HOW TO GET AHEAD: WORKING ABROAD ... CHINA - To take away a good deal you’ll need bags of cash to spice up proceedings

China is a very complex media market, as Motive’s international group director James Greet discovered during stints for Saatchi & Saatchi and Zenith Media.

China is a very complex media market, as Motive’s international

group director James Greet discovered during stints for Saatchi &

Saatchi and Zenith Media.



’My first experience of China was dealing with an angry American from

Proctor & Gamble, who had a problem with airtime we had bought in

Tianjin.



My first question once I’d put down the phone was ’where’s Tianjin?’



’China is huge and in 1994 it had one of the most disorganised media

systems in the world. There were national TV channels as well as

separate channels for each province and city. We had no ratings data so

no way of knowing if our spots were actually broadcast.



’There was also the combination of a demanding client (P&G), lots of

graduates and a lack of trained media practitioners.



’One TV station was showing Baywatch so we bought three months of

airtime. Unfortunately, they decided to show it twice a night for three

weeks solid.



’At the time, the most desired airtime was on CCTV1, the main national

channel. To buy the airtime you had to turn up at its office with a bag

of money and queue. Once we even queued overnight. Sometimes the Chinese

media brokers would bring their heavies along to ensure they got on

air.’



Tell us about your time working overseas. Phone Mark Tungate on 0208-267

4702 or e-mail him at mark.tungate@haynet.com.



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