Many Youtube watchers in the West will have observed the comeback of Auto-Tune Remix-Themed Content (ATRTC) in recent years, helped by the many timeless quotes from President Trump which lend themselves to song.
Yet while songs in the genre are generally created by people at home with a Mac and some sound and video-editing tools, some of the biggest names in China’s tech scene are jumping on the trend to connect with the masses in a humorous way.
The most recent was Jun Lei, founder and chairman of Mi Tech (of Xiaomi fame), who created a Bilibili account on 28 July and posted his first ATRTC video on 30 July. The video resulted in around 4 million views and 627k followers. Long before he created his own account, Mr. Lei already had a following from ATRTC fans. Back on 30 April 2015, a Bilibili account called ‘Mr. Lemon’ posted a video called “Dance with Mr. Lei! Are you OK!” The ATRTC made fun of his accent from media he’d been in India, and clocked 330.5m views.
Jun Lei wasn’t mad at Mr. Lemon for mocking him, in fact he expressed his gratitude to Mr. Lemon for helping his fame and even bought the song’s copyright. The Chinese public appreciated that Lei didn’t take himself too seriously.
Following Mr. Lemon’s video, Jun Lei’s footage became fodder for the ATRTC genre. This meant Jun Lei’s first personal ATRTC video on Bilibili already had a tuned-in audience. When Mr. Lei created his Bilibili account, Mr. Lemon gave his welcome in a humorous way at once “Hello, everyone, Mr.Lei is coming, so I gotta run.” The comment received 54k likes.
Other Mi sub-accounts and Kingsoft accounts (Mr. Lei is also chairman of Kingsoft) welcomed Jun Lei too with a “Welcome, dad”. Communication is often quite humorous and down-to earth on Bilibili, which brands should note. Many other official accounts such as MSI and ASUS, welcomed Mr. Lei or made fun of the meme “are you ok?” creating quite a fun and harmonious atmosphere for the new arrival. In short, the simple action of creating the account was a free but powerful marketing exposure for Mi.
Prior to Jun Lei’s account, Mi had actively worked with ATRTC creators which had created strong buzz for the brand. Similarly, Alibaba created ATRTC videos during the outbreak, based on Jack Ma’s singing performance, receiving 2.5 million views. They alcom which brought much attention to Mi before as well.
Similar thing happened in Alibaba too. During epidemic, Alibaba group created an ATRTC video based on Jack Ma’s singing performance, which received 2.5m views.
Yet not everyone finds the ATRTC videos quite so fun. A video which found humour in mega pop idol Xukun Cai (KUN)’s performance combining dancing and basketball, was met with many lawyer’s letters from KUN, bringing him many anti-fans. This saw the rise of popular phrase “lawyer’s letter warning”.
Brands and individuals who embrace the genre, and remain down-to-earth, will connect and resonate with consumers, bringing positive and large exposure to their brands. DingTalk’s begging for mercy and Tencent vs Laoganma, are both a testament to this.