The smartphone market in China is full of stiff competition, and those who are trying to compete in this market have to do something which sets them apart to consumers. Xiaomi Corp is one of the leading producers of smartphones, and the reason for this is due to the way they treat their customers. Xiaomi has reached out and with the help of social media, has developed a following of loyal customers, which has helped to market their brand into a very dense and populated market within China.
Their marketing approach is one of interest to those who are just now entering into the market. The company rarely runs advertisements for their phones, yet they have had a successful 2014 year.
In 2014, Xiaomi sold 61.1 million smartphones
With the number of phones sold, the company saw a 227% increase over the prior year. The company is now being valued at $45 billion.
Xiaomi phones are automatically of interest to many consumers, as these phones are comparable to Apple and Samsung products. But, they are almost always half the price of these other phones. This is one reason why Xiaomi is performing so well on the market, as their phones are considered a deal by many consumers.
But, how is the company branding themselves without the use of huge advertisements? They are utilizing their consumers and social media to their advantage. Xiaomi likes to treat their consumers as though they are all part of this big club that you can only belong to through being a Xiaomi customer. This small group is what makes people want to learn more about the company, so they too can be included.
Recently, the company hosted a party at a nightclub within China and invited 300 of their fans to the party. Many of those who were invited would have never gotten such an opportunity before, but Xiaomi made it happen. Thereby, marking themselves as the company to go with for many of these consumers. The throwing of a party is not something new for the smartphone maker, as they are usually throwing these parties every few weeks in and around China so all of their consumers can be involved.
The company utilizes Weibo and 10.7 million followers. They also use overseas sites like Twitter, where they have 59,000 followers, and their Indonesian Facebook page has 64,0000 likes. This does not seem like much when looking at their advertising platform, and it is a method many professionals warn against for businesses who want to take over the market. Which is something that Xiaomi would like to do as they are looking to develop their products and sell these at a low price to ensure everyone has access to quality electronics and technology.
However, Xiaomi is putting their customers first, making friends with those who buy their products and learning what they need to change to make these products even better. Senior executives are often seen talking with regular customers about the phone in question and what needs to be done. This hands on approach to the marketing has allowed the company to avoid huge marketing expenses, but has resulted in a huge sales increase.
Xiaomi even goes so far as to send gifts to their fans who help to spread the word about their products.
The approach that Xiaomi is taking with their branding is one which consumers are enjoying. A customer is not just a number to Xiaomi, and this approach is working for them. Whether all Chinese brands could benefit from the same approach is not likely, as this approach is special and only works for certain demographics.