Can NET-A-PORTER’s Celebrity Cast Pay Off In China?

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 two campaigns, including NET-A-PORTER’s announcement on its newly appointed brand partner and SkinCeuticals’ short film release in collaboration with extensive celebrities.

NET-A-PORTER Announces a New Male Idol as Brand Partner 

PLATFORMS Weibo, Tmall
MEDIUM Images, Short-video, Livestream
FEATURED TALENTS Liu Yu (4M Weibo Followers)

On September 22, NET-A-PORTER, the global luxury e-commerce company, officially announced that Liu Yu, the leader of the boy group INTO1, would be its Tmall Brand Partner to help celebrate the second anniversary of its official flagship store launch on Tmall in 2019. Additionally, the young celebrity participated in a livestream on Tmall to share his personal journey in INTO1, as well as some of his styling inspirations.

The idol economy has been diluted in China, as the country has been curbing idol fandom on the internet. Still, Yu’s four million Weibo followers drove substantial traffic for the campaign. The announcement post was reposted by over 245,000 Weibo users, with many supportive comments below.

As the rivalry among luxury e-commerce brands intensifies in China, players are putting more effort into boosting their image among local digital shoppers. To achieve this goal, celebrity endorsements are still considered an efficient approach despite the recent crackdown on fan communities. Given this, perhaps a smaller scale partnership — in place of a long-term commitment — is a safer bet to leverage immediate traffic.

SkinCeuticals Releases Short film on Chinese Professionals

BRAND SkinCeuticals
MEDIUM Images, Short-video
FEATURED TALENTS Bai Jingting (30.4M Weibo Followers) | Jian Zihao (5.7M) | Mai Zi (903K) | Su Yiming (74.2K)

L’Oréal-owned skincare brand SkinCeuticals teamed up with the digital creative house Xinshixiang to produce a short film called “The Power To Become.” The film features six celebrities with achievements in their respective fields (tennis player Li Na, e-sports player Jian Zihao, actor Bai Jingting, director Mai Zi, dermatology expert Li Xiaomin, and snowboarder Su Yiming) and exposes the dedication along their career journeys that led to their professional success.

Since the two-minute short film first launched on September 16, over 1.5 million users have viewed it on Weibo. The campaign hashtag #ThePowerToBecome garnered over 15 million views in one week, thanks to an endorsement from the brand’s China ambassador, Bai Jingting. Meanwhile, the cast, particularly Jian Zihao and Su Yiming, allowed the campaign to reach broader audiences beyond the brand’s usual followers.

As a brand dedicated to providing advanced skincare products backed by science, SkinCeuticals is distinguishing itself from others in the field by strengthening its professional image through campaigns like this one. And as more Chinese beauty shoppers show a greater interest in researching skincare ingredients and formulas, innovative dermatology products can use popular local professionals to expand their market shares.