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