Clear Channel, BlueFocus Promote Chinese Brands In Times Square, SF Airport

In recent years, a handful of Chinese companies -- including computer giant Lenovo and appliance maker Haier -- have taken the world by storm, but other Chinese brands with global ambitions still suffer from low awareness in the West, including the U.S.

BlueFocus Communications Group -- a leading Chinese advertising, media, and PR firm -- is setting out to change that through a partnership with Clear Channel Outdoor, which will promote Chinese brands with high-profile digital out-of-home ads in New York City’s Times Square and San Francisco International Airport.
Under the terms of the deal, BlueFocus will promote various Chinese brands (as yet unnamed) using Clear Channel Outdoor’s Spectacolor displays in Times Square, and Clear Channel Airports’ displays in major U.S. airports, beginning with SFO and New York’s metro airports. BlueFocus is managing the project through a new company, Beijing Blueskyfall Media Advertising Co., created for this purpose.
This is the first in a series of initiatives to help BlueFocus clients connect with U.S. consumers via strategic marketing and media partnerships, according to President Peter Mao, who stated: “An increasing number of Chinese cities and commercial brands are eying global markets. We recognize their needs for building brands globally, and the U.S. market is essential to the success of any brand with global aspirations.”
Mao added: “We chose Clear Channel Outdoor as our partner because of their leadership position in the most important U.S. markets, including New York’s Times Square, their comprehensive portfolio of solutions, and because of their pioneering success creating consumer engagement with social media and other digital platforms.”
Although the partners did not name specific brands that will be promoted, they will include companies in categories including tourism, consumer brands, and entertainment, according to a separate report in Ad Age.
In addition to handling advertising in China for foreign brands, including Volkswagen, Subaru, Microsoft, Samsung, Olympus and Pepsi, BlueFocus’ Chinese clients include major companies like Lenovo, China Mobile, Baidu and Tencent Games, among others.
While American consumers may be hazy on Chinese brands, Wall Street investors are sure to recognize one big name -- Alibaba -- as the Chinese e-commerce giant tests the waters for an IPO supposed to occur sometime in the second half of the year, and widely anticipated to be one of the biggest stock market debuts in history.
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