There is no disputing that Japan, China, and South Korea have huge communities of investors and developers in the blockchain and virtual currency industries, and that they have a huge influence on the global market, which is a common understanding among blockchain projects worldwide. However, due to cultural and language barriers, it is extremely difficult to accurately understand the situation in each of these three countries and implement appropriate strategies, and very few projects have achieved that.
In this article, we would like to share some simple insights to help you better understand each of the mentioned markets.
First of all, on a very basic level, these three countries, which are often equated by the Western world, have very different linguistic and cultural backgrounds, and fundamentally there is no common trend in terms of projects, services, regulations, or communities surrounding the crypto industry, and each is developing in its own way.
First, let’s look at China. Alibaba holds the world’s largest number of patents related to blockchain technology*1, and there are also high quality global-level researches and development in blockchain technology, as well as virtual currencies. It also boasts an overwhelming number of projects*2, products, media, platforms, and other services. Therefore, in marketing, it is essential to choose what to use and how to use it among the overflow of information and resources.
People in China are particularly mobile-friendly among Asian countries, and they actively use social media against a backdrop of mistrust of traditional media due to strict information control. In addition, they have very strong kinship ties and are wary of people who are not family members or close friends, which is one of the reasons why social media is so influential as a source of viral content based on individual relationships.
There are many general portal sites in China, and the number of blockchain and virtual currency media is overwhelming, compared to other countries. Each media outlet has its own political stance as well as the characteristics of the information it deals with, so it is necessary to choose carefully, when using the media for promotion, taking into account the nature of the information to be introduced.
Regarding the crypto community in particular, they have formed a diverse communities on WeChat. It is similar to the situation with numerous crypto communities on Telegram, but since WeChat has a limit of 500 people per group, there are countless smaller and more fragmented communities. Among them, there are community leaders who manage multiple communities and they have a certain amount of influence.
Weibo is a service similar to Twitter. It is popular among the global crypto community, its users are relatively young, and the information they share is more casual than financial or business-related. Weibo is not often used as a main source of crypto-related information. In the past, when ICOs were popular on Wechat and Weibo, groups that dealt with crypto-related information were banned by the authorities. In the past, Wechat and Weibo were used by the authorities to ban groups that dealt with crypto-related information*3.
Community platforms, such as 链节点*4 run by major media companies are also popular. The community platform is not only a forum like Reddit or Bitcointalk, but also a huge community platform that offers events, Q&A, basic knowledge about blockchain, and professional tutorials. There are many such platforms in addition to 链节点, and through these communities, people can discuss and interact with each other while learning the right knowledge about blockchain, contributing to raising the level of knowledge and education in the industry to a higher level.
In China, likely to the trend in the global community, Bitcoin and Ethereum, as the major projects, are highly popular. PoW currencies are especially popular as China has a pioneering position in the mining space globally. Projects from China such as EOS, TRON, VeChain and tokens based on them are also popular. In addition, Polkadot is extremely popular these days, and there will be a great deal of interest in projects launched on Polkadot in the future. China is also home to a number of world-famous funds specializing in crypto, such as Node capital, Fenbushi capital, and FBG capital, so the investment trends, set by such funds is also under the focus. The projects that the funds are paying attention to and investing in tend to get more attention from the community as well.
DeFi has experienced a global boom in 2020, and China is no exception, and is expected to continue to attract attention in 2021. In 2021, the cross-chain space will also be a major theme to watch.
To summarize :
- Social media and word-of-mouth are the main sources of information in China.
- It is important to understand the market, select the right channels, and use methods that will active the word-of-mouth about the project.
- There are issues, needed to be taken into account, that are unique to the Chinese market, such as regulations and politics.
The links below provide an overview of market trends in China and Korea, as well as information on cryptomedia in English-speaking countries.
*1 The Current State of Blockchain Patents (https://kisspatent.com/blockchain-patents-study)
*2 Nation leads world in blockchain projects (http://www.china.org.cn/business/2019-04/02/content_74636929.htm)
*3 腾讯回应多个区块链公号被封：涉嫌发布ICO等炒币信息，永久封停 (http://news.china.com.cn/2018-08/22/content_59655824.htm)
*4 链节点 (https://www.chainnode.com/)