Consumer goods spend in China rose 4.6% year-on-year in Q2, suggesting that after hitting a low in 2015, the segment is beginning to rebound. With e-commerce accounting for an increasing percentage of sales, successful CPG brands make digital a cornerstone of their marketing strategy. The top brands in L2’s Digital IQ Index: China CPG focus on mobile advertising, social media, and live streaming to ensure continued relevance.
1. L’Oréal Paris
Digital IQ: 152
Live streaming is one of the biggest digital trends in China, and L’Oréal has taken full advantage of the opportunities offered by the technology. The #CannesInRealTime# (零时差追戛纳) campaign, where celebrity ambassadors provided behind-the-scenes access to the Cannes Film Festival, scored 3.1 million viewers on Meipai. After the campaign, L’Oréal rose from fifth to third in shelf share for Hair Care keywords on Tmall.
Digital IQ: 148
Electric Razors have the highest Digital IQ in the Index, and Genius brand Philips leads that group. The brand excels at customer service on WeChat, with auto and manual reply, user manuals, and live chat features. Its e-toothbrush campaign encouraged trials at dentist offices in three cities across China, letting consumers play a game for a chance to win a coupon.
Digital IQ: 133
In 2015 Huggies China sales grew by more than 25%. Although the brand saw less growth this year, it had some significant advertising successes. Sizeable cross-platform media spend helped the #Crazybabytalks# video series go viral – generating more than a million mentions on Weibo and resulting in the brand’s largest single e-commerce spend day on JD.com.
3. Vidal Sassoon
Digital IQ: 133
Celebrity content typically gets the most views on Chinese social media, as evidenced by the top 10 most engaged posts on WeChat. Vidal Sassoon’s video series Model Talks, which featured celebrities including model Liu Wen and the editor of Chinese Vogue trading hair styling tips, accounts for four of the top 10 posts.
Digital IQ: 132
Campaigns, display ads, and sampling on maternity community sites and apps seem to be paying off for Pampers. The diaper brand achieves the highest visibility of any brand on mobile, both for branded and unbranded search.
Digital IQ: 130
By naming teen pop band TFBoys brand ambassadors, Safeguard generated significant social media buzz, both on the brand account and elsewhere. The announcement of the ambassadorship is the second most popular post on Weibo in the whole CPG category.
Digital IQ: 127
Oral-B stands out for its sophisticated Tmall Store, as well as its WeChat strategy, which integrates e-commerce, loyalty, O2O, and sampling. The brand’s Chinese-language app also enables users to to track their daily brushing regimen and search for nearby dentists.
Digital IQ: 125
Pantene has made significant display and SEM investments, accounting for nearly a quarter of Hair Care paid links against nonbranded terms on Baidu. Along with L’Oréal Paris and Philips, Pantene leads all brands in purchasing ads against non-branded terms.
Digital IQ: 124
Western brands generate the most engagement on Weibo, and Crest leads the pack, partnering with celebrity Lu Han to drive huge engagement. Meanwhile, the revamped brand site improves search and navigation, adds ratings and reviews to product pages, and devotes a tab to Tmall and JD.com links.
Digital IQ: 123
Mobile advertising is even bigger in China than the U.S., accounting for more than half of online advertising spend and nearly a third of total ad spend. Gillette has followed this trend, investing aggressively in mobile advertising on Baidu and popular apps.