- More and more sport fans are turning to short-video platforms, in part down to their partnerships with high-profile global competitions.
- Kuaishou leveraged the enthusiasm for the Olympics with a unique video showcasing a range of sports through the art of papercutting.
- The video, and the supportive message it sent, gained high traction online.
The Olympics is in full swing and Chinese viewers at home are passionately rooting for their athletes. Since the Opening Ceremony, the Olympics has consistently appeared among the trending topics on Weibo and Douyin (Chinese TikTok) and the latest news and medal information can easily be accessed on all of China’s top social media platforms.
Chinese users turn to social media for Olympic news
Short-form video platforms have become an online community for those interested in sports. According to Su Hua, the CEO of video platform Kuaishou, the platform is home to nearly 50,000 high-quality sports creators and more than 150 million sports lovers.
Chinese platforms have been fast to leverage the several high-profile sports competitions that have been taking place this summer in order to attract the growing number of online sports fans.
Kuaishou obtained the rights to stream the Copa America to its 417 million monthly active users. The platform signed a deal with China Media Group, the company which owns the country’s main state media outlets, for the broadcast rights to the Tokyo 2020 Olympics and the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics.
Social review platform Xiaohongshu has also obtained a partnership with China Media Group. Official sports media accounts and reporters that are part of the group will offer exclusive content about the Tokyo Olympics on the platform. In addition, all members of the Chinese National Women’s Football Team have joined Xiaohongshu to share football-related videos during the Olympics.
Social media platforms have got behind China’s 431-person team of competitors with encouraging messages and campaigns.
Kuaishou highlights athletes’ passion through papercutting video
Athletes have suffered constant setbacks and uncertainty with the pandemic and the Olympics being postponed a year for the first time in history. In these challenging circumstances, Kuaishou aimed to inspire and motivate athletes to help them reach their goals.
The platform created a unique video combining Chinese traditional crafts with enthusiasm for China’s Olympic team. Kuaishou’s advertising studio We Studio worked with 梦幻手绘, a young art student and influencer on the platform, to produce a video campaign made from papercutting. Each scene is delicately crafted through the Chinese folk art, which uses paper to create various images.
The video fuses Chinese culture, such as background music in an ancient style, with that of the Olympic host country. The scenes were inspired by the Japanese art style ‘ukiyo-e’ and include traditional temples and Mount Fuji.
The team produced 480 character drawings, 600 paper cuttings and moved objects 2,214 times. During the 20 days of shooting, 3,500 stop motion animations were captured. The end of the video documents the intricate process of producing the paper cuttings and animations.
Kuaishou highlights its confidence in China’s athletes
The campaign features multiple sports that China is competing in with words of encouragement for the athletes:
Kuaishou highlighted its support and confidence in the national teams, saying:
The video also includes the phrase “奥利给” (aòlìgèi), a popular buzzword among China’s young netizens, which is used to encourage others and means “hooray” or “keep going”.
Video gains high engagement on Weibo and Kuaishou
The hashtag “#Guangdong post-00 uses paper cutting to make an excellent video” (#广东00后用纸剪出大片#) hit 32 million views and the video has 1.1 million views on Weibo. Many netizens were impressed by the quality of work made by such a young artist. The campaign was also posted by We Studio and the artist on Kuaishou and gained over a million views on the platform.
As part of their efforts to pull in users to their Olympic coverage, Kuaishou has also updated their app logo for the competition and has created a special section on the platform for Olympic content.
Kuaishou blends Chinese heritage with Olympic enthusiasm
Although the Olympics is without an audience this year, Kuaishou wanted to show athletes that they nonetheless had a huge support base cheering for them back at home.
The platform appealed to consumers’ interest in traditional Chinese art forms to develop a creative campaign that also integrated elements of Japanese culture. They leveraged the enthusiasm for the Olympics and support for Chinese athletes to gain a wide viewership across social media. By doing so, the platform offered an opportunity for a young talent to gain exposure and recognition from the public.
Agency: We Studio Beijing
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