Working with The Phenomenal Mi, Who is with Me?

Last week (01/04), on April Fools’ Day (I am not saying this is relevant), the day known as the day to play practical jokes and and spread hoaxes, Xiaomi (Mi) launched its latest devices in Indonesia. With obviously no fake stories involved, Redmi 2 and Mi Pad officially is now available in the Indonesian market.

This launch was somewhat special for everyone – Mi-watchers or not. Why you’d ask? It was five years ago this April that Lei Jun founded the company. And each year, it gets even more special. As part of this year’s anniversary, Redmi 2 flash sale was held on April 8 at Lazada.co.id. That was obviously a huge success, with 40.000 units of Redmi 2 sold in less than an hour! Hugo Barra, one of my favourite clients ever, tweeted the good news. The sale date is also coincide with the global Mi Fan Festival, which was also a huge success! Xiaomi reportedly sold 2.12 million smartphones and recorded a revenue of RMB2.08 billion in a single day. Halfway through the day at 4:04p.m., Xiaomi announced that the day’s revenue had reached RMB1.57 billion, surpassing the full-day results of both Mi Fan Festival 2014 and Singles Day (one of China’s major shopping spree days) 2014.

Praxis has had the privilege to work with Xiaomi since August 2014, when we helped launch its first product, the mighty Redmi 1S, into the market. Less than a year later, on April 1, 2015, Praxis assisted Xiaomi usher in Redmi 2. Journalists, bloggers, and fans were so excited about the Redmi 2 that they didn’t see what was coming next. Hugo than revealed that Xiaomi is also launching the powerful yet affordable Mi Pad into the market.

If you didn’t know this, Mi is a company that has a huge loyal fan base (Mi Fan), as Xiaomi’s relationship with its fans is particularly unique. Wall Street Journal story this week noted, Xiaomi regularly hosts parties, invites hundreds of (unpaid) fans to launch events — while it maintains an active forum, solicits feedback and pushes out weekly software updates based on interaction with users. I could go on and on about Mi Fan, but I am going to shift the focus back on the event I mentioned earlier (perhaps I’ll dedicate a post only on Mi Fan soon.)

The 12-hour-long Mi Fan Festival proved that Xiaomi is truly an Internet company with a unique business and communication model to reach its customers. During the festival, the company also sold a variety of products other than smartphones. Over 38,000 Mi TVs and over 770,000 smart appliances were sold, including 200,000 Mi Bands and 247,000 Mi Power Strips. In fact, revenue from accessories stood at RMB190 million after 12 hours. Xiaomi also demonstrated its commitment to fast delivery, with 500,000 orders shipped in 12 hours and the first order reaching a customer at 11.27a.m. – just 1 hour 27 minutes into the sale. In total, 3.05 million orders were made online over the course of 12 hours. In 2014, Xiaomi sold 61.12 million smartphones and recorded total revenue of RMB74.3 billion. Analyst firm IDC ranked Xiaomi as the top smartphone vendor in China last year.

Not impressed yet?

With this year achievement, Xiaomi had achieved the “Most mobile phones sold on a single online platform within 24 hours” from Guiness World Record!

 

Praxis - Mi2

Xiaomi’s executives with Guinness World Record representatives in Beijing

For those of you who reads this and think of the “Chinese Apple.” I gotta say, client or not, I have become Xiaomi’s fans, and I am equally impressed by its products as well as its business strategy. And for those of you who still bitter about its success, I hope one day you take off your Apple-colored glasses and sees the world for what it is.

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