XIMALAYA FM MARKETING GUIDE
WHAT IS XIMALAYA?
Launched in 2012, Ximalaya FM is China’s most popular professional platform for podcasting and audio-sharing. With the motto ‘Anytime, anywhere, listening to anything I like (随时随地, 听我想听)’, the creators of the platform aim to provide the best and most convenient audio experience to its users through mobile apps and online webpages.
As of January, 2020, Ximalaya had 470 million mobile users and 79.9 million monthly active users giving it 62.8% of the online audio market in China. It also has 35 million overseas users globally. This means that it’s one of the top 50 most popular apps in China.
Its content is sourced from a community of 8,000 top level, verified, cultural commentators and bloggers and over 7 million regular audio hosts who share their insights, Ximalaya’s content covers over 300 categories including the humanities, history, art, music, movies, news, entertainment, foreign languages, health, travel, gaming, finance and many more. It has more than 15 million pieces of audio work.
With this large amount of diverse audio content, Ximalaya has become a major stage for audio artists and online KOLs in China, and is often regarded as the YouTube of audio in China.
WHY SHOULD I USE IT FOR MARKETING?
Over 3,000 brands, including famous brands from all over the world, like McDonald’s, Pizza Hut, KFC, Durex and L’Oréal have done marketing on Ximalya FM. Here are some reasons for its popularity.
1. It’s the leader in China’s growing paid digital content sector.
Paid digital content services have gained popularity among Chinese consumers in the past few years. In 2020, the sector is expected to grow to 23.5 billion RMB. Ximalaya FM, as the leader in the field, is able to attract consumers with different interests and purchasing power from different geographical locations. According to data released by the platform, over 50% of its users are aged 20-30 and nearly 80% have bachelor’s degrees or above. This means that doing marketing on Ximalaya FM, enables your brand messages to reach young Chinese customers with higher purchasing power.
2. Ximalaya FM’s users are unique.
Research shows that Ximalaya FM users have a low overlap rate with other major social media platforms like Tencent Video, TikTok, iQIYI, Youku and Tencent News. This means that the platform is largely supported by a unique user community. The effectiveness and cost-efficiency of audio ads on Ximalaya FM are higher and will help you reach customers that are unreachable using other platforms.
3. Voice-based content cuts through the noise.
In a digitalized world full of textual and visual content, audio recordings are one of the best alternatives to attract Chinese consumers. On Ximalaya FM, you can promote your products with audio ads from 15-30 seconds. Users, especially those without a membership account, are unlikely to skip ads and the attention for these kinds of ads is usually high.
The iOS version of the Ximalaya FM app fully supports voice commands and has a smart speaker making things even more convenient, especially for those with visual disabilities.
4. You can listen any time, anywhere.
Audio content is unique because people can listen to it while they do other things and in all kinds of situations. They can listen before they go to sleep, during a break at work, while dining, while driving or when they’re waiting for someone. Peak usage times are from 8am to 1pm and 9pm to 10pm, coinciding with commutes, lunchtime and the most relaxed hours in the evening. This strong correlation with one’s daily routines means that audio content is likely to leave a deep impression on its audience, making it a perfect channel for online marketing.
Ximalaya FM is not only available for mobile app users, but also for anyone who has access to the internet with personal computers or tablets. This makes simultaneous promotion to customers with different devices possible.
5. You’ve got promotional flexibility.
Using Ximalaya FM to promote your products is easy and flexible. The platform uses a PUGC (Professional User Generated Content) model which allows brand representatives to be KOLs by recording their own messages and publishing on the platform in any quantity and in any form. This includes audiobooks (有聲書), songs, audio dramas, etc. This gives marketers a high degree of flexibility.
6. The fan economy (粉丝经济).
By creating your own account and opening a channel on Ximalaya FM, your brand can develop itself as an influencer on the platform and create its own fan community. By developing your own fan club, you will strengthen customer loyalty, enhance your long-term competitiveness and gain more control over your customer relationship management. The sponsorship function enables your fans to make direct contributions to your brand KOLs.
HOW TO DO MARKETING ON XIMALYA
Marketing on Ximalya FM is done in 4 key ways:
1. Product Placement
Marketing messages and self-made ads can be inserted into your audio recordings. You can also integrate and embed marketing communication and themes directly into your content.
2. Channel Building
Opening a brand account on Ximalaya FM is a good way to expand marketing for your company. Become an active member of the community by building your brand’s media channel. Your account can fulfill some of the roles of a KOL by building a reputation for quality content or engage in CRM activities. With the creation of a clear style and defined brand positioning, you can effectively increase customer loyalty.
3. KOL Cooperations
KOLs on Ximalaya can act as partners for your marketing campaigns. Many of them have thousands of followers. Online and offline, cooperating with KOLs will expose your products to their fan communities, expanding the customer scope of your brand.
4. Paid Content
Chinese podcast listeners believe that paid content is better quality and more professional. If your free content can get an audience, why not produce paid content? It can be offered to brand club members on an exclusive basis and encourage fans to join the brand’s membership plan. This in turn can help the brand engage in more sophisticated CRM or establish private traffic pools.
Paid content can come in many forms: a direct purchase of exclusive content, a paid subscription, paid courses with professional speakers, etc. All of these will increase the diversity of your content and bring additional revenue to the brand.
Below are two examples of successful marketing campaigns by well-known corporations with Ximalaya FM:
Case 1: Ping An Insurance (中國平安) x Ximalaya FM
On Christmas Eve in 2018, PAI, in cooperation with Ximalaya FM, organized a “cultural feast” on mental wealth. PAI invited well-known speakers from various fields such as finance, culture, art and psychology to share their insights and knowledge. Comprehensive discussions and interactions were conducted during the event.
PAI has also developed its own brand channel on Ximalaya FM: Under the category of “Understanding wealth is about knowing yourself”, the PAI channel provides content created by professionals from different sectors to answer questions from its subscribers on financial topics.
Case 2: KCF x Ximalaya FM
KFC worked with Ximalaya FM to do a 24-hour live podcast to promote its new product: KFC Fresh Ground Coffee. The event was carefully designed. It combined the leisurely pace of coffee culture and the lightness of audio listening. Customers were invited to visit the three live podcast locations in Guangzhou, Shanghai and Beijing, where customers were offered a cup of the new coffee by KOLs. This created a relaxed, enjoyable, novel environment for customers to try the brand’s new product, which in turn increased its popularity.
The event was a huge success. At its peak, there were more than 65,000 simultaneous listeners and the broadcasts generated 46,000 comments, boosting public awareness of the product.
HOW CAN ALARICE HELP YOU DO YOUR XIMALAYA MARKETING?
1. Account management and cost control
Our team is experienced at setting up social media accounts and is acquainted with the Ximalaya FM team. We know the requirements and the secrets to keeping costs low. We’ll help you understand all the statistics from your brand channel that you need to determine the popularity of your brand in the Chinese market and the success of your marketing efforts.
2. Copywriting and production
Choosing the right KOLs, who have authentic followings and align with your brand, is key. We’ll help you choose the right influencers who can bring real results.
Seeing the whole picture is essential. We’ll give you an overview of the market, and can study the online marketing strategies of your competitors to help you stay ahead of the competition.
If you are interested in knowing more about Ximalaya marketing and our services, contact us now.
Audio content marketing is on the rise in China and Ximalaya FM is a great opportunity to reach out to 200 million Chinese consumers. By working with us, you can be sure that:
- Alarice tracks the most recent trends and consumer insights on Ximalaya in order to create the most engaging content for your account and launch effective campaigns.
- We work closely with the Ximalaya internal team and often know of new functions and updates first.
- Our team will assign a personal account manager who will explain each step of the process. We deliver genuine, verifiable results and help you to become China marketing experts yourselves.
Why do I need a Chinese name?
It’s an opportunity to deliver messages about your brand in a way that the majority of the population can understand. A good name in Chinese also helps to show a connection with the local market, culture and people.
How would you select a Chinese name for my brand ?
Our team will come up with several options which not only sound good but also be positive, rich in meaning and communicate your origin and mission with potential customers.
What if the name has already been registered?
In China the first company to register a name has the top priority to use it. Before suggesting any options to you, our team will check the names that have already been registered by another company and inform you of the ones that have already been registered.