Marketing in China is never easy, but being a marketer in China faces a whole different set of challenges.

Campaign Magazine published a recent article titled: “What Will It Take to Be a China CMO in 2030?” where the author of ‘China CMO’ shares insights from interviews with 18 marketing leaders.

When discussing the marketing leaders of the future, author greg Paull points out that they, like the marketing strategies they will produce, will be bilingual: English and Mandarin, Digital and traditional, east and west.

Things to watch for as the market changes:

  • The biggest area for potential change is the growth of the “global-local” company. The Chinese equivalents of Samsung, Sony and Shangri-la Hotels are proven leaders in Asian markets with global ambitions. Some examples include Haier, Li Ning and Lenovo.
  • Digital will be at the heart of change in China. Already cities such as Hangzhou have converted to entirely digital TV. The growth of online video sites like Youku and Tudou at the expense of TV viewership is only going to continue. Keep an eye out for cloud based smart TVs.
  • Challenges  in dealing with the online payment system- for example, Alipay is fast becoming a currency in China in its own right and defeating all other payment options, how will competitors cope? as a result of this and other issues, a more structured score card is need to be an industry standard which measures more than just clicks and followers, but changes in brand equity and ultimately sales.


It is important to understand where the growth is coming from in order to best harness it. A recent McKinsey study told a key story: Beyond the top hundred cities in China, the next 300 are small today but by 2020 will command 30% of the GDP — and this amount will only increase over time. As a result, Chinese marketing is going to become hyper-local, demanding talent that can handle this dynamic.

So watch out marketers, you have a lot on your plate.

Source: Ad Age- Article here.