TouTiao’s Great Ambition: Becoming the Largest Incubator Of We-Media Owners

“My wish is to make TouTiao the largest incubator of high-quality articles in Chinese-speaking regions, even around the world.”

(Chinese Version)

The golden time of WeChat public account has already passed, while the best time for we media perhaps only begins. While Baidu promises to pay huge dividends to we-media owners on its own we-media platform Baidu Baijia, TouTiao follows suit and vows to reward we-media owners on its platform generously, too.

On September 9th, TouTiao announced that it would spend huge sum of money in building up an incubator for we-media owners so as to better encourage them to write more high-quality articles. Zhang Yiming, the founder and CEO of Toutiao, suggests that while we-media owners are rewarded based on the read times of their posts on platforms such as WeChat public account and Baidu Baijia, TouTiao will reward we-media owners as long as their posts are read by users.

“My wish is to make TouTiao the largest incubator of high-quality articles in Chinese-speaking regions, even around the world,” Zhang Yiming joked.

According to TouTiao’s official statistics, over 35,000 we-media owners have signed up accounts on TouTiao since the beginning of 2014. At the same time, the number of TouTiao we-media accounts is increasing at 20% to 30% on a month-to-month basis. Up to now, there are already 300 million registered users on TouTiao, and the daily total read times have already reached 510 million, among which 73% is from TouTiao we-media accounts.

On August 26th, Zhang Yiming shared his insights into the Internet industry in the article Zhang Yiming: Five Tips On Choosing Your Future Employers In The Internet Age. The article was spread so wide that Zhang Yiming became more certain about the huge potential of grass roots we-media owners. As a matter of fact, the majority of TouTiao we-media accounts’ owners are ordinary people, but as insightful as professional journalists.

However, to “make TouTiao the largest incubator of high-quality articles in Chinese-speaking regions, even around the world”, TouTiao will have to provide enough incentives, to we-media owners, including huge-sum rewards, an accurate recommendation algorithm and an incubator for we-media owners.

Zhang Yiming added that TouTiao would roll out a “1,000 TouTiao we-media accounts and 10,000 RMB iincome” plan. To be more specific, TouTiao is going to help 1,000 TouTiao we-media accounts‘ owners earn at least 10,000 RMB per month in the coming year, as well as members of 100 WeChat media groups to earn at least 10,000 RMB per month. We-media owners whose TouTiao we-media accounts are chosen by TouTiao in the plan will be able to deliver posts directly to their fans, get their articles posted on the home page of TouTiao app and earn at least 20,000 RMB per month.

“In the age of print media, articles are recommended by editors, in the age of WeChat and Weibo, articles are spread across friends circle, but in the age of big data, articles should be delivered to users based on a complicated recommendation algorithm to users who are most likely to be interested,” Zhao Tian, vice president of TouTiao explained at the press conference.

How about the incubator for we-media owners? Sounds like good news for small-scale we-media teams, isn’t it? Zhang Yiming explained that TouTiao would do everything it could to help small and mid-scale we-media teams lower cost in their earlier development, such as providing cheap but as comfortable work place, offering legal, financial and copyright counselling services. Moreover, TouTiao has already collaborated with 10 well-known venture capitals (including Sequoia, SIG, IDG, BAI, Innovation Works, ZhenFund, China Renaissance K2 Ventures, etc.) over the project. Up till now, TouTiao we-media accounts such as “cylbnc” and “duhaoshu” have already received huge-sum investment from venture capitals.

Zhang Yiming seemed to be quite confident about TouTiao’s future, and isn’t afraid of the fierce competition from two established we-media platforms Baidu Baijia and WeChat public account. Proud of the accurate recommendation algorithm, he believed that TouTiao could be pretty attractive for new we-media owners. He also suggests that TouTiao would never get into fights with other we-media platforms and would be always encouraging originality, which, for sure, is good news for any we-media owners.


[The article is published and edited with authorization from the author @Han Pei, please note source and hyperlink when reproduce.]

Translated by Levin Feng (Senior Translator at ECHO), working for TMTpost.

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