A new advertising platform directly targeting Chinese consumers that’s proved a runaway success elsewhere in the country is being launched in Queenstown.
Info Site – founded by Chinese entrepreneurs Bob Qin, Fang Fang and Luke Lee – has already proved a winner since originally launching in Hamilton seven months ago.
With around 1.5 million hits already under their belt by June – many of those hits coming straight from China – they’re expanding their service taking English ads to Chinese consumers by offering to partner with businesses in New Zealand’s most popular tourist resort.
The three founders didn’t realise initially that they were onto a potential winner. Their original aim was simply to help out a visiting community struggling to find its way around a foreign country, in a foreign language.
They launched Info Site – a platform on which New Zealand businesses could run ads, information and e-commerce in both English and Chinese — hoping to reach 300,000 hits by June, then went on to exceed that target five times over.
With over 170,000 Chinese-speaking residents in New Zealand and up to 310,000 visiting each year, they see it as a huge market for New Zealand businesses to tap into.
Recognising that the vast majority of Chinese visitors come to Queenstown and the Central Otago region, the next logical step is to bring this solution to those local businesses.
“This platform opens access to markets that businesses often don’t have the resources or know- how to communicate to,” says Info Site founder Bob Qin.
“There are many small to medium-sized activity or accommodation operators in Queenstown and the wider district that really could benefit from this direct marketing to an ever-growing number of Chinese visitors.”
With Google, Facebook and YouTube banned in China, Info Site has become the information bridge between New Zealand businesses and Chinese consumers.
The three founders found it hard to navigate the English language ‘Grab One’ type sites, and also recognized that a huge number of traditional retailers had no online presence.
“Without that online presence, retailers are missing out on a lot of foot traffic, which is especially the case for the Chinese market. If Chinese see a deal online, they’re very motivated to get to that store and purchase,” says Qin.
Hamilton client Robert Harris says they’ve seen a 23% increase in sales since advertising on Info Site.
The most popular advertising package costs clients $115 per month or $1000 a year. This includes a customised ad that is placed on Info Site in Chinese and English.