Navigating the world of Chinese travel influencers can seem overwhelming, right? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. I’ve spent countless hours researching and connecting with these inspiring trendsetters to compile a comprehensive list just for you.
This blog is your all-access pass into the thrilling lives of China’s most influential travelers across different platforms like Weibo, Xiaohongshu, Douyin, and more. Intrigued? Let’s dive in!
China’s Travel Market is Back!
China’s travel sector is on a promising trajectory towards recovery following the challenges posed by COVID-19. A build-up of travel dreams over the past three years is finally seeing the light of day, and there’s a clear and growing excitement among Chinese citizens to explore their country anew.
Recent statistics from the China Tourism Research Academy paint a hopeful picture. They suggest that the number of people traveling within the country could touch an impressive 5.5 billion this year. This isn’t just about numbers; it also translates to a substantial economic impact. The revenue from these domestic travels is projected to reach a notable $690 billion, which is roughly 5 trillion RMB.
Such promising trends haven’t gone unnoticed. Brands, especially those in the luxury and beauty sectors, are keenly observing this shift. They’re gearing up to make the most of this anticipated surge in domestic tourism.
Drawing comparisons to the time just before the pandemic hit, the research from the academy is optimistic. It indicates that we could see domestic tourist numbers and associated revenue climbing back to 90% and 80% of those earlier levels. This is indeed a testament to the resilience of China’s travel industry and the undying spirit of its people to explore and experience.
Chinese Social Media Landscape
The Chinese social media landscape, especially in the context of the travel industry, is a dynamic and vibrant ecosystem. Platforms like WeChat, with its billion-plus users, offer an integrated suite of services from messaging to payment, making it indispensable for travel businesses aiming to tap into the Chinese market.
Douyin (known globally as TikTok) provides short-form video content where influencers and brands showcase travel destinations, experiences, and tips, gaining massive traction among younger audiences.
Weibo, often compared to Twitter, is a hotspot for real-time discussions and trend-spotting, with users often sharing their travel experiences, photos, and reviews.
Additionally, platforms such as Mafengwo and Qyer serve as travel-focused social communities where users can get personalized travel recommendations and share their own itineraries.
Brands in the travel sector looking to engage Chinese consumers must navigate this intricate web of platforms, recognizing the distinct characteristics and user behaviors inherent to each.
Top Chinese Travel Influencers
Here are some of the most popular Chinese travel influencers who have captured the attention of followers with their unique travel choices and impeccable sense of style.
Molly has made a big name for herself in the travel world. She’s got over 6.8 million fans on Weibo who love to see her travels. Not only that, but Molly is also popular because she knows what looks good.
Her style is a big reason why people follow her posts, and it’s earned her top spots among China’s style-loving travel influencers. Besides all this, Molly even works with luxury brands like Tiffany and La Mer! As if that isn’t enough, she sets herself apart by being an independent traveler who loves to stay healthy.
Yes indeed, when you talk about top Chinese travel influencers with style, Molly comes right to mind! She promoted Chinese fashion label and she’s working with a professional fashion stylist, promoting travel and fashion trends.
Kiki, renowned on Douyin as @房琪kiki, has carved a niche for herself as one of the platform’s foremost travel influencers, commanding an impressive audience of over 23 million followers. She has a unique approach to showcasing China’s vast and varied landscapes, often incorporating chengyu (成语) – the traditional four-character idioms – to narrate her experiences with poetic grace. This blend of tradition and modernity resonates deeply with her audience, prompting them to discover less-trodden paths and up-and-coming travel locales.
The allure of her content isn’t just confined to its poetic nature; Kiki’s vivid visuals receive massive engagement, often racking up tens of thousands of likes per post. This widespread acclaim has made her a magnet for brand collaborations.
A notable partnership was with the Hangzhou-origin beauty brand, Florasis. They engaged Kiki to spotlight their brand’s roots, culminating in a beautifully crafted short video, which also promoted their new product, the Flawless Jade powder.
Zhang and Liang
Zhang and Liang, a dynamic duo in both life and work, have become household names in China through their travel series “侣行” (lǚ xíng). This isn’t your typical travel show. Instead of highlighting popular tourist spots, the couple delves into the unconventional, visiting places that are often overlooked or misunderstood by the mainstream.
Their journey has taken them to some of the world’s most unique and challenging locales – from the frigid Oymyakon in Russia, a Canadian cruise trip, to the conflict-prone regions of Somalia, Syria, and Afghanistan. They’ve even ventured into the eerie remnants of the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant.
What sets their program apart is its commitment to authentic storytelling. Zhang and Liang offer viewers a window into the genuine, everyday lives of people in these regions, ensuring that their content isn’t just about breathtaking visuals but also informative narratives. Due to its unique nature, the show has found its home on select video platforms, like Youku.
The program’s rising prominence has garnered the attention of big-name brands. After earning acclaim, “侣行” secured a significant sponsorship deal with Mercedes-Benz, among other elite companies.
From the realms of game design to the vibrant world of travel blogging, September has carved a distinct path for herself. This Gen Z dynamo began making waves in 2020 when she started sharing her one-of-a-kind travel experiences on Douyin.
Rather than just skimming the surface, September dives into the heart of traditions. She’s learned the intricate art of crafting silver headsets from the Miao minority, mastered the dramatic spectacle of datiehua – a traditional firework method where iron meets brick to create a shower of sparks – and has transformed the humble lychee peel into mesmerizing incense waterfalls. Each video adventure usually begins with her on the hunt for raw materials, paving the way for a step-by-step journey through a cultural practice.
September isn’t just another travel blogger; she’s an ambassador of China’s rich cultural tapestry. For brands keen on aligning with China’s ‘guochao’ trend, which champions national pride and cultural revival, September stands out as a voice that resonates with the zeitgeist of the nation’s younger generation.
Phoney Chan is one of the top Chinese travel influencers known for her stylish approach. She has her own brand called PHO Studio and promotes Chinese fashion labels like Uma Wang and Dongliang.
You can find her on Weibo, a popular social media platform in China. Phoney Chan stands out among travel bloggers as a refreshing sight with her unique style and content.
桃巫奇edie is a popular Chinese travel influencer who ranks at number 6 on the list of top influencers with style. As a virtual influencer and key opinion leader (KOL) in China, 桃巫奇edie is known for providing insider tips and recommendations for the best places to visit in China.
They are part of a style-conscious group of travel influencers who engage with fans through various social media platforms. With their expertise and engaging content, 桃巫奇edie connects with followers and shares expert travel advice.
Whether it’s fashion-forward trends or insider knowledge about traveling in China, 桃巫奇edie is one of the top Chinese influencers in the travel industry.
Captain Han (韩船长漂流记)
Embarking on a solo sea voyage, Captain Han, at the age of 37, has chosen to challenge both the vastness of the oceans and the limits of personal endurance. Journeying on his sailboat, he has navigated the expansive waters of the Indian Ocean to explore the Middle East, and presently finds himself charting the diverse coasts of Europe – specifically the intriguing landscapes of the Balkan Peninsula, encompassing nations such as Greece, Albania, and Croatia.
An enthusiast of extreme sports, Captain Han has carved his mark in history. He became the first Chinese individual to leap from Mostar’s Old Bridge, an audacious tradition hailing from Montenegro. This heart-stopping jump, a dizzying 24 meters above the sea, was captured in a video that quickly went viral on Douyin, amassing a staggering 391,000 likes.
Many viewers conveyed their deep admiration and astonishment at Han’s daring act, especially given that since 1964, fewer than 2,000 souls have dared to take that same leap. He is featured in Chinese reality TV and magazines, giving inspiration to travel enthusiasts across China.
How to Collaborate with Chinese Travel Bloggers?
Collaborating with Chinese travel influencers and Key Opinion Leaders requires a nuanced approach, especially given the distinct digital ecosystem and cultural context of China. Here are some tailored tips to ensure successful partnerships:
When embarking on collaborations with Chinese travel influencers, it’s essential first to gain proficiency in China’s unique digital platforms. Acquainting yourself with the nuances of Douyin, Weibo, Xiaohongshu or Youku will provide insights into each platform’s features and user demographics.
As you select influencers for partnership, prioritize authenticity. Whether you’re working with mega influencers or micro-influencers, who often have niche and engaged audiences, ensuring they genuinely align with your brand values will lead to relatable and effective content.
Cultural and Regulatory Awareness
A crucial component of successful collaborations is being acutely aware of cultural and regulatory norms. Respecting and incorporating Chinese cultural values in your campaigns will foster trust and enhance relatability with your target audience.
Simultaneously, it’s essential to be well-versed in China’s specific advertising regulations and guidelines. This proactive approach ensures that all collaborations remain compliant and sidesteps potential issues.
The dynamics of collaboration also demand attention. Establish clear lines of communication from the outset, outlining deliverables, expectations, and timelines. This preemptive approach mitigates misunderstandings arising from language differences or varied business etiquettes.
While a structured campaign plan is a cornerstone, providing influencers with the flexibility to infuse their unique voice and style enriches the content, making it more organic and resonant.
To amplify engagement levels, integrate your campaigns around significant Chinese events, festivals, or holidays. These culturally rich moments are ideal opportunities for content that strikes a chord.
Moreover, continually monitor your campaign’s performance using the sophisticated analytics tools provided by Chinese platforms. This ongoing assessment yields valuable insights and can guide real-time strategy modifications.
Building Long-Term Relationships
Lastly, the most effective collaborations are those rooted in continuity. Instead of singular, isolated campaigns, focus on building and nurturing long-term relationships with influencers. Create regular promotional posts, promoting travel packages or unique destinations to Chinese tourists through Chinese KOLs. Such sustained collaborations lead to content that feels more genuine, forging a deeper connection with audiences. Adopting this holistic and strategic approach paves the way for fruitful collaborations with Chinese travel influencers.
Unlock the Power of Chinese Travel Influencers with Gentlemen Marketing Agency
In conclusion, there are many popular Chinese travel influencers who have gained a significant following on social media platforms. These influencers use their style, experiences, and savvy social media skills to attract a large audience and create buzz around destinations.
From Molly to Phoney Chan, these influencers have become influential figures in the Chinese travel industry and continue to inspire others with their travels.
If you’re looking for travel inspiration or want to collaborate with top Asian bloggers, dive deep into the world of influencer marketing with Gentlemen Marketing Agency. With a proven track record, our agency has successfully bridged countless global brands with the most resonant voices in China’s travel influencer community.
Why Choose Gentlemen Marketing Agency?
- Industry Expertise: With years of experience, we understand the intricacies of the Chinese travel market and its digital ecosystem. Our insights will seamlessly guide your brand through platforms like Douyin, Weibo, and Youku, ensuring your campaigns resonate with the target audience.
- Tailored Strategies: Every brand is unique, and so are its goals. We craft customized influencer strategies, ensuring your brand collaborates with influencers that align perfectly with your values, offering authenticity and maximizing ROI.
- End-to-End Solutions: From initial influencer identification to campaign execution and analytics, our comprehensive services ensure you’re supported at every step. We take the guesswork out of the process, allowing you to focus on the bigger picture.
- Cultural Nuance: Our team is deeply rooted in both international marketing and Chinese cultural dynamics. This dual expertise ensures your campaigns are not only effective but also culturally sensitive, amplifying engagement and trust.
Embrace the potential of influencer marketing in China’s burgeoning travel industry. With Gentlemen Marketing Agency by your side, you’re not just running campaigns; you’re crafting narratives, building bridges, and making genuine connections.
Let’s embark on this transformative journey together. Contact us today to get started!