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Hunan’s “Looking China Youth Film Project” Successfully Comes to A Close

June 13, 2017 Destination North Asia No Comments Email Email

On May 31, 2017, the “Looking China Youth Film Project”, known as “Looking Hunan”, officially came to a close. This 15-day event allowed eleven young filmmakers from Eastern Europe to capture the essence of Hunan province in China through a new set of lenses, promoting the region’s brand to the world and increasing Hunan’s inbound tourism.

Themed “craftsmanship, inheritance and innovation”, each young filmmaker created a short film about Hunan’s culture, branding China’s image and spreading voices of the country through a new perspective. Topics of the films were of Hunan’s local cultural handicrafts that included: Miluo Dragon Boats, Liuyang Fireworks, the Art of Mud Book, the Flower Drum Opera, Ancient Books Reparation, Cultural Heritage Protection, Zoomlion and more.

The event was hosted and sponsored by Beijing Normal University and co-sponsored by Hunan Normal University. The Hunan Tourism Development Committee provided support and guidance, while PandaMobo, an advertising agency based in Beijing, administered the online promotion of the event on Hunan’s official Facebook fan page. Two social media influencers (key opinion leaders) also attended the event, getting a much deeper knowledge about the project and its goals.

Since the creation of Hunan’s official social media pages in January 2017, the total number of fans has reached 263,431 and is still growing at an exponential rate. Fans are mainly from Hunan’s targeting inbound countries such as the U.S., Japan, and Korea.

“It wouldn’t work if we used the traditional ways of marketing in China“, says Guobin Huang, Marketing Director of Hunan’s Tourism Development Committee. “If the foreigners have an incline towards Zhangjiajie in comparison to other areas, then we should post more images about Zhangjiajie. We must familiarize them with Hunan through their own personal preference. Also, the key opinion leaders are great resources and we can utilize them as a medium to promote Hunan.”

Baolong Pei, the Director of the Tourism Department at PandaMobo also emphasizes that, “Promoting to the overseas market requires more details, more patience, and more time. When it comes to the overseas market, the traditional way of advertising in China is too broad and insubstantial. Our team focuses on perfectionism. Along with eleven films that tell a different perspective of Hunan to the audience’s eyes, creative advertising formats such as Facebook Live Videos, Canvas, and 360 videos aid in the support of their promotion. During the offline event alone, Hunan’s Facebook fans increased by 58,328!”

On May 14-15th of 2017, the “One Belt, One Road” Summit was held in Beijing, illustrating Hunan’s focus on gaining more inbound tourists from overseas as well as marketing towards countries that lie on the “One Belt, One Road”, ensuring that the inbound tourism industry continues to flourish. According to a report that was published by the Hunan Tourism Bureau, from January to April in 2017, Hunan has welcomed 546,503 inbound tourists and has increased the revenue in foreign currency. With the development of China’s tourism industry, the “13th Five-Year Plan” implementation has initiated and Hunan’s inbound tourism will usher in a new round of development opportunities.

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