Our colleague and Data Analytics Expert, Victor, had the great opportunity to participate this month to the SalesForce Commerce Cloud conference in Hong Kong to introduce the use of data-visualization in today's digital marketing world. Here, we've wrapped up the presentation and summarized its content for you readers.
Our colleague and Data Analytics Expert, Victor, had the great opportunity to participate this month to the Salesforce Commerce Cloud conference in Hong Kong to introduce the use of data-visualization in today's digital marketing world. Here, we've wrapped up the presentation and summarized its content for you readers. Introduction Be data-driven. You've heard that. As a digital marketer, you are meant to carefully listen to the divine voice of… data. And yes, being able to collect and leverage data is indeed key when it comes to make the most objective and efficient decision. But, let’s be blunt: raw statistics can be boring, sometimes frustrating, and more than often, very confusing. Besides, the China digital world with its very various platforms and channels, complex and long user journeys, does not really help gain visibility to make the most of data. You Need a Hero Fortunately, digital marketers have been able to powerfully overcome this difficulty by leveraging data-visualization and offset most related challenges. Data-what? "'Dataviz' is about communicating numbers or raw information, by transforming them into visual objects: dots, bubbles, bars, curves, maps. […] It is the art of showing figures in a more creative and appealing way, where Excel tables can fail.” says Charles Miglietti, Co-founder of Toucan Toco. To say it differently, the main goal of data-visualization is to communicate information clearly and effectively through graphical means.  If the use of an analogy was needed to illustrate what all of this is about, we could simply say that data-visualization is to data, what "photoshopping" is to models: a very useful way to make the unattractive look very attractive:  Yet, in data-visualization, it is important to find the right balance between form and function, to avoid the pitfall of creating gorgeous data-visualizations for the sake of aesthetics which in the end fail to serve their main purpose: to communicate information.  By the way, has data-visualization been invented by digital marketers? Back to where it all begins No, the concept of data-visualization has not been invented by digital marketers willing to impress their team mates with awesome illustrations, or their clients with story-telling dashboards. Although, great pieces of graphics will sometimes impress your comrades, and will definitely help make decisions, the graphic portrayal of quantitative information has deeper roots, reaching into histories of thematic cartography, statistical graphics, and are connected with the rise of statistical thinking up through the 19th century. The birth of statistical thinking was followed by a rise in visual thinking: diagrams were used to illustrate mathematical functions, various graphic forms were invented to help calculations, etc.  Digital marketers didn't invent anything here, but have instead simply participated in extending data-visualization's application scope to the communication of digital marketing information, using advanced tools: software solutions. short selection of data visualization software products (which will be further introduced in a future dedicated article) Dataviz is everywhere Digital marketers didn't invent data-visualization, neither do they have the monopoly of its use. Dataviz' is everywhere and everyday in your life: on your bank application, your fitness tracker, your user account in your favorite ecommerce site, in social media, etc.   And that's a good thing, as visual beings we are much better at understanding and seeing patterns and trends when the data is visualized. Use & Challenges But then, how could a digital marketer more specifically and efficiently leverage data-visualization? Clarifying information through the use of data-visualization, in the case of digital marketing, is a three-steps operation, which consist of: Combining data to unify views when multiple sources are exploited Transforming raw data into clear and appealing graphics Adapting dashboard visuals to the different audiences you speak to The purpose of a dataviz' solution has to go beyond the creation of nice visuals. Yes,transforming raw data into clear and beautiful graphics is cool. And, it is a key step to help gain visibility from illegible endless Excel spreadsheets. However, the transformation itself will not bring you enough clarity if you are not able to provide a unified view of these data when they are residing in different sources (Website, Wechat, Marketplaces, etc.). Besides, depending on the audience you are speaking to, you will have to select the most relevant information and adapt the way you introduce it.  Can a software help achieve that? Yes, Google Data Studio does. It is not the only one, but a great one. A beta version of Data Studio was released last year by Google, in March 2016, and made it free to use without much limitation. As a dataviz' software, Data Studio gives you everything you need to turn your analytics data into informational, easy-to-understand reports through data-visualization. Reports are easy to read, easy to share and customizable to each of your audience. Data Studio goes beyond just providing pretty dashboards, it allows to pull in more than just Google Analytics data, as it offers the possibility to import data from other sources via the use, among other methods, of Google Sheets. Social Media & Ecommerce data can for instance co-exist and show up in the very same reports without requiring too many manual interventions.   And when there's an update to the data source, the updated/new information automatically shows up on any reports that reference the source. In other words: your dashboards become dynamic.  Additionally, the reports are shareable, which will help give different accesses to different dashboards according to the audience you wish to convey information to. Oh, but yes, you'll need a VPN to access it from China, but it is worth all the pain.  Conclusion Being data-driven is essential when it comes to decision making, in particular in the field of digital marketing. Yet, to achieve that, you've got to get equipped with the right weapons. This is precisely where lies the purpose of data-visualization: it provides you with the right tool to accomplish the right mission. So, if you don't want to look like the guy below, we strongly suggest that you quickly get started with the use of dataviz' solution . To download the full presentation, click on the picture below:
La Boutique France (literally “the French boutique” in French) was officially launched on Tmall Global last October. Several brands have already joined this cross-border e-commerce program offered by Geopost, a subsidiary of La Poste Group, the French public postal company.
La Boutique France (literally “the French boutique” in French) was officially launched on Tmall Global last October. Several brands have already joined this cross-border e-commerce program offered by Geopost, a subsidiary of La Poste Group, the French public postal company. By setting up a store on Tmall Global, the leading cross-border e-commerce platform in China, the French postal operator aims to gather “made in France” brands under the same roof to reach the growing trend of Chinese consumers buying products coming from overseas. La Boutique France homepage on Tmall Global during the Chinese New Year  Why is cross-border such a hot topic in China? To answer the expectations of Chinese online shoppers regarding overseas products, local e-commerce players have created platforms dedicated to cross-border e-commerce, widely encouraged by a favorable change in 2010 to the regulations towards exporters to China. According to iResearch, the cross-border e-commerce business accounted for over 6% of the overall China e-commerce business in 2015 and has grown upwards of 50% annually (versus +26% for overall e-commerce). Reported by eMarketer,31% of online Chinese shoppers have bought on cross-border e-commerce platforms in 2015, and over 21% of the total population is expected to do so by 2018. A large number of factors explain why the Chinese are attracted by cross-border online shopping. First of all, they have a strong interest in new brands and products which aren’t necessarily available in the domestic market. Secondly, products sold through cross-border are often cheaper than those distributed via traditional channels, partly thanks to favorable tax regulations. Thirdly, shoppers on cross-border e-commerce sites mostly look for genuine products and therefore feel some degree of protection from counterfeit goods. What is La Boutique France? With the support of the French government agency Business France (the agency specialized in the internationalization of the French economy) and Alibaba, the French postal company has launched a multi-brand store on Tmall Global accessible at laposte.tmall.hk. By setting up La Boutique France, Geopost has actually followed other national post operators such as Royal Mail, Australia post and New Zealand post which have already setup national boutiques in the past years. Several brands are already available on the Boutique France: Arcancil (cosmetics), Parashop, Bioderma, Bi-Oil, Uriage (skincare), Baghera (kids), Regilait (food) and more brands, including some famous names, are expected to join the program in the coming weeks. Arcancil was the first brand to join “La Boutique France” on Tmall Global France is late but now accelerating! Although France has a lot to offer in terms of brands and products, it is not yet a primary destination for Chinese online shoppers who buy from overseas. Indeed, France doesn’t appear in the top 5 countries on Tmall Global according to the latest “Annual Report on Tmall Global Data 2016” by Tmall Global and CBNData.  However, France and China have recently joined forces in order to facilitate a higher penetration of French products into China. The worldwide e-commerce giant Alibaba has committed to favor the promotion of French brands on its marketplaces and has established a qualification program in partnership with Business France for businesses willing to join the cross-border e-commerce program. As partners of Business France in this initiative to get closer to the Chinese giant, La Poste group has chosen to primarily help SMEs to take their first step on the largest e-commerce market worldwide. La Boutique France guarantees the authenticity of their products to the Chinese consumers, and promotes a French “art de vivre”. As a result, French online merchants now have access to a global selling-distribution offer, which includes the following services: uploading products online, managing orders, guaranteeing payments, prompting brands to build their awareness in China, shipping orders, clearing customs, delivering to the the end consumer’s household, as well as  customer service in Chinese. As a French business, why should you join La Boutique France? Geopost offers several advantages, such as: Allowing you to sell in China on Tmall Global and access their 650 million clients without the necessity to get a license Selling in China with a fast time-to-market (within 2 months) Providing a full-service e-commerce operations solution Taking advantage of a discounted pricing on shipping (handled by La Poste transport operators Geopost and Colissimo), as well as a marketing investment from La Poste group (over 1 million € per year) to build brand equity Reasonable investment requirements: a flat annual fee of 70 K€ for a 12-month subscription, 60 K€ per year for a 24-month commitment and even 50 K€ per year for a 36-month commitment (vs. a minimum of several hundreds K€ per year when setting up your own flagship store on Tmall Global and promoting it). Reduced risk of financial loss by adding La Boutique France’s offer to your BPI France export ensured budget I am a French brand, how could I join the program? If you represent a French business or a French brand, it’s possible to join the La Boutique France’s program. You are eligible to sell on La Boutique France if: Your brand is registered in France You have the brand’s authorization to sell in China Your products have a potential in China(1) Your products are authorized for airfreight For more information, feel free to download the full offer from Geopost (in French) and check the official video. If you are interested in joining La Boutique France, or would like to get additional information, please contact: Thibault Boiron (based in China), Managing Partner at altima° (tboiron (at) altima-agency.cn) Marc Lissak (based in France), La Boutique France Director at La Poste Group (marc.lissak (at) geopostgroup.com) And follow La Boutique France on Wechat: (1) La Boutique France's team can check your products' China e-market potential. Feel free to contact us to find out more.
China’s digital market evolves at a great pace. The incredible WeChat’s growth over the past 5 years is a clear illustration of China’s capacity and tendency to shake up users' habits, imposing brands to continuously adapt its marketing tactics and strategy in order to succeed.
China’s digital market evolves at a great pace. The incredible WeChat’s growth over the past 5 years is a clear illustration of China’s capacity and tendency to shake up users' habits, imposing brands to continuously adapt its marketing tactics and strategy in order to succeed. Arnaud Rofidal, altima° Asia’s CEO, evokes, in an Interview given to The French Chamber of Commerce in China’s magazine - Connexions: China, The Digital Revolution, China’s market characteristics along with the challenges for brands that these involve, among which the absolute necessity to be responsive to catch up with the latest marketing trends. To read the interview (in french, page 31), click on the below picture.
In China, users’ trust is key. Baidu, which experienced a series of scandals in the past few years due to the exposition of unreliable information, is trying to win back the trust of users on search results.
In China, when it comes to marketing (both online and offline), cultivating users’ trust is key. Baidu, which experienced a series of scandals in the past few years due to the exposition of unreliable information, is trying to win back the trust of users on search results. One illustration is given on the paid search results area, where Baidu reduced the numbers of ads, and made them more explicitly recognizable so that users can easily identify these as actual ads. Baidu also took actions on organic search results. In November 2016, the Chinese giant launched a new feature to protect official websites via its webmaster tool: Baidu Zhanzhang. The tool has been designed to prioritize the ranking of official websites on brand keywords, and therefore to further enhance the credibility and reliability of natural search results. It does happen that sometimes, when users search brand keywords on Baidu, fake brand websites appear in the results, impacting users’ experience and generating potential risks. Obviously, this does not only affect Baidu’s credibility, but also, and more importantly, brand sites themselves. When fake brand websites compete for rankings on brand keywords, official brand websites face challenges on both organic traffic and brand reputation sides. As shown below, a fake site positioned itself on Decathlon’s brand keywords, so whenever users typed in Decathlon in Chinese on Baidu (迪卡侬), it would appear as the first organic search result, before Decathlon’s website itself.  Decathlon's official website was in the 2nd position To solve this issue, we leveraged Baidu’s new tool - Baidu ZhanZhang - and its protection feature, submitting brand related keywords for Decathlon. the submitted brand keywords approved by Baidu After about a week, all submitted keywords were approved by Baidu. We then ran a test, searching Decathlon on Baidu, and indeed, the ranking was changed: Decathlon’s official website went up to the 1st spot, while the previous fake one disappeared from the top 3 results. Decathlon's genuine website now takes the first spot in organic results  Brands can submit up to three brand keywords for PC and mobile respectively. Once Baidu confirms these keywords, official websites are treated preferentially. It is also possible to report fake websites to Baidu, which will investigate and find a solution in order to protect genuine brand sites. Today, more and more brand sites are using this new feature, which has proven its usefulness and efficacy in a world where trust is a key factor of success.
Despite the fast changes the Chinese Internet landscape has experienced over the past few years, search engines continue to be an essential gateway for online researches. SEO therefore remains a well-adapted asset for current marketing challenges as much for brand reputation as for the generation of conversion.
Despite the fast changes the Chinese Internet landscape has experienced over the past few years, search engines continue to be an essential gateway for online researches. SEO therefore remains a well-adapted asset for current marketing challenges as much for brand reputation as for the generation of conversion. During the Breakfast Series organized by Salesforce Commerce Cloud, and held in Shanghai last month, our Managing Partner, Thibault Boiron, and myself, Suki Yang, Senior SEO Manager, shared our expertise on making good use of SEO in China and our knowledge on China online marketing. After introducing China SEO characteristics and China market specificities, we discussed the best way to leverage SEO in China, which revolves around the following three axes: Increasing your brand visibility through the creation of valuable and relevant content for users Maximizing ROI by combining SEO & Paid Search Controlling your brand's online reputation  To download the full presentation, click on the below picture:

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