Archives for posts with tag: china

Trufflepig Search is pleased to report our success in Asia.  We opened as a division of Berkhemer Clayton, Inc. 18 months ago (Jan 2011) to help American corporations find communications and digital marketing executives in Asia.  Already we have handled senior-level communications searches for Gap Inc., GE, Coca-Cola Japan, and large public relations agencies in China. Our Managing Director in HK is Ms. Sai Pradhan, who previously worked here in LA for Berkhemer Clayton.  Our experience demonstrates that even service businesses like ours can export or expand into Asia. We consulted with Invest Hong Kong  to learn the legal and technical requirements of opening our business there.

Research recently published by Committee of 100–Chinese-American business leaders here in U.S. who do business in China—spotlights current opinions in both China and U.S. today.  The Committee of 100 researchers interviewed 4,000 people in China and U.S.—private citizens as well as business leaders. Findings showed that in both countries, there is a considerable gap between the views of general public versus the views of business people and political leaders. Looking at improving relationships between people in China and America, findings showed that increased understanding of language, culture and travel back and forth build trust.

Some of the observations:  People in China have favorable impressions of American culture and way of life, and see a cooperative relationship.  Chinese people are optimistic and confident about their own futures.  They now see themselves as a superpower.

Both groups value each other’s prominence in the world—they see need for cooperation to benefit global financial stability. But sometimes we don’t trust each other’s governments, Charlie Woo told Betsy Berkhemer-Credaire and Renee Fraser on their radio show UnfinishedBusiness.  Charlie owns MegaToys in Los Angeles  He is a C-100 leader, along with Chancellor Frank Wu, from UC Hastings College of Law in San Francisco, who said the Chinese cite problems in their own country with government corruption and an inadequate legal system. The U.S. participants cite a significant problem with Chinese copying American intellectual property. The research shows a trend for the first time that an increasing number of Chinese people see IP as a problem as well.

Charlie says China is soon going to be the world’s largest consumer economy—not just exporter of products, but consumer of goods, especially high-value big name American products.  That’s good news for companies expanding their business in China.  We are there to help.

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Pinterest is the latest Social Graph, a concept that Mark Zuckerberg founded in 2008.  The idea of the Social Graph is to analyze users’ content sharing and interactions with each other.  Pinterest has garnered immense popularity over the past months with individuals and businesses alike.  Pinterest is also popular overseas and in China.  By allowing users to focus on spreading their interests instead of enabling just another social network, Pinterest is an ideal social media tool for marketing and branding. Businesses can use Pinterest to showcase their products, develop a stronger brand, and establish rapport with their customers.

Smoyz, an Israeli digital agency, has gone beyond just having a company Pinterest account, by developing an entire campaign based on this Social Graph.  The agency studied the pins of 50 women and created personalized items for each woman.  The response to this campaign was immense:  the 50 women brought in 2,284 interactions and 694, 853 impressions.  This feedback was possible because Pinterest is all about spreading and sharing interests.

Another innovative use of Pinterest comes from China, where companies create Pinterest clones– sites that provide the same service as Pinterest but with different names.  Two of these companies, Mogujie.com and Melishuo.com, allow users to pin proucts only from the site Taobao.com, China’s largest eCommerce site.  Even though users have only one site to “pin” from, both these Pinterest clones are a success.

Currently, Pinterest is the ideal platform for sharing interests.  Companies can optimize their use of Pinterest to increase traffic to their site and to build a wider audience.

For more on how to differentiate your brand with social media.

From Sai Pradhan, Managing Director of Trufflepig Search Limited Hong Kong:

Ripa Rashid, Executive Vice President of the Center of Work-Life Policy was in Hong Kong last week, speaking at a luncheon organized by Asia Society.

I was pleased to see a presentation dedicated to talent retention in China and India and women in the workplace within Asia Society’s March repertoire. Ripa Rashid of the Center of Work-Life Policy recently co-authored an article for Harvard Business Review, ‘The Battle for Female Power in China and India,’ in context of multinational corporations looking to China and India for growth, and within those geographies, female talent, as an important factor. At Asia Society’s luncheon at the Foreign Correspondents Club, Ripa shared some of her key themes and findings from her research. Here are the highlights:

  • The percentage of women at tertiary education levels has increased 10% in the last decade in India and 23% in China. This is evidence of the increasingly highly qualified female talent pool in both countries.
  • 85% of women in India and 83% of women in China are eager to be promoted to the next level, compared to 52% in the U.S. With ambition levels at such a high, women seem poised for professional advancement.
  • Women are reported to show high levels of loyalty to their employers in both countries: 92% in India and 88% in China. I wondered if this meant their pay scales didn’t jump as much as they might. I asked Ripa after the luncheon, and she said that generally speaking, women had different consideration factors than their male counterparts in finding and staying with favourable employers. Factors such as the quality of their teams, their comfort level with company policies, and the fact that the longer they stayed with their employers, the more likely they were to avail of flexible schedules, outweighed the desire for salary bumps.
  • In contextualizing the female talent pool in China and India, Ripa described the various ‘pulls’ on women in these countries. 35% of Chinese women and 52% of Indian women face pressure to drop out after they have their first child. ‘Daughterly guilt’ weighs 88% of women down in China and 70% of women in India, while maternal guilt affects 86% and 62% respectively.
  • She then went on to describe some of the ‘push’ factors. Jobs are becoming more extreme, with longer hours for women in China and India. On average, Ripa shared, they are working between 10-18 additional hours per week compared to their workload three years ago. An astounding statistic indeed.  Prejudice in the workplace affects 55% of women in India (enough for them to consider quitting or pulling back from their jobs) and 48% of women in China. Safety, and practical and cultural barriers to international mobility (considered an important part of professional advancement), are other factors that ‘push’ women in these countries.
  • China’s one-child policy means that it will soon be faced with a graying population, whereas in India, the demographics weigh favourably toward the young but are faced with infrastructural challenges in the country.

Ripa shared a few models that some companies have employed to attract and sustain the best female talent, and help women deal with the various pulls and pushes of the work environment, such as Google India’s Women’s Engineering Award, Intel’s Women at Intel in China, and Cisco’s Extended Flex Program.

By Sai Pradhan, Managing Director HK, Trufflepig Search Limited

In August 2010, Ogilvy PR’s 360 Degree Digital Influence Practice’s Social Media team in China put together an infographic to show China’s social media equivalents in an expansive list of categories: wikis, deal-of-the-day, instant messaging, blogging, and SNS to name a few. While the equivalents may have different features, they take on enough similarities to be comparable in terms of user demographics and usage. The most basic example is China’s Ren Ren which is a Facebook equivalent.

On March 2, 360 Degree Digital Influence released an updated version which showcases just how much change has taken place in the short six-month period. The new infographic gives a quick snapshot of the increase in platforms. Groupon’s commitment to China is reflected, as are Quora (compare to Yahoo Answers) and Tencent’s (Internet service portal) micro-blogging services.

“Making graphics like this is, of course, far from an exact science,” writes Thomas Crampton, Asia Pacific Director of 360 Digital Influence. We agree, Thomas, but it’s a great, easily digestible visual regardless.

Read the full article here: China Social Media Evolution

By Sai Pradhan, Managing Director, Trufflepig Search Limited, Hong Kong

Burson-Marsteller has predicted 11 trends in the digital communications realm in China for 2011. “If 2009 and 2010 was a period of ‘digital foreplay’ for companies at large, then 2011 and 2012 are pegged to be the year of ‘digital embrace,’” said Zaheer Nooruddin, director and lead digital strategist at Burson-Marsteller China in a recent article in Campaign Asia.

Burson’s predictions hit the nail on the head. Trufflepig Search in Hong Kong is witnessing the digital re-think in China as companies seek sound, integrated social media strategies versus the usually scattered tactical approaches everyone took to in previous years simply to be on the bandwagon. ROI is more important now than ever, as better services become available. More senior-level executives are taking to Twitter and Sina Weibo (China’s Twitter equivalent) as the need to engage and promote transparency becomes more apparent. Other predictions include the rise of the use of infographics to convey data, marketing based on the use of location-based communications, increased group buying activity, and the recognition of the value of the mobile web market in China.

Hand in hand with China’s predicted ‘digital embrace’ as Nooruddin cleverly calls it, is the increasing demand for excellent social media fluent professionals.

BM’s Digital communications Trends for China in 2011

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