C-pop sensation Tia Lee (also known as Lee Yu Fen) has made a comeback in the music industry after a three-year hiatus, and with her new album, she has kickstarted a global gender equality campaign called #EmpowerHer. The female empowerment campaign aims to raise awareness and support for women-centric charitable organisations worldwide.
Dropped on YouTube and Weibo in the first week of December 2022, her “Goodbye Princess” music video garnered a whopping 30 million views on YouTube in less than six days of its premiere. Leading up to the release of Lee’s new single, she additionally launched a six-part animation series set in well-known fairy tale stories to spread messages of female empowerment.
Through both the short animations and music video, Lee’s comeback symbolises her breaking free from her “princess” image and empowers the women around her to do the same.
“Negative stereotypes continue to stand between women and their dreams—especially when it comes to Asian women. With ‘Goodbye Princess’, I am trying to express that women should have the freedom to set their own priorities and choose their own direction in life,” Lee stated. “I want to share my personal experience and let people know that traditional and negative stereotypes still exist, and they are not conducive to the pursuit of happiness for women in general.”
Reinforcing the song’s theme of female empowerment, the #EmpowerHer campaign will pledge monetary donations to charities with each view accumulated from the pop star’s “Goodbye Princess” music video. So far, selected charities include Women in Music (USA), Beatz by Girlz (Europe, Africa, Americas), Teen’s Key, and Daughters of Tomorrow (Singapore), with more partnerships potentially on the horizon.
At present, Lee’s comeback is making waves on both Western and Chinese social media. Not only has the hashtag “Goodbye Princess” amassed over 300,000 views on microblogging platform Weibo, but the song itself has also generated an entire Tiktok dance trend led by Filipina Tiktoker Hannah Balaney.
Prior to the early 2010s, the typical female image of Chinese women in advertisements consisted of wives or mothers with no professional roles. Nowadays, however, Chinese millennials and Gen-Z expect a completely different approach. Due to the increase in feminism in Chinese marketing, women are being shown more as independent personalities.
With feminism in China currently gaining momentum, Lee’s female empowerment campaign provides representation for women of all ages and reflects the change in Gen-Z and millennial Chinese women’s values when it comes to career development or building a family. Brands using feminism in their marketing campaigns, therefore, can help attract a new audience and customers represented by independent women.