PR In China: the Latest Hits (and Misses)

Next week I will be posting the second part of the series Tech PR in Asia: Myths and Misconceptions.

The first post was about the distorted view many have about Asian (and Chinese, in particular) media.  As I said, those who are not savvy in this area might think that China is a very buttoned down place, and that the government pulls all the strings.

This week I share a few articles that support and refute this perception.

Last night the Daily Show reported that the Chinese government is clamping down on a journalism scourge that confuses citizens and can poison their minds – namely wordplay, that’s right, puns. Needless to say, Jon Stewart had great fun with this, see the clip above.

Despite the heavy (and humorless) hand, if you think the state of media there leaves no room for PR stunts, viral marketing, and click bait, guess again.

Carmen Ren a PR rock star who just completed her internship here, shared this article.  It covered dirty tricks of marketers and PR seekers, including the excerpt:

But the rapid spread of such soft advertising indicates a bigger problem: news websites are putting their traffic before the authenticity of their content…

Hmmm, traffic before authenticity? That slippery slope does not sound so foreign, does it?

Finally, in the “hits” category, is a nice piece that Glenn Leibowitz (who leads McKinsey’s external communications in Greater China) wrote on LinkedIn: 10 Things you should Know about Chinese Media.

It covers some of the same ground as my “Myths” post and adds other important facts, such as:

There are three “flavors” of written Chinese. In Mainland China, media use the “simplified” Chinese character set, which contains many characters that differ substantially in how they’re written in Hong Kong and Taiwan, which use the “traditional”, or “complex”, character set… Besides being incomprehensible, content that is presented in the “wrong” character set betrays a lack of cultural sensitivity and basic knowledge of what works in what market. 

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