What Brands can learn from Alibaba, Tencent and Xiaomi in China

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What does Alibaba, Tencent and Xiaomi have in common? These companies have not only shaken up the Chinese market, but they have made a huge impact on the entire world. In fact, there are several aspects that a new startup businesses can learn from these companies. For those brands looking to enter into the Chinese market, or for someone who has the next best idea forming in their mind, these tips can help you to focus on what matters.

Quality Does Matter

The quality of the product is something that must never be dismissed. You need to ensure that your product is of high quality, otherwise you are wasting your time in the Chinese market, and in the global market. The founder of Haier, who is the world’s largest manufacturer of washing machines, air conditioners and other major appliances, once took a sledgehammer to a refrigerator stating it wasn’t good enough to sell to consumers. This dedication to quality matters to consumers.

Always Look for New Ideas

The above companies did not make it to where they are based on only one good idea, they have had several. That is why they are so successful. They are not throwing all of their hopes into one basket, so to speak. Companies are always looking for new ideas, and those who develop companies are always considering what is next for them.

Challenges are Opportunities

Do not look at a challenge as though you are going to fail. Look at this as an opportunity to get better. Whether this be providing a better product, increasing customer service or simply learning more about your customer, it is all something that will benefit your business in the end. Consider this, when Alibaba was faced with competition from eBay in the Chinese market, they did not simply let this be. Instead, Alibaba launched Taobao to be direct competition with eBay…and they won in the end.

Read more on why eBay failed in China here

Always think Globally

One of the aspects that these popular companies do is to expand their company on a global level. For example, Alibaba has invested in several firms throughout the United States. Tencent has purchased US video game published, Riot Games. The idea is to look beyond where you are at and what you can offer other countries.

Be the Winner

You must have the attitude to want to become number one in order to be number one. Jack Ma once told the South China Morning Post during the first years with Alibaba:

“We don’t want to be Number One in China. We want to be Number One in the world.”

And most would agree that if the company is not number one globally, they are well on their way there.

Jump into Other Sectors

Do not limit yourself to one sector, if you see an opening that is not being filled, then you can fill it. Many successful companies have seen the need and jumped into another sector in order to meet this need. It may pay off in the end, or it could come back on you. But acquiring another sector is usually just another way in which a company can grow their brand.

Consider Alibaba who has recently jumped into the health sector. It was a bold move and one that has paid off for the company. Read more about their jump into the health sector, here.

Making it In China

There is something to be said about making it in China that is not always found in other parts of the world. According to Edward Tse, the found and CEO of Gao Fend Advisory Company and who is also the author of “The China Strategy”, stated:

“At the heart of China’s entrepreneurial spirit lie three core elements: pride, ambition and a shared cultural heritage.”

Therefore, you must consider these three elements not only when expanding into China, but when building your brand while in China.

About Author

Social Brand Watch (SBW) is a collection of experts in digital, mobile and social media in China. SBW was created to complement Resonance's China Social Branding Report, a bi-weekly report focusing on modern marketing methods of the world's top brands in China.

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