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Building the CIFTIS International Brand and Leading an External Business Publicity Flagship – Review and Prospect for External Publicity of CIFTIS in the First Half of 2016

As the first specialized fair for trade in services in the world, CIFTIS is not only an important stage for deepening international economic & trade exchanges and cooperation, but also an important carrier for establishing the international image of Beijing and building a Chinese service brand. Through four sessions of cultivation and development, the international participation degree, attention degree and attraction of CIFTIS have been continuously increased. It has become a new window and a new flagship for external publicity in the business field.

From May 28 to June 1, 2016, the fourth CIFTIS was successfully held in Beijing. It was CIFTIS’s debut after its holding circle was adjusted. As a window of China's service industry open to the outside world and a platform deepening the international cooperation of trade in services, this CIFTIS attracted 171,000 person-times of foreign merchants from 126 countries and regions, achieved fruitful results, and gave full play to the role of a leading fair for trade in services raised in [2015] G.F. No. 8.

Since the first half of 2016, under the guidance and help of the Publicity Department of the Municipal Party Committee, the Municipal External Publicity Office, etc., the Organizing Committee of CIFTIS has actively gone deep into the highlights of the fair, continued to enrich publicity contents, striven to make innovations on display means, and effectively enhanced media services, thereby vigorously expanding the overseas publicity of the fourth CIFTIS and playing an active role in building the CIFTIS international brand and promoting the going global of “Beijing Services”.

II. Seizing strategic opportunities and fully strengthening overseas publicity

While focusing on the positioning of a leading fair for trade in services and firmly grasping “the Belt and Road”, Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei coordinated development, expanded opening of the service industry and other national development strategies, the organizing committee elaborately planned the publicity work scheme of the fourth CIFTIS and promoted overseas publicity reports in an all-around way. They specifically include working with China Radio International to broadcast the special introduction and news reports of CIFTIS in overseas radio stations; establishing a special edition for CIFTIS in China Daily, and gathering the hotspots and highlights of the fair to carry out publicity and display; carrying out publicity and reports in the Overseas Edition of China Daily; conducting the special planning reports for CIFTIS in Hong Kong Ta Kung Pao, Hong Kong Wen Wei Po and Hong Kong Commercial Daily, focusing on and displaying CIFTIS’s new achievements and new development trends of trade in services. According to public opinion monitoring, there are 298 registered media companies and 1,206 persons at the fourth CIFTIS, and 815 original news reports have been formed, including 682 domestic media reports and 133 overseas media reports. The accumulated reprint quantity of reports reaches nearly 5,000. The third-party evaluation shows the quantity of reports on the fourth CIFTIS carried out by overseas and new media exceeds the sum of that on the previous three CIFTIS.

II. Firmly grasping important time points and timely creating momentum for promotion

The publicity momentum is created by means of firmly grasping the news publicity rule and focusing on important time points. In such important time points as 300-day, 200-day, 100-day, 60-day, 30-day, 10-day and 5-day countdowns of the fourth CIFTIS, the publicity highlights including the special edition and special reports titled “Four ‘Styles’ of CIFTIS”, “Mobile APP of CIFTIS Lunched”, “The Fourth CIFTIS Focusing on Expanded Opening of Service Industry”, “CIFTIS Setting Up Guest Countries of Honor and Guest Provinces of Honor for the First Time”, “Focusing on Beijing, Contacting the World” etc. were planned to be launched. During the fair, Reuters publicized and reported CIFTIS in the Finance Channel of Reuters’ official website, and the Washington Post launched a special report titled “Beijing Opens Doors to Global Partners at Service Fair” in its special edition China Watch; a report by Ta Kung Pao points out that CIFTIS has become a bright icon and a high-quality platform for global trade in services. In addition, a lot of overseas media such as NPO 1, RTVE, the Malaysian National News Agency (BERNAMA), the Serbian National News Agency, the Pan-African News Agency, Ekotrent and Hong Kong Commercial Daily paid extensive attention to, publicized and reported CIFTIS, fully elevated CIFTIS’s awareness and reputation, and especially increased its influence in overseas countries & regions and the field of trade in services.

III. Firmly grasping the publicity characteristics of the era, and carrying out recommendation and release by multiple means and multiple channels  

First, mobile APP, Twitter and other new media are used for domestic and overseas publicity for the first time. Mobile APP has been developed and released for the first time. It provides a number of services concerning registration queries, requirement release, etc. for exhibitors and foreign merchants, and has obtained praise from them. For the first time, new media like Twitter has been released, which carries out real-time information pushing regarding the fair, and has aroused a strong response at abroad. According to the Report on the Global Internet Communication Effect Data of the 2016 Fourth “CIFTIS” published by a third party, the information release of the overseas Internet platform of this CIFTIS is dominated by Twitter which accounts for 68.82%. The report still holds that CIFTIS has become an important window for Twitter users to have an understanding of China’s economy.

Second, the new media platform linkage is enhanced, with the strong coverage of mobile terminals. The WeChat official accounts and mobile clients of such big media as the People’s Daily, the Xinhua News Agency, CRI and the China Daily, as well as a number of communication channels including the network media group of the Office of the Central Leading Group for Cyberspace Affairs and the “Beijing Release” double-WeChat platform of the Municipal External Publicity Office have been used to achieve the content integration and resource sharing of CIFTIS’s official website, double-WeChat, Facebook, Twitter and other new media platforms, with the addition of the following, forwarding, push of CIFTIS-related contents, and to form good publicity momentum within the scope of mobile terminals. BTV has utilized WeChat and other new media platforms and some new technologies like VR to show the spectacular condition of CIFTIS in a panoramic way, and to form strong publicity momentum. During the fourth CIFTIS, the accumulated number of Weibo topics is up to 300,000.  

Third, with full mobilization, the offline special recommendation is completed. By means of holding the group organization work conference of international regions, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan, the publicity plans and work arrangements of the fourth CIFTIS have been specially introduced, and 32 international group organizations and organizations from Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan have been required to establish an awareness of publicity and display and to strengthen overseas publicity and promotion. One week before the beginning of the fair, the fourth CIFTIS press conference was held in the Ministry of Commerce. Qiu Lixin, Director of the Department of Trade in Services, the Ministry of Commerce, and Yan Ligang, Director of Beijing Municipal Commission of Commerce, attended the conference, and respectively introduced the development situations of China’s trade in services and the characteristics & highlights of this CIFTIS. Besides, they answered the questions of common concern for domestic and overseas media. Nearly one hundred media agencies such as the Xinhua News Agency, the People’s Daily, the China Daily, Ta Kung Pao and the Hong Kong Commercial Daily actively participated in reports, thereby, creating a good public opinion atmosphere at home and abroad for the fourth CIFTIS.  

IV. Firmly grasping concentrated preheating interviews before the fair, and elaborately planning highlighted reports

By means of elaborate planning and organization, 30 concentrated preheating interviews and 7 high-end exclusive interviews of the fourth CIFTIS have been successfully completed. The media has been specially organized to carry out concentrated interviews for the Meeting of International Business Leaders Advisory Council for the Mayor of Beijing, the China International Tourism Commodities Fair, the Finance Expo, etc. integrated into the CIFTIS, reflecting the fusion effect of the fair. In the concentrated interview process, over 40 domestic/overseas and industrial media agencies such as the Xinhua News Agency, the China News Service, the People's Daily, CRI, the China Daily,, the International Business Daily, the Beijing Daily and BTV visited the domestic and overseas organizers, enterprises, embassies, etc. attending the fair to introduce the condition of the fair organization, to release the highlights thereof, to tell stories about signing of contracts, and to share specific cases, allowing the media to have a good understanding of the latest development trend of trade in services as well as the infinite business opportunities and market potential of CIFTIS.

The fourth CIFTIS has been successfully concluded. The activity preparation of 2017 has been included in a schedule. At present, the Organizing Committee Office of CIFTIS has begun planning the activity scheme of 2017. In order to complete the publicity activities of CIFTIS in 2017, the Organizing Committee Office of CIFTIS will carry out work from the following aspects: first, planning in advance, ensuring the publicity continuity of CIFTIS, and providing services for establishing a never-ending online CIFTIS; second, grasping the publicity pace of CIFTIS, timely optimizing the function setting of the official website, updating the information content of the official website, and elevating the publicity pertinence and effectiveness of the official website; third, further strengthening media cooperation, solidifying the cooperative relationship with the mainstream media, widening the cooperation channels with the professional media, and further promoting the effect of publicity and reports; fourth, going deep into the publicity advantages of such domestic and overseas new media as Facebook, Twitter, WeChat and Weibo, and enhancing the domestic & overseas publicity and promotion of CIFTIS by the new media.