How Does Baidu Add Heart to a Search Engine?

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A mother struggles to balance work and family, a butcher has to work hard to pay for his son’s college tuition, a single women learns to love life by herself, and two opposites get married.  Sounds like the plot line of a movie, but Baidu, the popular Chinese search engine that is basically China’s Google, tugs at the heart strings with their new video ad – watch the full video here.  The ad shows how every search is not just a simple question, it’s an answer that’s impacted someone’s life.

The Baidu Stories

A working mother struggles to work and take care of her child.  She asks Baidu:  “Are there any suitable places for a one year old baby to play?” “How can I get my baby to eat carrots?”

A butcher works hard to pay for his son’s post-graduate school, and asks Baidu: “What computer is suitable for post-graduate school?” “Where is the cheapest place to rent an apartment in Shanghai?” “Where can I set up a store in Beijing in the evening?”

A woman is 32 years old, and she is trying to live a happy life even without a husband.  She asks Baidu:  “How do I play ukulele?” “How do I find a good coffee machine?” “Is the term left-over women a negative?” “How do I live elegantly by myself?”

A couple with completely different tastes search Baidu to find a way to understand each other.  They ask:  “How do I help my boyfriend lose weight?” “What can I do if my girlfriend says I don’t understand romance?”  “What’s the most romantic way to propose?”

Baidu’s Answer

Baidu’s answers to their questions help the working mother learn how to care for her child, the butcher finds the best way to support his son financially, the woman finds ways to love life and herself without being married, and the couple ends up married.

More than Just a Search Engine

These stories echo the voice of the everyday Chinese people.  The end of the video ad leaves us with the message that translates to say,

“Behind every question there is a determined mind to be better.” 

I think Baidu sends the message that every person’s voice and question should be heard and all their stories are important.  There has been a lot of controversy about the Chinese search engine recently, but maybe this heartfelt ad will win over some Baidu critics.

 

About Author

Leah Basford

Leah is a researcher on the SMART@Resonance team. She originally hails from Centerville, Indiana, and as an avid foodie, Guangzhou naturally is the Chinese city she enjoys exploring the most.

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