What is Xiaohongshu, or Little Red Book

People who know about China’s history in 1960s to 1970s may know “Xiaohongshu”, or “Little Red Book”, the nick name of the book “Quotations from Chairman Mao”, which was the most circulated book in China during Cultural Revolution (1966-1976).

However, the “Little Red Book” we are talking about today has nothing to do with Chairman Mao. It is a thriving lifestyle community platform founded by Mao Wenchao and Qu Fang on 06/06/2013. If one would say there are similarities between the two Little Red Books, then it must be the fact that both are/were phenomenal popular in China!

Brief Introduction

According to the data relased on its official website, by July 2019, Xiaohongshu has got over 300 million registered users and 70% of these users are post-90s. Three billion impressions are created on Xiaohongshu daily via a wide variety of media, including photos, texts, and short videos. These touch on all areas of lifestyle, such as cosmetics and beauty, fashion, food, travel, entertainment, reading, fitness, and childcare.

Xiaohongshu has always been the most downloaded APP in IOS APP Store

Through artificial intelligence and machine learning, Xiaohongshu tailors content recommendations to individual users, incubating new consumer trends. More than 20,000 brands have community accounts on Xiaohongshu. The platform hosts nearly 10,000 third-party e-commerce merchants and offers more than 100,000 different products.

Positioning of Xiaohongshu

Xiaohongshu has been in development for over 6 years since it went online in 2013. From the cold start, when it only served female users who went shopping in Hong Kong, to a platform for female users who were interested in purchasing goods overseas, and then a platform for those who were interested in cross-border e-commerce, it has grown into today’s sharing community e-commerce platform that focuses on sharing lifestyles and cuts into all aspects of users’ life, just as suggested by its slogan “Mark My Life”.

Now Xiaohongshu mainly provides young females with a community communication platform that can share 18 topics such as skin care and beauty, fashion wear, celebrities, etc. At the same time, it provides content services for users who do not have clear shopping goals to help them make shopping decisions and develop consumer demand. The platform boasts an e-commerce model that connects consumers and commodities with content, enabling consumers to realize consumption through content suggestions and guidance.

User Portrait

  1. General data

According to the data on Xiaohongshu’s official website, youngsters use Xiaohongshu to share lifestyle, explore inspirations of life and know about consumption information. It has:

300 millionRegistered users
80%Female users
60%IOS users
60%Users in Tier 1 and Tier 2 cities
70%Post-90s users
90%Users get to know about brand/product information via Xiaohongshu
200K+Contents generated every day

According to the user profile analysis of Xiaohongshu released by iResearch in October 2018:

  • There are much more female users than male users on Xiaohongshu, and female users are the main force;
  • Most of the users are born after 1985 and 1990, and 24-35 years old users account for the largest proportion, accounting for over 60%;
  • Users are mainly distributed in Tier 1 and Tier 2 cities. In terms of provinces, Guangdong has the highest proportion.
  • Hobbies of the users are mainly online shopping, life, information, and the user’s consumption level is medium to high.
Gender distribution of Xiaohongshu users
Age distribution of Xiaohongshu users
Geographic distribution of Xiaohongshu users

2) User characteristics

  • Basic attributes: Most of the users are well educated young women in Tier 1 and Tier 2 cities aging between 25 and 35.
  • Consumption characteristics: Most of the users love to enjoy life, shop overseas, travel, and take photos to share interest.
  • Behavioral characteristics:
    • Consumption behavior: shopping, cross-border shopping, travel, cuisine dinnig, etc.
    • Social behavior: Enjoy taking photos and videos to share lifestyle, recommending delicious food and fun events.
  • Psychological characteristics: like to share personal lifestyle, hope to get attention, pursue quality life, like to show personality

3) Users’ needs and solutions

The users of Xiaohongshu are mainly young women. More and more post-95s are flocking to Xiaohongshu, and the user group of Xiaohongshu tends to be younger and younger.

And young women after the 90s and 95s hope to share their personal lifestyle records while showing their personality and gaining attention. It happens that the Xiaohongshu sharing community meets the needs of this group of people. Xiaohongshu provides users with texts, pictures, and video notes to share their lifestyles, as well as thematic discussions on various topics such as beauty, food, and travel to meet their social needs of getting attention.

At the same time, Xiaohongshu also provides high-quality and rich content services for users who do not have a clear purchase target, and provides users with a channel for screening and comparison. For the question of whether a certain product is worthwhile to buy, whether it is suitable for themselves, Xiaohongshu solves such kind of concerns via its high-quality content by helping users make shopping decisions and develope consumption needs. With its unique e-commerce model that connect content to products, it solves user’s needs and monetise the content.

We will discuss how to leverage Xiaohongshu to promote your brand/product in China in our next blog article. Meanwhile, Digipanda marketing has launched a Xiaohongshu based service that will help clients to have its own brand account on Xiaohongshu and manage that account on behalf of the clients. For more details of the service, please reach out to us by writing to info@digipanda.co.uk.

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