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Social Media Dominated By American Platforms, But China a Strong Second

Swiss brand value rating agency BV4 has just released a report ranking what it says are the world’s top social brands. Not surprisingly, American social web services come out on top, but China is very well represented also.

Facebook takes the top spot with an estimated brand value of about $29 billion, with YouTube and Twitter following with $18 billion and $13 billion respectively [1]. China’s entries in the top ten are Qzone in fourth ($11 billion), and the dueling Weibos from Sina and Tencent in fifth and eighth ($4 billion and $3.5 billion). Other Chinese services to break the top 30 include Renren (12th), Pengyou (14th), Kaixin (18th), Tudou (21st), and Youku (24th). For the full list of 30, check out BV4’s report.

But it’s interesting to ponder the growth of social in China where a couple of factors that could limit the nation’s platforms:

  1. The looming issue of real name registration for social sites like Weibo.
  2. The language barrier will likely limit their expansion beyond Chinese borders, and as b4V points out, they could reach a saturation point faster as a result.

Nevertheless, China is said to account for about half of all Asia’s social internet users (over 300 million this year according to eMarketer). And internet companies both in China and abroad will want a part of that market for a long time to come.

BV4_Brand-Report_2012

From BV4's Brand Report 2012


  1. According to the report, “in practice, brand value corresponds to the sum of future brand-specific earnings discounted to present value.” The full explantation is pretty tedious and boring, so much so that I don’t doubt for a moment that it is real science.  ↩



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