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Sina Weibo

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Chloe Wang

on 30 September 2013

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Transcript of Sina Weibo

Sina Weibo
China social network landscape
The No.1 Chinese Microblog
Compare with other Microblogs
Business Model
Dual customer model makes Sina Weibo monetizing its community base by linking it to corporates


a story of the so-called Chinese Twitter
Wilhelm HAMMES, Björn SEEBER, Michelle ZENG,
Tomotaka OSUMI, Sergio RINAUDO,Chloe WANG

The competition in China is substantially intensive. Social networks, including microblogs, provide more integrated services than those in the US
3 Cs of
Our Presentation
Microbloging is now a world trend. We will explain the trend and its business situation in China and the challenge Sina Weibo faces now.
– Uniqueness and business model
– Comparison with other SNS
Sina Weibo faces now & possible solutions
in 2009, launched by SINA Corp---the largest portal & blogging service provider in China
It's Twitter-like, but more than Twitter
“Microblogging” in China emerged from traditional blogs/forums, it has characters of: “Monopolistic competition”, “Overlap in users”; the biggest challenge facing the industry is monetization.
Media Gene:

Faster user acquisition
A vigorous public sphere under censorship
Features innovation
Company profile:
+500 million registered users (30% of total CN netizens)
celebrities, compeanies, NPOs accounts (verified)
– events, photos, emotions, videos, real-time messaging, app, game, topics ….
Company profile:
Customer value proposition
Key Resources

Mother holding
Employees (renren)
Strings to government
Profit Formula
Key Process
Chinese major city yuppies and students:

Bring your life into your friends‘ lives! (advances twitter)

Online ads (80%)
paid content
privilege membership
social games


Companies with high need to advertise:

Large traffic → large impression
Reach specifically targeted customers

Product development
“Microblogging” in China emerged from traditional blogs/forums, it has characters of: “Monopolistic competition”, “Overlap in users”; the biggest challenge facing the industry is monetization.
Sina: First-mover, Market leader , Innovative
Tecent: Big (Backed up by the biggest social community QQ) but not always efficient
Netease: Grassroots celebrity, Forum/content driven
Sohu: Puzzled follower, Blog based

Compare with other SNS
In China “Integrated with multifunction” products are always welcomed. SinaWeibo, with media nature, faces challenge from other cross-border SNS platforms.
Wechat – a born “king”?
QQ – mature products system, face challenge internally
Renren – Ivory tower social tool, a sinking ship
SinaWeibo – media platform with social network effect

3 Challenges
Chinese government is said to be about to lift the ban on politically sensitive foreign websites inside the Shanghai free-trade zone. Will China soon open up?
Foreign Competition
Several issues on the path to success:
Twitter &Facebook wants to reenter China market
Across-channel monetization, e.g. social gaming & brand partnerships work better in PC than on mobile; WeChat on mobile
Too much banner ads put off users
Weak in IT tech, lack the ability to do precision advertising & data-mining
limited financing channels

+ the opportunity to nearly double its user base

- Top executives’ willingness and ability to deal with government restrictions
- Difficulty of adapting a foreign platform to the Chinese market
- Harsh competition, with Sina Weibo as the clear leader (>50% of the market share) and many start-ups offering alternative products

despite treat from wechat, weibo also faces
Started monetization from 2012, but faced many difficulties:
Turing point:
alibaba‘s investment
Sina has invested more than
$280 Million
into Weibo and remains to be seen, if Weibo can become Sina’s new cash cow
Capture new streams of revenue

Alibaba bought 18% stake of Weibo for $586 Million: integrate user accounts and facilitate taobao.com purchases.
weibo contributes 2.5% traffic for Taobao
Potential advertising revenue from Taobao merchants’

Sina stock price suffered, dropping from ~$140 per share (2011)to less than $50 (end of 2012)
Stock price went up for 10% after the announce of investment and 2013 1H revenue growth higher than expectation
“Black List” defines words, topics and names; posts must be instantly deleted;
Team of 150 employees have to engage in filtering process
Follow the rules
-Government shut down Sohu & NetEase for a few days for non compliance
Full transcript