Meet… Simin Zheng, Ad Operations, China
Our bi-lingual China team at MiQ has a passion for programmatic but who are the people working hard for our clients? We’ve placed the spotlight on our great team members, Jerry Li, Simin Zheng, Jia-Long Ye and Sihan Ding.
Let’s meet… Simin.
I am an Ad Operations Executive in our China team, based in MiQ’s London office. In my role, I manage asset trafficking with our Chinese platforms, streamline technical campaign components and support our clients to ensure their ad copy is impactful and resonates with Chinese audiences. Much of my work is to make our client’s lives just that little bit easier. And that’s what I enjoy most, meeting clients and supporting them get the most from their programmatic investment in China.
I grew up in Chengdu, located in the Sichuan Province of China. After high school I moved to Wuhan, to follow my passion and study fashion design at Wuhan Textile University, but the work experience that would follow took me in a slightly different direction.
After graduation, I took a role in the marketing department of a record label. We were heavily involved in digital media, pushing new launches and our services across social platforms including WeChat and Weibo. It provided the foundation for me to better understand China’s digital advertising ecosystem.
At the time, programmatic advertising was taking off. We hadn’t tried it before but decided to give it a go, to promote and sell our new products through e-commerce platforms. The results were unexpectedly welcome, we generated twice as much sales and revenue from our programmatic campaigns than we’d anticipated. It intrigued me and I’ve taken an interest in the programmatic advertising industry ever since.
In 2019, I moved to London and undertook a Masters degree in Creative and Cultural Entrepreneurship at Goldsmiths, University of London. I learned all about consumer behavior, and different business models, with much of it centred around the trends and preferences of Asian international students.
Why China? Why MiQ?
I knew I wanted to stay in London after my Masters, and I knew I wanted to work in a role where I could use my Chinese heritage paired with my academic experience and passion for digital advertising. That was my job criteria. During my search, I saw that MiQ had an opening in their China Ad Operations team. At that time, I didn’t know much about ad operations, but I’d stayed close to all the latest and greatest in the programmatic advertising space.
When choosing my next role what set MiQ apart from my other options was the company culture and values. It’s important to me that a company’s culture is in line with my preferred work environment, MiQ exceeded my expectations. For that reason, I took the job.
MiQ respects people from all walks of life and truly embraces inclusion and diversity. During my interview process I remember being asked questions like: what would my friends say about me? Tell us about yourself, without references to your work experiences. I could tell the company wanted something more than just hard-skills, more than just a resume filled with top grades from top universities. They wanted to ascertain if I’d be a good fit, and would be able to add to the company culture, whether I was passionate to learn and determined to go beyond. Moreover, they wanted to know if MiQ would offer me the best place for me to grow and dream big. They had my best interests at heart.
Since day one, everyone I’ve met at MiQ are interesting souls, all uniquely talented at what they do and what they bring to the table. Also timing worked in my favour, when I started our China team was expanding with new team members and our client base had grown 400% year over year. New people bring fresh perspectives and new clients bring exciting new challenges.
The China day to day
Fast forward to today, I start most of my mornings by reading through China’s asset trafficking requests on our Jira board, taking the priority tickets and those with the nearest deadlines. My first step is always to check their creative specifications, China is particularly fragmented when it comes to creative specifications, yet to develop levels of standardization like we’ve become accustomed to in the West. Getting creatives right or wrong in China is often the difference between a successful campaign or not, and the determining factor in whether our clients meet the specifications of the most important apps and publishers in China.
We’ve made a conscious effort to enable clients to maintain many of their global ad operations best practices in China. We’ve struck partnerships in China to permit ad tracking via Google Campaign Manager, and many other Western ad servers, so our clients can independently measure delivery and the metrics they normally do, even in China. So I spend a lot of my time embedding impression 1x1s and click tags in our China creatives. I also implement anti ad fraud solutions to measure and preemptively mitigate ad fraud through our integrated pre-bid partnerships with our preferred ad verification vendor RTBAsia and our Chinese DSPs.
I provide clients feedback on their creative messaging and ad copy. Consumers in China are sensitive to signs of adaptation from global brands. It’s important that a global brand’s message and tone is translated in a manner that will resonate with Chinese tradition and culture. Creative can often be overlooked in a data-driven programmatic world, so I enjoy imparting my wisdom and background to help our clients strike the right balance in China to get the most of their programmatic investment.
The future looks bright
The programmatic market in China is growing, and I’m excited to grow with it. With the easing of UK lockdown restrictions I’ve been fortunate to meet our clients and partners in person, to build personal rapports. I get a tremendous amount of satisfaction and sense of fulfilment when I know I’ve helped them to get better results, uncover insight that otherwise wouldn’t have been found, or just to make the process of launching new campaigns simpler, all through my day to day work in ad operations.
But above all, I am proud to be part of the China team. We’re all super passionate about the opportunities the Chinese market presents our global clients, and motivated by the role each of us play in making the Chinese market addressable from anywhere in the world. Long may it continue!
上善若水，水善利万物而不争 – The highest good is just like water, which nourishes all things without dispute.
Find out how Simin can help your brand reach Chinese audiences here.