• NMG Staff

JD.com turns Chinese living rooms into nightclubs

Updated: Sep 9



This article was originally published by Matthieu Jolly (BNP Paribas Personal Finance).


The Chinese platform JD.com sets the stage for mobinautes to dance via live streaming and organises an alcohol home delivery service. A profitable initiative, bound to last beyond the lockdown period.


In many countries, the Covid-19 pandemic has led to the shutdown of establishments open to the public such as bars, restaurants, concert halls and discotheques. Overnight, clubbers around the world found themselves home-bound. Very quickly, the Chinese e-commerce giant JD.com decided to take advantage of this growth by launching a new service: Online Clubbing. The principle is simple: if partygoers can no longer go dancing in discos, then the discos have to meet them at their homes.


To succeed in this challenge, JD.com has teamed up with Taihe Music Group, a Chinese C-pop label. Every week, the e-merchant welcomes on its live stream site - JD Live - one of the artists of the record company. For three hours, the DJ makes the crowds dance from their living rooms. To make the virtual party look even more like a real night at the disco, JD.com has forged partnerships with Chinese and international alcohol manufacturers. A godsend for players whose sales have collapsed due to the lockdown. Encouraged by the DJ, the clubber can, throughout the evening, treat himself to a drink as he would in the club. All he has to do is click on the basket present in the stream to select his drink and pay for it. The results seem to be positive: one brand saw its sales increase by 70% during one session. For another, beer sales jumped by 40%.


With this success, and despite the lifting of the lockdown in China, JD.com continues its live shows. The platform wants to broadcast its programmes from discos or music festivals to build loyalty among a young target audience.


THE OPINION OF Matthieu Jolly, BNP Paribas Personal Finance expert


What if the Covid-19 pandemic marked the explosion of a new form of commerce: live commerce? It was during the SARS pandemic that e-commerce exploded in China with, for example, the launch of Taobao in 2003. With stores closed again, brands and retailers have been turning to the live streaming platforms of the Chinese giants since the beginning of the crisis: JD Live, Taobao Live and, the latest, Pinduoduo live streaming. Between January and February 2020, the number of merchants present on Taobao Live increased by 716%. Real estate agents, restaurateurs, shopping malls, car dealers and even farmers... practice live commerce. The turnover generated by this channel is expected to double in 2020, from 433 billion yuan to more than 900 billion yuan.


Combining e-commerce and social commerce, live commerce surfs on the need for human relations. If the interaction is digital, live stream humanizes the interaction and increases the turnover generated by brands. Therefore, Chinese brands are currently betting on training to transform their salespeople into omnichannel advisers capable of accompanying the customer in store and remotely.


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