CK Hutchison has allied with China’s leading image processing and social sharing platform Meitu to build a brand-new business model integrating social media and retail.
The new social media platform will combine beauty with social media, in partnership with Hutchison’s Hong Kong subsidiaries AS Watson Group, the cosmetics and healthcare retailer, and telco ‘3’.
In a statement, the companies said the cooperation will bring together the many facets of user experience, user system, technology research and development, precision marketing, and big data.
“Leveraging Meitu’s artificial intelligence technology and CK Hutchison’s expertise in retail and telecom, the alliance will bring a refreshing and interactive online and offline shopping experience to customers of the millennial generation,” said Canning Fok, group co-MD at CK Hutchison.
“This partnership further enhances our customer connectivity, improving CK Hutchison’s online and offline interaction with customers. Meitu users can try beauty products virtually on their mobile phone and get product recommendation through advanced artificial intelligence.”
He said the project will both expand the Watson’s customer base in China and Hong Kong and enhance the shopping experience.
“3 Hong Kong customers can design personalised products and enjoy a new, one-stop mobile shopping experience through our cooperation with Meitu. We are confident of this partnership and believe that it will create a three-way win for customers, Meitu and CK Hutchison,” he said.
Meitu COO Bryan Cheng added: “With a huge number of female online users from Meitu and strong female customer base from CK Hutchison, the partnership can further improve the value of Meitu’s user platforms while combining beauty with social media, strengthening the connection and interaction with our customers as well as making them look more beautiful.”
Meitu and 3 Hong Kong will partner to introduce MeituDIY customisation service to Hong Kong, and 3’s customers will be the first to experience this one-stop value added service to create personalised products.
After editing photos through the Hong Kong version of the Meitu app, users can print their photos directly on mobile phone cases, clothes, umbrellas, cloth bags, cups and mouse pads, creating unique personalised products and presenting them as gifts to relatives and friends.
Watson’s Hong Kong will introduce Meitu’s Magic Mirror which offers around 600 makeup products from international brands. Backed-up by big data technology, customers can try different makeup looks, download the previews and try on products while enjoying the online and offline shopping experience anytime, anywhere.
Meitu’s Magic Mirror will debut at Watsons Mongkok Bank Centre and Cameron Road stores late this month, before being rolled out in about 30 more Watsons stores in the first half of next year.
Meitu’s BeautyCam app has also been upgraded to make product recommendations via skin analysis, helping to match users with the right products available at Watsons stores. This feature will be activated in Mainland China this month, while Hong Kong users can enjoy the feature in the first quarter of next year.
“The BeautyCam app is a professional one-stop-solution for beauty enthusiasts to know the needs of their skin, and at the same time effectively increase the transaction value of Watsons customers,” said a Watson’s spokesperson in a statement.
Watsons China will begin its cooperation with Meitu Social Media later this month, enabling the retailer to get closer to its target customers by delivering tailor-made messages.
Watsons China will launch an official account on Meitu social media in November. When customers edit their photos using features like “face-lift” and “acne-removal”, Watsons will recommend products that suit each customer’s needs.
“This allows us to match customers with the right products available at its stores, driving consumer conversions. Through Meitu social media, Watsons can interact with users by encouraging word-of-mouth recommendations on Watsons products. As a result, users can browse hot items and related information online.”
The cooperation between Watsons China’s loyalty programme and Meitu will bring mutual benefits to both parties, riding on the collective network of Meitu’s 350 million monthly active users and quality customers from Watsons online and offline channels.
“The strategic alliance unfolds opportunities in recruiting new loyalty members, and brings more transaction by recommending the right products according to big data and user habits and behaviours in the Meitu app.
To attract more new members, Watsons China will promote their joint membership card through its online and offline platforms while the Meitu app will encourage its users to become Watsons members,” the companies said.