Maimai social networking and career app China

Insider’s Guide to Maimai: The Chinese LinkedIn Alternative

Career and social networking hold significant importance in the Chinese business scene, especially for foreign B2B marketers seeking local company partners.

With the censorship of LinkedIn in China, Maimai emerged as a reliable social networking platform not only for job seekers but also for new brands trying to reach out to potential investors and connect with industry professionals.

The success of Maimai shows no signs of slowing down. So, read along as we share our honest thoughts about this social media platform and discuss how it can help your company thrive in China.


What is Maimai in China?

Mamai is often called the “Chinese LinkedIn” for providing customers with a multifaceted platform that integrates aspects of networking, job postings, and industry-specific communities.

Launched in 2013, Maimai was initially designed to cater to the needs of the Chinese job-hunting market. Over the years, the platform has extended its services to give Chinese users access to advanced social networking and career development tools.

The vast majority of today’s Maimai users identify as tech insiders. The ability to hide behind anonymous posts has led people to comfortably share daily gossip and news about their industry and workplace.


Maimai general pages


Unlike most social media platforms in China, Maimai’s anonymous features create a sense of security among existing and new users who want to vent or reveal issues about their workplace.

Although companies and investors may find the anonymity function quite daunting, it can also be such a blessing in disguise as it provides insight into how your potential clients view the business.

As you know, Chinese consumers are savvy shoppers. They’re most likely looking into every aspect of your brand before deciding if they’ll do business with you. Through a social networking app like Maimai, it has become easier to conduct a market study and observe what your competitors are doing.


Why did LinkedIn shut down in China?

Like Facebook and Google, LinkedIn announced the termination of its professional networking services locally due to its challenging operating and compliance requirements. On top of that, the company lost its foothold because of China’s segmented and fluctuating market nature.

The success of LinkedIn in the local industry also seems unclear, primarily due to the fierce competition among local platform alternatives.


LinkedIn job search

Photo by Bastian Riccardi from Pexels


Before LinkedIn terminated its services, the workplace networking platform garnered over 5.6 million local users. It only accounts for 0.4% of the country’s overall population.

Seeing how LinkedIn can’t compare to the current user base of Maimai or WeChat, the company has more than enough reason to doubt its success in China’s digital landscape.


The Rise of the Maimai Platform in the Post-LinkedIn Era

Even before LinkedIn’s exit in 2021, Maimai had already penetrated 83.8% of the professional networking market in China. It significantly outperforms LinkedIn China, as it only covers an 11.8% share of the overall industry during its peak.

With LinkedIn out of the picture, Maimai became not just the biggest China-based platform but also the leading professional networking platform in terms of user rate and engagement.


Demographic Profile of Maimai Users in the Chinese Market

According to the platform’s official website, Maimai has over 120 million users from different professions, industries, and companies. If you look at the graph below, you’ll notice that most of the traffic in Maimai mainly comes from male users, with only 24.73% being female. Gender User Distribution Gender User Distribution (Source:


It’ll also surprise you that jobs and employment are not the most popular categories within this local workplace networking app. Most Maimai users talk and engage with posts related to programming, developer software, technology, and computers. Age User Distribution Age User Distribution (Source:


Furthermore, Maimai users boast a high distribution among 25 to 34 age groups. This insight is not a surprise since most Chinese professionals are actively looking for jobs and building careers around this age.

Nevertheless, the statistics show that Maimai has quite a balanced age distribution among users 18 to 54 years old.


Key Features of Maimai Professional Networking Platform

1.    Community-Centric Networking Site

Maimai organizes its platform into various industry-specific communities. Because of this, company owners and managers can engage directly with professionals within their industry. It also ensures marketers can effectively network and share niche-specific trends and knowledge with the right audience.


2.    Anonymous Posting

A key feature of Maimai is that it allows individuals to search for jobs while keeping their identity hidden. It ensures users can explore new job opportunities without jeopardizing their current position in a company.


Anonymous posts on Maimai China


The platform’s unique feature of anonymous job searches also benefits businesses. It allows them to scout for talent discreetly, ensuring competitive advantage and confidentiality in their recruitment and networking strategies.


3.    AI-Powered Algorithm

Besides matching job listings to the best candidates, Maimai also employs sophisticated AI algorithms to streamline the recruitment process for brands by providing them with a curated list of candidates that align with the specific skills and experience they seek.

On top of that, the platform utilizes AI and big data analytics to help analyze user behavior and facilitate more effective networking for companies.


4.    Comprehensive User Profiles

On Maimai, users can go beyond just uploading a CV. They can build a complete profile and portfolio, enabling them to present a well-rounded picture of their professional life to prospective companies.

It also enables business owners to gain a more holistic view of potential candidates, assessing their suitability more effectively.


How to Use Mamai for Your Business in the China Market

●     Search Feature

Most social platforms in China have a built-in search engine to accommodate the needs of their users and enhance the engagement between brands and users. For this exact reason, Mamai integrates its system with a reliable search functionality.


Search features on Maimai China


It allows exploration across distinct categories, like names, job postings, anonymous postings, trend topics, and news updates.

This extensive range of resources enables companies to conduct thorough research, identify potential clients, and stay updated on industry trends and news.


●     VIP & Advertising Options

For more extensive engagement, this workplace networking site offers VIP accounts at approximately 70 CNY per month, which includes additional features not available to free accounts.

One significant advantage of VIP accounts is the increased access to search results and connections, allowing brands to expand their network more effectively.

Additionally, Maimai provides targeted advertising options, where ads are integrated based on user profiles, increasing the likelihood of engagement and shareability.

These advertising formats can be a mix of display and content ads, with each able to attract attention and influence targeted users’ purchasing decisions.


Types of ads on Maimai China


●     Live-streaming Features

Live streaming is increasingly popular among Chinese consumers. Because of this, this feature can be a powerful tool for brands promoting in Maimai.

By hosting workplace live streaming sessions, companies can build brand influence through interactive sessions like workplace insights, recruitment plazas, and other engaging activities.

These live events provide an immersive experience for potential clients and partners, fostering a deeper connection with the brand.


●     User-Generated Content

Creating and sharing top-notch content is crucial when using Maimai for your digital marketing strategies. However, engaging with and promoting user content, such as reviews, testimonials, and discussions, works better in enhancing your brand’s credibility and relatability within the market.

Utilizing UGC builds trust with users. As a result, it’ll also influence the purchasing decisions of Chinese consumers and enhance overall brand awareness.


Quick Q&A

Can you still access LinkedIn in China?

Technically, LinkedIn is no longer accessible locally. Due to the content censorship and advertising laws imposed by the Chinese government, the company was restricted. Although VPN presents itself as a quick solution, remember that it’s not officially legal in the country to use platforms that are barred by The Great Firewall policy.

What are the competitors of LinkedIn in China?

In China, LinkedIn’s competitors are Maimai, Douban, Dajie, and WeChat. Each of these sites offers unique professional networking opportunities. They also provide avenues to foster business connections and client outreach effectively.


Your Trusted Digital Marketing Partner in the Chinese Market!

With its unique blend of professional networking and social media features, Maimai offers a dynamic environment for businesses to engage with industry experts, expand their networks, and foster brand awareness.

However, as with any platform in China’s digital market, foreign marketers must approach Maimai with a deep understanding of its unique features and user behaviors. Our experienced team is here to guide you through every twist and turn, unlocking your brand’s full potential and ensuring resounding success in this dynamic landscape.


Sekkei Digital Group Services


From crafting compelling marketing campaigns to harnessing the power of SEO and social media, we provide the digital solutions you need to thrive. Contact us for assistance if you’re ready to elevate your marketing strategy!


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