SHANGHAI, Dec. 5, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Following shortly behind Alibaba's Singles' Day Shopping Festival, Chinese shoppers seem to have been given another opportunity to complete that impulsive buy.
On December 3, the second 123 Knowledge Festival, an event orchestrated by leading Chinese mobile audio sharing platform ximalaya FM, came to a successful conclusion. According to the final data, this year's Knowledge Festival achieved a record turnover of 196 million yuan, up nearly 284 percent compared to the previous edition.
Paying for instructive online content, referred to in China as "knowledge payment", and the hosting of special shopping days focused on the purchase of such content or "knowledge festivals", have, over the last two years, become quite accepted in the Chinese marketplace. Yet, the event launched by ximalaya FM is the first content-themed shopping day. The roll out of the concept is closely related to the recent rise and acceptance of knowledge payment in China.
Knowledge payment as an industry in its own right has experienced vigorous growth in recent years, especially since 2016, which many in China have characterized as the "year of knowledge payment". The number of users willing to pay for instructive or educational content soared 300 percent to 50 million in 2016. On average, one out of every 30 Chinese consumers is willing to pay for knowledge. This year, on the back of increasing user demand, market penetration and expansion of the industry chain, the knowledge payment market is expected to balloon to between 30 billion and 50 billion yuan, an increase of 300 percent to 400 percent from a year earlier.
Taking as an illustration one of the more popular knowledge products, as of July of this year, just one year following its inception, Hao Hao Shuo Hua had 200,000 subscribers with annual sales exceeding 50 million yuan. The program was created by former CCTV host Ma Dong as a vehicle to teach anyone who is interested in the art of speaking or how to better express themselves in public. During this year's Knowledge Festival, Guo Lun, a talk show emceed by popular crosstalk actor Guo Degang, and Kevin Tsai's 201 EQ Lessons, the famous host's program aiding listeners in improving their EQ, have both achieved daily sales exceeding one million yuan, numbers that, despite the presence of leading celebrities, had been unimaginable in the past.
Almost overnight, the country has witnessed an upsurge in the willingness to pay for knowledge.
At the beginning of this year, education portal edu.163.com, a web presence owned and operated by one of China's internet leaders, NetEase, issued the 2016 Educated Youth Report jointly with mooc.guokr.com, and several other education-focused groups. Of those paying for knowledge online last year, up to 92.85% were born after 1980, signaling, according to statistics, excellent prospects for the knowledge payment model among the country's youth and young adult segments.
"The massive growth of the knowledge payment market is likely closely related to the rise of what is referred to as 'knowledge anxiety' across the two segments. With the rapid societal changes that have taken place in China, and, with it the concomitant constant change in what one is expected to know and be proficient in, the young members of the society, as they start to assert themselves among their peers and start their own families, frequently find themselves feeling deficient in terms of knowledge, information and cognition, causing them anxiety about where they fit in. This fear or anxiety is quite common and is driving the enthusiasm to pay for knowledge," an expert on the subject at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences explained.
With the rising popularity of new concepts such as mobile payment and intellectual copyright, the knowledge platforms, with ximalaya FM and Zhihu Live at the helm, are taking the lead across China's knowledge payment industry. According to data from venture capital media ITJUZI, the country's 11 knowledge payment companies attracted investment in the aggregate of 583 million yuan (approx US$88.1 million) during the first half of this year. Prospects are bright for the country's knowledge payment industry.
SOURCE ximalaya FM