Weibo Turbocharges Its KOC Network For Beauty Brands

What Happened 

The social networking platform, Weibo, is turbocharging its key-opinion-consumer network for beauty brands. Earlier this month, it launched a new hashtag #trynewmakeup (#开新) to recruit KOCs to work with makeup brands. To date, the hashtag has amassed 1.29 billion views and 227 thousand discussions.

To participate, applicants need to either post a photo of themselves with a bit of text or a vlog about their own makeup and skincare products while tagging #trynewmakeup. Then they need to fill out basic information on a web page. On June 16, Weibo launched the first event with the Korean beauty brand Papa Recipe to recruit 15 KOCs to review their new products. 


Canadian beauty brand Papa Recipe is among the first to work with Weibo’s KOCs. Photo: Weibo

Jing Take

Compared to rival WeChat, Weibo has been slow on releasing new tools or partnerships with brands, but in a virus-battered economy, it is rightly stepping up its game. 

For the fiscal quarter ending on March 31 this year, owner Sina reported that Weibo’s revenue from advertising and marketing dropped 19 percent from a year ago. It is a significant loss given that Weibo accounts for around 80 percent of the group’s margin. But their new KOC network is likely to be a new revenue stream with a minimal investment.

Brands, especially the smaller ones, can benefit from this rather low-budget marketing approach. Collaborating with Weibo could give a brand exposure during the recruiting phase, and another wave of exposure as KOCs post about the products. Let’s see if this will work on both ends.

The Jing Take reports on a piece of the leading news and presents our editorial team’s analysis of the key implications for the luxury industry. In the recurring column, we analyze everything from product drops and mergers to heated debate sprouting on Chinese social media.

Editor’s Note: A previous version of this article stated Pape Recipe is a Canadian brand. This is incorrect. Papa Recipe is a Korean beauty brand with global reach.


Beauty, Marketing, Tech