More than 60% of Chinese youth want to become internet influencers, live streaming hosts: Survey

An anchor of New Oriental Education introduces products through an online live streaming platform.  Photo: Courtesy of New Oriental Education

An anchor of New Oriental Education introduces products through an online live streaming platform. Photo: Courtesy of New Oriental Education

In a recent survey on career orientation of Chinese youth, more than 60% of respondents said they would like to capitalize on opportunities in emerging industries such as internet influencer or internet live streaming industries. When media reports about the poll went viral on Monday, it sparked heated discussions on Chinese social media.

Some netizens attributed the result to the intense competition in the current job market, but, from a broader perspective, analysts said it reflects the open-mindedness and diversification trend among young people compared to older generations in the search for Work. The participation of more educated talent would also help improve the overall quality of the industry, analysts pointed out. Meanwhile, they urged young people to remain cautious when looking for work, noting that becoming an internet influencer isn’t as easy or lucrative as some young people think.

Conducted by the Sina Weibo platform, the survey received feedback from nearly 10,000 respondents. Another 38.4% of respondents said they would never consider becoming an internet influencer or live stream host.

This is a natural outcome considering the rapid development of live streaming and short video platforms in China, Zhou Haiwang, deputy director of the Population and Development Institute of the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences told the Global Times on Monday. . Zhou also pointed out that a market-oriented trend is taking hold in China’s employment field.

According to a report on China’s live streaming and short video industry released in May by the China Association for Performing Arts (CAPA), the industry’s revenue reached 199.2 billion yuan ($27.5 billion) in 2022 , up 8% year-on-year. .

In 2022, there were more than 150 million Internet host accounts, creating more than 100 million job opportunities. The number of job applications to China’s leading live streaming and short video platform companies surpassed 500,000 during the same period, according to the report.

In 2022 alone, 10.32 million new accounts were created on live streaming and short video platforms in the country, the report said.

Some analysts see young people eager to join the live-streaming and short-video industry as a positive sign that Chinese youth are breaking out of the shackles of traditional thinking that well-educated college graduates need to find a “bowl of iron rice” or “shining works”. in skyscrapers.” They are more open when looking for work, analysts say.

The participation of more college graduates will also improve the overall quality of workers in the industry, Chen Lixia, senior consultant for talent development, said media reports. He pointed to Dong Yuhui, a teacher and livestream host for New Oriental Education, as an example.

Dong became a big hit on the popular short video platform Douyin in June 2022 by introducing products in both Chinese and English. Many Chinese consumers said they never expected to be able to learn English while shopping online.

The bilingual host has grown in popularity, gaining more than 1.3 million fans in just three days, making cultural live streaming a trend in China.

Young people should be encouraged to look for more opportunities and jobs that match their interests, specialties or career plans. Along with the development of the live streaming and short video industry, some big companies are also forming their own live streaming teams, which leads to better development prospects for well-educated personnel in the industry, noted Zhou Haiwang.

However, Zhou urged young people to be cautious when looking for work and not to enter the industry just because it looks lucrative.

Indeed, it is not easy for any influencer to be successful.

According to the aforementioned CAPA report, 96.2% of people whose main source of income was live streaming hosting earned less than 5,000 yuan a month in 2022. Meanwhile, only 0.4% of Chinese live stream hosts live streaming can earn more than 100,000 yuan a month.

The industry dividend has been declining after the rapid development of previous years, and the industry has now entered a transition period from chaos to regulated management. Young people need rational thinking and long-term planning before entering the industry right now. They also need to enhance their various skills when working in the industry to seek better development in the future, analysts said.

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