Live streaming has reached the value of 1.2 trillion yuan and is now considered a fundamental sales tool in China. Let’s find out how it works and who are the main players.

A few weeks ago, we talked about Taobao, the most used e-commerce marketplace by Chinese consumers. Anyone who has been to China has tried, at least once, the experience of buying through this platform.

The term experience is not casual. Especially for a Western consumer, buying on Taobao means having a customer experience that expresses innovation.
Are you wondering what kind of innovation are we talking about?


In this article, we will present one of the most common, but at the same time most stunning, ways of promoting and communicating: Live streaming.

What is it about?
Imagine a live stream during which dozens and dozens of products are presented and for each of them there are links that leads the consumer to the direct purchase of specific products. All are presented and managed by some of the most important Chinese influencers (KOL).

Yes ok, you will tell yourself. A bit like the Instagram ADV, where the influencer places the link (the old swipe) in the story, and the link leads to the page for purchasing the product. Nothing exceptional.
I got your point! It might not seem like something new except for:

  • The catchment area of potential consumers is much wider.
  • You pay through WeChat Pay or Zhifubao, electronic wallets on your mobile phone, which allow you to make a purchase in a blink of an eye.
  • Everyone in China uses these payment methods, not only Millennials and GenZ as it happens in Western countries.

The ease and immediacy of purchasing through live-streaming meant that in 2019 sales in China due to these ways of payment reached sixty-one billion dollars.
One hundred and forty-five of which were gained, in a single day, by a single influencer: Li Jiaqi, the real star of this article.


Li Jiaqi has an old-fashioned story: a talented young man who worked hard to make it! Counting 320 million followers on Douyin 抖 音, the Chinese version of Tik Tok, Li Jiaqi, also known as Austin Li Jiaqi, is certainly one of the most influential characters in the contemporary history of Chinese Digital Marketing.

Since 2016, he has been known throughout the country as the “King of lipsticks”, a nickname due to the long live streams on Taobao, during which he does not just swatch the lipsticks, but tries them on himself, one by one, making live streaming shows last for hours.

The story of Li Jiaqi in China 

Before the live shows on Taobao, Li Jiaqi worked as a beauty assistant for L’Oréal, in the Tianhong Mall in Nanchang. Here he began to approach the cosmetics sector, improving his skills as a salesman. He was so good at recommending the right lipstick, that many of the customers went there specifically when he was there.

How to be influencer in China

In 2016, Li Jiaqi was selected by Taobao during an exclusive audition involving 200 sales talents. And so, in just one year, he went from selling one for one (yi dui yi 一对一) in the shop to selling one for 10,000 (yi dui yi wan 一对一 万). Everything was officialized by the signing of a contract with Beauty One (美 One), a celebrity agency based in Shanghai.

The secret of his success lies not only in his innate talent and in his excellent communication skills (his OMG has gone viral on Chinese social networks), but above all in his motivation and dedication.

Actually, to conduct a live-streaming sale means many things: presenting the product, facing live Q&A sessions, and last but not least, entertaining the public. All this requires constant preparation, which includes much more hours of work.

Talent, motivation and dedication made Li Jiaqi’s name appear on the Times’ 2021 TIME100 NEXT list, where it is defined:

Li Jiaqi is a livestreaming sales powerhouse who has melted hearts with his charismatic—and candid—beauty-product reviews.”

Online shopping in China

The outbreak of the pandemic undoubtedly had an empowering effect on a phenomenon that was already widespread in China: online shopping.

We live in an era where online sales are gradually replacing the offline and retail worlds. An era where the consumers’ attention represents a huge opportunity in terms of sales for companies.
Li Jiaqi is one of the main influencers of this phenomenon.

Western companies that aim to gain a slice of the high-competitive Chinese market must approach it consciously, through the right figures and tools. KOL collaboration may be one way of promoting your brands in China.

Long Advisory agenzia di marketing in Cina

Long Advisory supports American and European companies in China through digital marketing. In fact, our experience has led us to believe that today, the best and most convenient approach to make your brand well-known in China is through a digital approach. Furthermore, thanks to our know-how we know how to make your brand known to potential Chinese consumers. With the effective coordination of Long Advisory, your company will see a new rise in the largest market in the world: China.

Interested in expanding your brand in China? Contact us for more info and details at


 Martina Bellucci

The 618 shopping festival in China holds great importance to Chinese customers. It strongly shows the influences that the consumer culture and tradition of