We can see something other than “red envelopes”.
Whale Merchant (ID: bizwhale) original author | Sanwu, Hu Duzhi
The past CCTV Spring Festival Gala “Red Envelope Feast”, Jingdong is the protagonist. So far, before the Internet market capitalization
The top five main players are worse than Meituan and Pinduoduo.
In fact, since 2014, this Chinese New Year’s Eve must-have column has witnessed the ups and downs of Internet giants. The distribution of red envelopes for the opening year is not only an important display of the status and strength of large manufacturers, but also engraved with the “imprint” of the era of game between industry giants.
The changes in the industry mapped by the Spring Festival Gala
Since the launch of the Spring Festival Gala in 1984, sponsors have become the “killer app” for brands to break the circle.
From old consumer goods companies such as Combas Watches, Sichuan Tuo Qujiu, Midea, and Mengzhilan, to Tencent, Alibaba, Baidu, Kuaishou, Douyin, and now JD.com and other Internet giants. The popularity of the competition has not diminished, and the history of industry changes behind it also confirms the vigorous development of China’s economy.
From 1984 to 1993, it was overseas brands that became champions. It was not until 1994 that China Bicycle finally began to sponsor, which is the first combination of Chinese manufacturing and Chinese brands.
Immediately followed by Tuo Pai, Kong Fu Family Wine, and Qin Chi Tequ for several years because they snatched the king. Around 1996, domestic electronics consumption began, and BBK VCD founded by Duan Yongping won the championship. And Duan Yongping’s method of “holding high and beating high” to buy brand exposure has been tried and tested repeatedly.
After the millennium, Harbin Pharmaceutical Group and Midea Group entered the championship competition. Among them, Midea’s electrical appliances have dominated the list for 10 consecutive years, and these 10 years also echo the “golden age” of real estate.
In this way, in 2014, the Internet giant Tencent joined the battlefield, opening a new chapter of the competition for the champion.
At that time, Tencent was not as low-key as it is now. In order to compete with Alipay for users, Tencent threw 100 million yuan and raided Alipay’s hinterland with red envelope play at the 2014 Spring Festival Gala. Subsequently, WeChat Pay activated more than 8 million users and allowed more than 30 million users to bind bank cards. These key measures have laid a solid foundation for Tencent’s future financial landscape.
Seeing him rise high, how can Alipay sit still. In 2016, Ali won the main sponsor of the Spring Festival Gala at the cost of more than 5 times the cost of his opponent, and launched gameplay such as password red envelopes and jiwufu. Until the 2018 Spring Festival, Alibaba continued to be the sponsor of the Spring Festival Gala. However, users were tired of the game, so Alipay distributed more than 1 billion yuan in cash red envelopes, emptied 1,000 shopping carts, and created an annual buzzword: throwing money.
But in fact, the money-burning games of WeChat and Alipay have buried hidden dangers for their later development. Under the national policy of anti-monopoly and common prosperity, Ant was stopped before listing, and Tencent’s financial territory was expanded to the point where it could not be ignored, and then it was spun off and supervised.
However, the money-burning war of the Spring Festival Gala has never stopped. After the mobile phones brought up by the two payment giants shake and grab red envelopes. In 2019, Baidu also participated in the battle, achieving 20.8 billion interactions with Baidu APP red envelopes with 900 million yuan.
It’s just that this impressive figure did not last long. According to the monitoring of the Guojin Research and Innovation Center, by February 9, the retention rate of new users of mobile phone Baidu was only 2%, and the financial and mobile business did not have a major breakthrough in the distribution of red envelopes.
In the era of short videos, Kuaishou and Douyin each led the way for a year. In 2019, Kuaishou, which is trapped inside and outside, launched the K3 campaign, vowing to sprint 300 million DAU. Subsequently, Kuaishou spent a lot of money to win the 2020 Spring Festival Gala red envelope project. In the end, Kuaishou co-founder Cheng Yixiao summed up the K3 battle as follows: “I am not satisfied with the result, but I am satisfied with the process of achieving the result.”
At the beginning of 2021, Douyin distributed red envelopes for the Spring Festival Gala of that year, hoping to make a key breakthrough in Douyin e-commerce. It’s just that TikTok quickly found out that it backfired. The development of Douyin e-commerce cannot rely solely on traffic assault, and the user mentality and click and viewing time required by Douyin need to be mined separately.
In addition, Douyin exclusively titled the Liaoning Spring Festival Gala this year, using sketches, songs and dances, and live broadcasts to interpret social responsibilities such as rural revitalization. It can be seen that its anxiety about sinking, traffic, and enthusiasm for responding to the call.
Back to the championship competition of this year’s CCTV Spring Festival Gala, the first place was the traditional e-commerce giant JD.com. Throughout 2021, JD.com has undergone organizational restructuring, and Xu Lei, rotating CEO of JD.com Mall, has been promoted to group president. Its logistics and health companies have been listed, and JD Technology has followed suit. After the strengthening of supervision at the end of the year and the ups and downs of Tencent’s withdrawal, JD.com finally has to face the assessment of this Spring Festival Gala.
According to relevant reports, the project was led by Xu Lei, president of JD.com Group, and Xin Lijun, CEO of JD.com Retail, and 8 project teams were specially set up internally to promote relevant work.
Before its debut, perhaps out of concern about user engagement, JD.com had scheduled the event from January 24 to February 15, that is, from the pre-Spring Festival to the Lantern Festival. And set up simple game sessions, such as shaking to receive prizes, grabbing red envelopes, etc.
Or JD.com does not plan to fight out of the circle, but its ability in scientific and technological hard power, new retention rate, sinking market share and other aspects will inevitably be naked in front of consumers, businesses, investors, and peers.
CCTV’s Spring Festival and later years are all old enterprises, Internet giants, and they have thrown money to compete for “fat meat”.
The reason is mainly due to the impact of enterprise traffic anxiety, sinking demand, and responding to the call for common prosperity.
As a show with a sense of ceremony, the Spring Festival Gala is open to all. According to the Guojin Securities Research Report, the global audience size of the CCTV Spring Festival Gala increased from 1.03 billion in 2016 to 1.23 billion in 2020. By 2021, the comprehensive rating of CCTV’s Spring Festival Gala will reach 23.26%, 3 percentage points higher than the same period last year, and the comprehensive viewership share will reach 68%.
This is an opportunity for Internet companies that are currently saturated with traffic in first- and second-tier cities and urgently need to get a piece of the sinking market. The sinking market is the dense area of the Spring Festival Gala fans, so Internet companies have come up with “tricks”, on the basis of sending red envelopes and collecting Fuka, changing tricks to mobilize the participation of users in the sinking market and alleviate traffic anxiety.
This kind of national Internet play has indeed made enterprises gain a wave of goodwill. It’s just that judging from the past data, the wool party rushing at double speed will also leave the platform at double speed.
For example, in 2016, Alipay wanted to join the social scuffle and harvested 1.1 billion pairs of friends through the Spring Festival Gala. However, normal activities lack refined operations, and there is no “data differentiation between new and old users”, which has caused the consequences of burning money inefficiently. With the passage of time, the popularity of the Spring Festival Gala gradually dissipated, and the social relationships connected by the Spring Festival Gala were also lost at a speed visible to the naked eye.
Subsequently, Baidu increased daily activity from 160 million to 300 million with the Spring Festival Gala, and Kuaishou conquered the K3 campaign, and the daily activity of Douyin’s main site reached 580 million. It’s just that the user stickiness is insufficient in the later stage, and all have been lost.
However, the fact that the Spring Festival Gala can lead Internet companies to sprint to the peak of traffic is still an indisputable fact. Moreover, to some extent, the Spring Festival Gala also needs the blessing of Internet companies.
After all, every year, there are people clamoring that the Spring Festival Gala is boring, lacks fun and innovation, and has a weak sense of interaction. The existence of Internet companies can alleviate the embarrassment of the lack of “tricks” at the Spring Festival Gala to a certain extent. Through fresh gameplay and financial support, they add a festive atmosphere and attract national attention.
On the other hand, brands in various categories born in the Internet era will continue to issue coupons and conduct lucky draws during the Spring Festival Gala, which can strengthen the emotional connection with consumers and enhance the entertainment of the Spring Festival Gala.
These gameplay make many users in the sinking market happy. Their participation in the Spring Festival Gala has also extended from TV viewing, mobile phone and Internet viewing to participating in various red envelope activities. This change in lifestyle requires CCTV Spring Festival Gala to accurately capture the trend and wind direction, and Internet companies must “increase horsepower” in technology.
In recent years, the Spring Festival Gala has been applied to VR and AR. As early as 2017, the Spring Festival Gala used VR live broadcasting. Later, in 2021, Jay Chou’s song “Mojito”, under the use of XR, VR, AR and other technologies, showed the interesting connection from the coastal city to the studio. It can be seen that whether it is a virtual character performance or an AR scene change, the audience can enjoy an audio-visual feast. Behind this is the Internet era, the changes given by technology to the Spring Festival Gala.
This time, JD.com seized the “olive branch” of the Spring Festival Gala, stabilized the computing power infrastructure such as JD Cloud, and optimized the data center resources, system architecture stability, and business system scaling and deployment capabilities, in order to bring consumers a smooth interaction and shopping experience.
At the same time, JD.com will be like Tencent, Alibaba, Baidu, Douyin, and Kuaishou to explore the needs of users in the sinking market and iterate its own products.
Spit turns into influence
Over the past 38 years, the Spring Festival Gala has not stopped advancing with the times, but since the formation of the public opinion position of netizens after the millennium, the complaining tone of “the Spring Festival Gala is not as good as one year” has almost become the “main theme” after the end of each Spring Festival Gala. The post-00s may not have the “memory of the times” of the Spring Festival Gala, but it does not prevent them from participating in it and are happy to investigate the high praise rate in the official name of the diss, and the same is true this year.
The “red envelope” benefits given to hundreds of millions of viewers by Internet giants cannot smooth out the gullies in which everyone complains about the Spring Festival Gala, but instead “complain” continuously, indicating that topicality, attention, and dissemination can be transformed into the “influence” needed at the commercial level. Objectively speaking, no matter who will be the director, it is difficult to reconcile. After all, today is different, more than 30 years ago, the public opinion method was single, the previous generation of audiences has a preconceived idea, and the “aftertaste” of the past is always worth remembering.
A new generation of young people, as Internet natives, lives in a more open and diversified spiritual civilization world, and the “beauty, good” they pursue is different from their elders, and it is not easy to be pleased, so a Spring Festival Gala to take into account the preferences of the four generations of “old, middle, young and young”, is destined to be difficult, not to mention the Spring Festival Gala as a spiritual feast of Chinese New Year’s Eve, but also to take into account the transmission of positive social energy, somewhat with certain “historical baggage”.
“Spitting” does not prevent “the Spring Festival Gala is worth thousands of dollars”, and its commercial value is very recognized by traditional brands and technology companies. Sun Xianhong, vice president of Mengniu Group, said: “Advertising at the CCTV Spring Festival Gala is the most cost-effective in terms of input and output ratio. “However, in the era of pure brand advertising, performance tracking is not possible. Until the “red envelope” interaction of Internet giants becomes a tradition, the corresponding business value assessment becomes more intuitive.
According to official sources from JD.com, during the 2022 CCTV Spring Festival Gala, a record 1.5 billion yuan of red envelopes were distributed through 7 rounds of interaction, and the number of interactions in the entire night was 69.1 billion. It is worth noting that compared with the same period last year, there was a decline in the number of red envelope interactions for the first time in the history of the Spring Festival Gala.
According to external information in previous years, the number of red envelope interactions at the 2019-2021 Spring Festival Gala was 20.8 billion, 63.9 billion and 70.3 billion respectively. Titanium media reported that “the decline in the number of red envelope interactions is due to both Jingdong factors and Spring Festival Gala.” This year’s Jingdong red envelope, each round of interaction can only be grabbed three times. Jingdong’s measure is to ensure the security of cloud resources through throttling, and second, to convert temporary users brought by the Spring Festival Gala red envelope into long-term users, so that money can be spent on the blade. ”
This also objectively reflects that the Internet era has moved from the incremental era to the stock era. Looking forward to the Spring Festival Gala in the next five years, will the “meta-universe” hard technology be the “takeover” after the Internet giants? At present, there is no affirmative answer, but at least in the form of the content display of the current Spring Festival Gala, there is already a little taste.
The Spring Festival Gala “Carnival” of Internet Giants