Live-streaming in China with Eva Xiao

Live-streaming in China with Eva Xiao
Eva Xiao discussed the live-streaming phenomenon & ecosystem within China and explored the business models & distribution for brands and content moderation.

Eva Xiao from Tech In Asia joined us in a discussion on  the live-streaming ecosystem within China and debunked the major misconceptions by western media on the phenomenon itself. We dived deep to the major live-streaming apps, the business models for the live-streaming platforms, celebrities and online users and how digital gifting has become the dominant mode of monetisation that differed from the rest of the world. We examined the content moderation by Chinese government and the platforms, the ecosystem for brands from overseas to market their products in China and the trends in the next 2-3 years. 

Here are the interesting show notes and links to the discussion (with time-stamps included):

  • Eva Xiao, China Reporter in Tech In Asia (@evawxiao, LinkedIn, Wechat: evawxiao, Tech In Asia)
    • Moving from Technode to Tech In Asia
  • Live-streaming in China
    • Can you briefly introduce the concept and phenomena of live-streaming otherwise known as zhibo (直播) in China?
      • Key difference from live streaming in the U.S/Europe: digital gifting is standard, a norm
      • Kamcord is an exception, but it’s focused on gamers – Chinese live streamers run the gamut of different content genres
      • User engagement is therefore different as well
      • Digital gifts in exchange for favors and recognition
    • What are the popular apps in China where most users utilise for live-streaming?
    • Types of livestreaming
      • Showroom
        • Ex: live music performances
      • Lifestyle
        • Mixed bag of casual content, from social eating to live streaming outdoor travel experiences
      • Gaming
      • Sport
    • How do these apps differ from each other? Who are the Chinese investors or corporations behind some of these companies?
      • Differences in content genres, commission rates (ex: Douyu takes 50% of the live streaming host’s cut), digital gift types
    • Who are the celebrities known for livestreaming?
    • How does many people able to reach so many people with live-streaming? Is it true that most celebrities on livestreaming in China are mostly women?
    • Is it possible for brands from overseas to access China via marketing with livestreaming? Have you seen interesting examples?
    • How does the celebrities leverage livestreaming to make money via ecommerce, digital gifting and advertising? Which is the best model shown so far?
      • Taobao Live
    • How does these livestreaming apps monetize for their platforms?
      • Virtual gifts
      • Advertising
    • Given that there are extensive coverage on livestreaming in China by western media, what are the pieces of information which they do not get right or understand about Chinese in this area?
    • Even, the well-known app for China is now going into livestreaming, with, how do you see this space heating up? (You might to do a brief intro to
      • Lively (and Musically) target the North American teen market (so kind of an exceptional example)
      • Increase in digital celebrities in the entertainment space (ex: musicians who became famous through their social media presence, not traditional channels)
      • Livestreaming becoming more commonplace as a platform for advertising and branding
      • Livestreaming becoming a must-have feature for social platforms
    • Where do you see the competition and market for livestreaming go in the next 2 years?


Podcast Information:

The show is hosted by Bernard Leong (@bleongcw) and are sponsored by Ideal Workspace (Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn) with their new Altizen Desk on Indiegogo (Twitter, Facebook, Medium). Also check out Ideal Workspace’s new standing desk, Altizen and sign up for their mailing list. Sound credits for the intro music: Taro Iwashiro, “The Beginning” from Red Cliff Soundtrack.