Rise of foreign stars in Chinese social media marks the beginning of a new trend

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China’s internet celebrity economy has expanded exponentially in recent years. According to a report released by iResearch, the number of online celebrities in China with more than 100,000 followers has increased by 57.3 percent since 2016.

With a single embedded ad in a WeChat post worth up to $145,000 USD for influencers with dedicated followings, and a total market estimated at $14 billion USD in 2018 by Beijing-based research agency Analysus, it’s a sizeable, attractive market for internet personalities.

Chinese internet celebrities have capitalized on these huge audiences and lucrative businesses, but foreigners have started to realize they can join in the fun.

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