While short video app TikTok is facing troubles in international markets such as the US and India, its mainland Chinese version Douyin is proving to be as popular as ever, recently adding another European football giant to its collection of official partners.
English Premier League club Manchester City signed a two-year deal starting in August for Douyin to run exclusive content such as interviews, match highlights and documentaries as its “official short video partner”, the team said in a WeChat post earlier this week.
As part of the partnership, Manchester City will also work with Douyin to launch themed challenges on the viral short video platform, and plan more content at key periods such as major international events to “narrow the distance between the club and its fans,” it said in the post.
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The English club is the latest of several well-known football names to work with Douyin. The Chinese short video app became La Liga’s official social media partner in China in April, and the Spanish football league now has 1.6 million followers on the app. German club FC Bayern Munich, which signed a similar deal with Douyin in May, has 1.1 million followers in China.
TikTok may be more well-known globally, but Douyin still generates most of the revenue for the apps’ Beijing-based owner ByteDance. The mainland Chinese market accounted for 89 per cent of the two apps’ combined revenue in May, followed by 6.2 per cent from the US, according to Sensor Tower.
Even as TikTok faces a ban by the Trump administration as early as this Sunday over national security and data privacy concerns, Douyin has grown its number of daily active users in its domestic market by 50 per cent since the start of the year – from 400 million in January to 600 million in August – and its enormous user base has continued to be a draw for international names.
Scott Munn, chief executive of the China operations at City Football Group, which owns Manchester City, said the club’s official Chinese Douyin account is its “fastest-growing social media account in China”. The account, started in December 2018, currently has more than 840,000 followers.
Douyin’s tremendous influence in China has also attracted the attention of global fashion houses. Luxury brands Christian Dior and Gucci have 696,000 and 855,000 followers respectively on their official Douyin accounts, while other labels like Louis Vuitton and Chanel actively advertise on the platform although they do not have official accounts.
More from South China Morning Post:
- TikTok becomes a case study for Chinese companies planning global expansion
- Douyin, China’s TikTok, grows daily active users to 600 million in home country amid global headwinds
- YouTube to launch TikTok-like short-form video feature in India after ban of Chinese app
- China’s TikTok, Douyin, says it created 36 million jobs in the last year, with lots of live-streamers
- WeChat’s short video feature Channels has drawn 200 million users in six months, but can it take on Douyin?
This article Douyin, China’s TikTok, scores exclusive short video content partnership with Manchester City first appeared on South China Morning Post