Leading pioneer of the selfie, mobile gaming magnate, and emoji tycoon Kim Kardashian is getting social media savvy in the China market with a new official account on Chinese social shopping app RED.
The popularity of RED, or Xiaohongshu (小红书, “Little Red Book”), has seen major growth in popularity in the China market in the past year. Chinese mega-celebrities have launched official accounts and created posts with the app’s unique combination of photo, video, product review, and shopping content. Kardashian is by far the biggest American celebrity to launch on the app after she created her first post today, attracting 16,000 followers so far as of the time of publication.
RED’s cross-border shopping component seems to be a big point of interest for Kim, who announced that she’ll soon be launching her perfume line on the app. Gartner L2’s Beauty China report previously described how perfume giant Coty has been relying on RED and other cross-border platforms to sell in China, where fragrance is beginning to take off. Cross-border e-commerce has been a way for brands to test the waters in the market, especially in product categories that are newer to Chinese consumers.
Kardashian is also taking a page out of Fan Bingbing’s playbook, as the now-missing actress has used RED to launch products from her popular FANBEAUTY line. Fan likewise followed in the footsteps of Kim and sister Kylie as they excelled at the beauty product “drop” model in the United States, relying on social media announcements to move products from their eponymous brands. RED allows celebrities to take the beauty drop a step further, linking directly from their product launch posts to purchase within the app.
As one of the biggest influencers worldwide, Kardashian’s addition to RED arguably makes it one of the hottest social media platforms on the globe for influencers interested in converting their cachet to commerce. While the platform is mostly limited to Chinese celebrities and influencers right now, top fashion blogger Chiara Ferragni’s fashion brand also operates an official shop on the platform.
Reactions to Kardashian’s new profile are mostly positive with comments expressing surprise about seeing her on the platform. One user comment exclaims, “Xiaohongshu is becoming more and more international; will it become China’s Instagram?” And while her husband Kanye West continues to stir up controversy in the United States, he doesn’t seem to be a liability in China: a comment suspicious of Kim’s enthusiasm for China was met with fans defending her and citing fact that Kanye used to live there when he was a child.