ChoZan Webinar #2: How traditional offline-first businesses in China reinvented themselves during COVID-19?

It’s no secret that China has been one of the most forefront players in the digital scene. There has always been an abundant supply of technology, consumer base and products in China. As soon as the pandemic hit, the adoption of digitalisation accelerated and the switch to the digital consumption of all services, i.e. remote work, online education, online healthcare and medicine was a very smooth and natural transition. While digitalisation is abundant everywhere in the world, it goes into full immersion in China. Some traditional offline-first businesses in China also took this chance to embrace digitalisation and revisit their business strategies.

In this sudden epidemic the retail, entertainment and education sectors are the top three industries most disrupted. However, seeing opportunity in luck, these three industries have made full use of the chances appearing during COVID-19, and have successfully twisted weak situations into growth potentials.

What will you learn?

Traditional offline-first businesses are now grasping this change to go online, some even manage to streamline their operations and open doors of opportunity. See what you can learn from these traditional businesses and check out our webinar now. 


The retail sector has undoubtedly been affected the most seriously. The biggest problems in the retail industry stem from a hardship to resume as before combined with a cultural shunning of consumption that isn’t hyperlocal.

We can see that SMEs and offline retail are having a hard time getting back on track. Many enterprises started sharing employees to solve some problems, such as Haidilao, Xibei, and many other catering or retail companies. According to expert predictions this trend is highly possible to be normalized. Freshippo, which belongs to Alibaba, is developing an employee sharing platform which they may showcase later.

To solve the shunning of consumption problem the community retail sector can properly twist a situation and lead consumers to new trends. According to famous business critic Li Zhigang,  “Community retail is the decisive battlefield of the retail industry in the future with 60% of retail set to occur in neighborhoods.”

For example, the Country Garden launched its community store Bi Optimus with 600 locations in the Greater Bay Area. Another, Bihuan, specializes in vegetables, fruits, meats, grains, oils, water, and other daily necessities. The products are mainly its own brand, which are mainly distributed accordingly to meet the distinct needs of community customer groups within 1-3 kilometers with central locations to the community.


A lot of offline entertainment businesses in China have stated that their cash reserves can only last 3 months. The global film industry is facing $5 billion in losses amid the COVID-19 outbreak. In response, not only have movies gone online, but also the net bar, the club, and TV shows have explored new formats for live-streaming.


Last but not least, the education industry has been disrupted quite seriously as well. Social distancing makes interactions between students and teachers more difficult and less efficient, while the technology and internet in this period were not enough to support the greatly increased traffic demand. 

So, how can we improve? Enhance social functions and user loyalty, meet users’ fragmented learning needs, target specific audiences, develop a product series and focus on platform characteristics to inspire users to learn. They have followed these steps and the education industry has really maintained in this tough time.

What lessons can we all learn from how traditional offline-first businesses in China that reinvented themselves during COVID-19? Check out this webinar delivered by our ChoZan team members Wendy and Amy to find out more.

About the Webinar

Topic: What are the lessons we can all learn from how traditional offline-first businesses in China reinvented themselves during COVID-19?

Speakers: Wendy Chen, Amy Cheung

ChoZan Webinar #2 – How traditional offline-first Chinese businesses are reinventing themselves during COVID-19

For access to the presentation slides of the webinar, please click here.

You can also visit our ChoZan webinar playlist on YouTube to check out our entire webinar series.

About the Speakers 

Wendy Chen, Head of Digital Products at ChoZan

Wendy has over 2 years of experience in social media marketing projects. She helps brands understand how to leverage Weibo and niche platforms like Bilibili, Kuaishou, and Mafengwo. She closely tracks social media trends and as an expert on creative media campaigns, Wendy has lots of insights on KOLs and China’s fan economy. As a digital marketing trainer at ChoZan, Wendy has trained multinational clients from the FMCG, fashion and lifestyle sector. Through our exclusive China Marketing Circle, Wendy digs into the latest trends, insights and case studies related to modern Chinese consumers and shares them weekly with hundreds of brands and China watchers.

Amy Cheung, Social Media Marketing Manager at ChoZan

Amy has over 4 years of experience with Chinese social media. She’s a blogger herself and has done training for big corporations with a focus on the latest trends and insights on modern Chinese consumers.

Our ChoZan digital marketing trainers can galvanize strategy planning sessions, align teams or consolidate marketing skills. Our corporate training sessions are fully customisable. Tell us about the problems you’re trying to solve and we’ll get right on it.

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