China’s Second Life

Broadband penetration in China totals 243 million for users age 13 and above. Of those, 224 million, or 92 phipihi.jpg picture by kstel2ercent, contribute to social media. That’s compared to 105 million Americans, or 76 percent of the U.S. broadband population according to Clickz.com.  The Chinese audience has utilized all social media tools from uploading videos to posting to a micro-blog.  Today, companies are taking advantage of the Chinese advancement in technology in order to advertise and market more technical audiences embracing the use of social media.

 China’s Second Life alternative, Hipihi, is a great way for brands to increase their reach to this dynamic audience, which includes over 50,000 registered users in China. Hipihi, according to their website is China’s first 3D virtual world that provides its residents with a real-time online environment for creation, collaboration, commerce, communication and entertainment. The goal is to foster and facilitate the building of an Oriental-influenced virtual world platform that facilitates multi-cultural interactions. Through the removal of physical space-time limits seeks to develop a technology platform people-to-people interaction, HiPiHi for virtual/ online activity that transcends reality and enable a new lifestyle that ignites the passions, dreams and hopes of individuals worldwide.

Hipihi-newsignsatthewelcomearea.png picture by kstel2

Hipihi draws the attention of many bloggers who often visit the site since they were established, in part, due to the Second Life craze in 2005.  Creators of Hipihi used the popularity surrounding virtual worlds to help brands market to consumers using viral worlds as a way to communicate and purchase produces.  Hipihi players are all Chinese and the creators of Hipihi think most of Chinese users are using internet or play games for entertainment or networking, therefore, needed this 3D world to satisfy such needs.  If brands want to learn about the developments and attraction to larger online audiences that Hipihi and other 3D virtual worlds are providing for them, using such websites as Hipihi generates the type of attention that helps make marketing to audiences faster and more of a significant use of social media tools.
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5 Responses to China’s Second Life

  1. Hipihi is an interesting find and site that is tailored to the Chinese audience. What I would have loved to see is you take a look at any brands that have actually done a campaign with this site and what you can learn from their example. The stated audience of 50,000 users seems decent on the surface, but just a drop in the ocean when it comes to the size of the Chinese audience. Some mention and discussion from you in the post about whether you feel that level of audience is significant enough to warrant a brand working with this site also would have added more dimension to your post. (3)

  2. sroneill says:

    I’ve never heard of Hipihi. Interesting piece! As I mention in my post, “Entertained by the Grass Mud-Horse,” it has been proven that Chinese internet users spend more time than Americans on entertainment sites (i.e. online games, music, video, blogs and chatting), but not so much on online banking, purchases, and search engines. I think your post solidifies this point. Which brands and/or organizations do you think would benefit most from using Hipihi to reach their target audience? My first guess would be tech companies/makers/firms who are trying to reach the ‘early adapter’ … although, based on your stats of 92% of Chinses broadboad penetration aged 13+ are using social media, this is certainly not the only demographic! 🙂

  3. shayvg says:

    Yeah I think this is a really interesting find. I have heard of second life and the fact that President Obama used ads in this virtual space, shows how popular this platform can be. I would really like to see how the campaigns are done in this Hipihi space as well.

  4. Adrienne Allmond says:

    Insightful Post! As Rohit suggested, I too would have been interested in getting a more detailed description or example of how a brand, particularly an American brand, has successfully used Hipihi as a social media platform to market their product. In addition, what ways, if any, are Hipihi and Second Life similar/different?

  5. mintybeth says:

    I too am curious as to what companies have experienced success on Hipihi. I know that Second Life has many users, but success resulting in sales for traditional companies has been difficult to come by. But it may be that Hipihi users are more amenable to outreach by companies.

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