Douyin Group has established a new entertainment division that will consolidate the company’s broadcasting of live sports, concerts, and other entertainment businesses.
Chen Duye, former vice-president of Ocean Engine, Douyin Group’s official marketing services brand, has been appointed chief of the entertainment department. Broadcasts of live events such as the World Cup are reportedly Chen’s top priority in the officially outlined OKRs of the new division.
Douyin has been developing its live sports broadcasting in the last two years, most recently securing the rights to broadcast the upcoming Asian Games, a major athletic event set to kick off in September. Last year Douyin became the first social media platform in China to broadcast the FIFA Men’s World Cup live, racking up a total of 10.6 billion views across the tournament. Concerts from stars like Stephanie Sun and Andy Lau are also part of Douyin’s live broadcasting offerings, with Andy Lau’s online concert last year attracting 350 million Cantopop lovers to the platform.
Douyin has also been making in-roads in driving engagement by connecting live events to the daily lives of users via local life services. During the Men’s World Cup last year, for example, Douyin launched a campaign encouraging users to experience offline activities through group purchasing and set up a food delivery pilot across nine cities, which pushed the platform’s GMV from food delivery in a single month to 80-90 million in November and December last year. According to global digital sports consultancy Mailman, this strategy is about creating a “seamless experience that spans content consumption and actual consumption”.
Variety shows, a genre in China that encompasses game shows, talent shows, and talk shows, is another pillar of Douyin’s entertainment business. “Nice to Meet You”, a down-to-earth reality show in which celebrities travel and share their life stories, has been streaming on Douyin since 2021. Variety shows reportedly provide 40% of revenue for long video platforms despite only occupying 5-8% of the content volume, making them an investment with great returns for Douyin’s burgeoning entertainment division.