BREAK­ING THROUGH THE CHI­NESE WALL

There’s an old Chi­nese proverb: “All things are dif­fi­cult be­fore they are easy”. Chi­nese Her­ald owner Lili Wang has turned the dif­fi­cult task of break­ing into the lo­cal Chi­nese mar­ket into a much eas­ier propo­si­tion.

New Zealand Marketing - - Chinese Herald - For more in­for­ma­tion about the Chi­nese Her­ald con­tact Christina Yu at christina@chnet.co.nz or phone 021 329328

When the Chi­nese Her­ald took out the ‘Best Medium/large Busi­ness of the Year’ award at the New­mar­ket Busi­ness Awards 2018 in June this year it was just one more ac­co­lade in a pro­ces­sion of ac­knowl­edge­ments for Chi­nese Her­ald owner Lili Wang.

From the time this suc­cess­ful en­tre­pre­neur ar­rived in New Zealand 26 years ago as a young in­ter­na­tional stu­dent with a big suit­case and even big­ger dreams,

through to her ac­qui­si­tion of The Chi­nese Her­ald in 2015, Ms Wang has con­trib­uted greatly to the bring­ing to­gether of the lo­cal Chi­nese com­mu­nity with the coun­try they have cho­sen.

Many as­tute ad­ver­tis­ers and mar­keters have al­ready recog­nised the op­por­tu­nity the Chi­nese Her­ald and its as­so­ci­ated plat­forms af­ford them in their desire to tap into a bur­geon­ing, high value mar­ket sec­tor, with Chi­nese Her­ald go­ing from strength to strength.

Chi­nese NZ Her­ald is a three times win­ner of the New Zealand China Me­dia Awards 2014-2016, and to­day the news­pa­per em­ploys a team of 30, with top jour­nal­ists and edi­tors com­mit­ted to balanced, fac­tu­ally based and in­spir­ing story-telling.

In 2016 the Chi­nese Her­ald formed a joint ven­ture with NZME to cre­ate the news web­site, cnzher­ald.com. The deal with NZME is deemed to be the first time a New Zealand main­stream me­dia has part­nered with an eth­nic me­dia to de­liver news in Chi­nese lan­guage.

Chi­nese Her­ald News­pa­per is the only Chi­nese lan­guage me­dia on­board ma­jor air­lines fly­ing be­tween China and New Zealand, in­clud­ing South­ern China Air­lines, China Eastern Air­lines, Air New Zealand, Cathay Pa­cific and Tian­jin Air­lines. Other air­lines fly­ing be­tween New Zealand and China are to be added to this list. A fur­ther de­vel­op­ment was the launch of the Chi­nese

ver­sion of Ar­rival mag­a­zine, it is now a bilin­gual travel mag­a­zine dis­trib­uted at all New Zealand in­ter­na­tional air­ports. Tar­get­ing one mil­lion read­ers each year, it is quar­terly pub­lished, and the cir­cu­la­tion is 300,000 copies per an­num. The news­pa­per and mag­a­zine of­fer sig­nif­i­cant mar­ket­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties for busi­ness want­ing to reach in-bound Chi­nese tourist and New Zealand Chi­nese re­turn­ing home for hol­i­days.

The big banks, ANZ, ASB, BNZ, West­pac and HSBC are all Chi­nese Her­ald ad­ver­tis­ers, as are the telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions com­pa­nies, Spark, Voda­fone, 2degrees and smart­phone brands Sam­sung and Huawei. As one can imag­ine re­tail­ers love the news­pa­per with Farm­ers, Noel Leem­ing and Rebel Sports just a few who have ben­e­fited from com­mu­ni­cat­ing with lo­cal Chi­nese cus­tomers in their own lan­guage.

Real Es­tate has been an­other area of suc­cess and as James Chan, in­ter­na­tional sales di­rec­tor Bay­ley’s Real Es­tate says af­ter ad­ver­tis­ing with the Chi­nese Her­ald for 10 years, “Our in­ter­na­tional divi­sion has en­joyed tremen­dous suc­cess and ex­po­sure in mar­ket­ing our prop­er­ties via Chi­nese Her­ald to both lo­cal New Zealand and off­shore in­vestors.”

Sim­i­lar en­dorse­ments have come from New Zealand Post, Cathay Pa­cific and Air New Zealand, with lux­ury ve­hi­cle deal­ers (Lexus, BMW, Mercedes Benz) be­ing some of the most vo­cal in their praise. Craig Innes, dealer prin­ci­pal, Mercedes Benz North Shore, who has been ad­ver­tis­ing with the Chi­nese Her­ald since 2012, says, “It’s gone re­ally well. We’ve seen a lot of growth, to the point where we were dealer of the year in 2016, which was a great re­sult and we can at­tribute a lot of that suc­cess to what we’ve done with the Chi­nese Her­ald. Mov­ing for­ward we look for­ward to con­tinue that re­la­tion­ship with print and ex­pand it through into dig­i­tal.”

The multi-plat­form ap­proach is one close to Lili Wang’s heart. Ini­tially there was only a weekly news­pa­per. To­day the Chi­nese Her­ald is pub­lished four times a week (Tues­day to Satur­day). With 10,000 copies per is­sue and 120+ de­liv­ery spots New Zealand wide, the pa­per is of­fered free to the com­mu­nity. It’s avail­able at ho­tels, restau­rants, banks, air­ports and su­per­mar­kets. Once a pa­per is col­lected, it will likely be read by at least three or four peo­ple in a fam­ily or a busi­ness, and read­er­ship is es­ti­mated to be around 150,000 per week.

Cnzher­ald.com – the joint ven­ture be­tween NZME (Pub­lisher of NZ Her­ald) and Chi­nese Her­ald, now has over 120,000+ Unique Users weekly with over 350,000+ weekly page views with 70 per­cent of these com­ing from New Zealand but an im­por­tant 30 per­cent from over­seas, a great tie in for Chi­nese lan­guage vis­i­tors.

Mean­while, Wechat is the num­ber one so­cial net­work choice for Chi­nese na­tion­als. New Zealand and China have par­al­lel uni­verses when it comes to so­cial me­dia, since Face­book, Youtube, Twit­ter and Skype are cur­rently blocked in China.

9 in 10 Chi­nese liv­ing in New Zealand who have a smart­phone, have a Wechat ac­count. Wechat users spend an av­er­age of 40 min­utes a day on the plat­form, with 55 per­cent check­ing in more than 10 times. The Chi­nese Her­ald ver­i­fied of­fi­cial Wechat ac­count, es­tab­lished since 2015, now has more than 40,000+ sub­scribers, 250,000 Unique Vis­i­tors and 350,000+ Page Views Monthly. The Chi­nese Her­ald pub­lishes four in-depth orig­i­nal ar­ti­cles a day on the plat­form, seven days a week, of­fer­ing mul­ti­ple ways for the lo­cal Chi­nese com­mu­nity to con­nect. There are al­ready 170,000 lo­cal users of Wechat in New Zealand.

As Wendy Jef­fer­son, mar­ket­ing ex­ec­u­tive Con­ti­nen­tal Cars (BMW) ad­vises, “It is very im­por­tant for us to find ways of com­mu­ni­cat­ing with the Chi­nese com­mu­nity and we have found a lot of ben­e­fits in deal­ing with the Chi­nese Her­ald, who have in­tro­duced us to new ways of do­ing busi­ness with Wechat and their web­site.”

“The Chi­nese mar­ket in New Zealand is unique”, says Chi­nese Her­ald gen­eral man­ager, Christina Yu. “un­like those Chi­nese com­mu­ni­ties in Aus­tralia, Canada or other im­mi­grant des­ti­na­tions, NZ Chi­nese im­mi­grants are more ed­u­cated and re­laxed, they en­joy New Zealand’s qual­ity life­style and are will­ing to spend and in­vest more in New Zealand mar­ket. New Zealand is home to more than 170,000 Chi­nese with 70 per­cent of them liv­ing in Auck­land ac­cord­ing to the 2013 cen­sus. The real growth has only hap­pened re­cently and the 2018 cen­sus fig­ures to be re­leased soon are likely to show a higher than ex­pected rise in Chi­nese im­mi­grants.

“We pro­vide mul­ti­ple me­dia plat­forms to serve the Chi­nese com­mu­nity,” says Wang, “Un­like most Ki­wis, Chi­nese peo­ple liv­ing in New Zealand rely upon eth­nic news ser­vices as their main source of news and there is a strong cul­tural trust of their own me­dia, which makes the eth­nic me­dia a very ef­fec­tive ad­ver­tis­ing medium. Ad­ver­tis­ing in Chi­nese Her­ald ex­poses the ad­ver­tis­ers to a sub­stan­tial cross-sec­tion of the lo­cal Chi­nese com­mu­nity, which is the most sig­nif­i­cant, af­flu­ent and in­flu­en­tial mi­grant group in New Zealand.”

The Chi­nese Her­ald has dis­cov­ered that some of the great­est re­turns have been for clients in the real es­tate, cars, bank­ing and fi­nance, lux­ury goods, mo­bile phones, health prod­ucts, su­per­mar­kets and travel in­dus­tries.

Chi­nese Her­ald has been work­ing closely with New­mar­ket and Par­nell Busi­ness As­so­ci­a­tions, they pro­vide work­shops and sem­i­nar to lo­cal busi­nesses who would like to tap into the Chi­nese mar­ket, shar­ing up­dated con­sumer trends and ef­fec­tive Chi­nese mar­ket­ing strate­gies. With its lo­cally em­ployed Chi­nese speak­ing staff the Chi­nese Her­ald is able to de­velop me­dia and mar­ket­ing strate­gies for big ad­ver­tis­ing agen­cies, con­sider cul­tural fac­tors and write in Chi­nese rather than trans­late. The abil­ity to help mar­keters avoid cul­tural faux pas is es­sen­tial in this mar­ket.

In the three years since the change of own­er­ship, staff lev­els have dou­bled with an in­take of Chi­nese speak­ing staff that un­der­stand the Chi­nese lan­guage and cul­ture es­sen­tial for the com­mu­ni­ca­tion re­quire­ments of a com­mu­nity news pur­veyor.

New Zealand’s Chi­nese pop­u­la­tion is one of the high­est growth sec­tors of the econ­omy. The Chi­nese com­mu­nity in New Zealand have strong con­nec­tions to their coun­try of ori­gin and con­se­quently pre­fer ac­cess­ing new through their own lan­guage me­dia. Mar­keters who ig­nore this will be miss­ing out on a rapidly grow­ing mar­ket op­por­tu­nity.

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