September 10.
Wang and Meng’s short videos garnered an impressive 1.4 million and 921,000 views respectively, and their Weibo campaign post has reached over 76,200 views. Their fans, who are mostly the brand’s target customers, showed their appreciation for selecting both Wang and Meng to promote the new product.
As many Chinese females suffer from early aging anxiety, the anti-sugar movement, rumored to slow down premature senility, has taken China by storm via social media. However, giving up sweets is always a challenge for many Chinese females. Shiseido smartly grapples with the struggle, claiming that females can still enjoy a tasty bubble tea and coffee with sugar, while using anti-sugar skincare products to maintain their young looks.
How Dior Markets Its Touring Blockbuster Exhibition To China
PLATFORMS WeChat, Weibo, Bilibili, Douyin
MEDIUM Short Video, Imagery, Audio
FEATURED TALENTS Angelababy (102M Weibo Followers) | Sophie Zhang (20.3M) | Wu Jinyan (13.8M) | Jing Tian (23M)
To introduce the Shanghai stop on Dior’s touring exhibition, Christian Dior: Designer of Dreams, the house invited a wide range of celebrities to attend its July 24 opening. The show featured stars like Wang Kai, Wang Ziwen, and Huang Jingyu, who all shared experiences and posted photos of their visits on Weibo, which helped drive extensive buzz about the blockbuster show.
Throughout the exhibition, the brand rolled out an audio series in collaboration with local media fashion outlets like ELLE China and Vogue China that included interviews with celebrities and a short-video set on the theme of dreams. The brand also filmed virtual tours of the exhibition featuring brand ambassadors Angelababy and Sophie Zhang, posting them on September 6.
Thus far, the Weibo hashtag #ChristianDiorDesignerofDreams has reached 690 million views, and the exhibition has gained extensive awareness among local fashion enthusiasts and luxury shoppers alike. In addition to endorsements from A-list celebrities, user-generated content has contributed to driving social traffic for the exhibition.
While art exhibitions in China have become a golden ticket for some luxury houses to tap into the country’s art frenzy, brands must do more than simply attempt to localize these tours. Since art and cultural initiatives tend to weaken product exposure yet strengthen brand legacy, Dior collaborated with brand ambassadors who presented dynamic storytelling and shared their experiences instead of merely showcasing campaign photos. The approach not only drew offline footprints to the exhibition; it also helped the house strengthen its brand image even more in these local markets.