Seeding 101: Xiaohongshu launches marketing certification

Unlocking business growth through social commerce doesn’t have to be shrouded in mystery. In fact, the marketing gurus at China’s leading lifestyle-sharing platform Xiaohongshu are making sure it isn’t.

Xiaohongshu’s official marketing school, which launched in September, is now rolling out a professional qualification for marketing based on “seeding” (种草), or peer-to-peer recommendation. A form of social media influencing based largely on Key Opinion Consumers (KOCs), seeding is a recognised marketing strategy and pillar of social commerce in China.

The new online course from Xiaohongshu features modules on trend recognition, product application, and practical marketing scenarios. Once candidates have completed the free course and passed an exam costing 300 RMB, they will earn the title of certified “Xiaohongshu Seeding Marketer”. 50 companies and around 1,000 people have already passed the certification since its launch last week.  

Newly minted seeding experts can also join Xiaohongshu’s official community of Seeding Marketers to expand their networks and master social commerce through first-hand tips. In future, there will be the opportunity to upgrade the qualification from entry-level to mid- and high-level Seeding Marketers and unlock further benefits.

This initiative comes as Chinese authorities crank up regulation of high-profile influencers and the public image of commercial livestreaming KOLs like Li Jiaqi has taken a nose dive. It may be time to go back to where social commerce began, meaning authentic product reviews from consumers with a modest online following. Guided by tried and tested marketing strategies verified by Xiaohongshu’s marketing school, there is no reason brands can’t win in this changing landscape.


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