(Economic Observation) China's rural "advertising wall" witnesses economic changes over the past 30 years

  China News Service, Beijing, August 5

  Author Ding Yiheng

  What's the promise of painting walls in rural China?

But what if you visit all the rural areas of China...

  Recently, an interesting video has been followed: a master with only elementary school education, who has been painting walls in the countryside for 30 years, bought 6 apartments in the county town on his own.

His boss, Ren Aixin, went to an advertising company after graduating from a bachelor's degree in finance, and led the team in advertising in various villages, so that he was regarded as the "worst classmate in the class to find a job."

Today, his company has spread advertisements all over China.

  They have left a record of advertising that has been used for 30 years.

Wall painter Huang Xingxiang said that before 2015, most of his work was feed, farm tools, tobacco and alcohol, and then air conditioners, refrigerators, and cars appeared; after 2015, advertisers all changed to Internet companies.

  The pristine Master Huang Xingxiang may not realize that the walls in front of him have become the closest witnesses to the changes in the Chinese countryside and the sinking of the Internet.

Rural exterior wall advertising: business experience in unpopular businesses

  In 1989, Huang Xingxiang became a wall painter for the "advertisement wall" in the village.

At that time, the advertising walls were mainly agricultural products such as pesticides and fertilizers, as well as daily necessities such as toothpaste, liquor, and gas stoves.

For a long time, Huang Xingxiang was so monotonous and repeating his work.

  When Master Huang made his debut 30 years ago, the concept of “migrant workers” had just become popular throughout China. As young people in the village went to the city to work and send money back to their hometowns, building houses became a top priority for many in the village. There are more advertisements for building materials on the wall.

But at that time, the rural advertising wall was still a system of villages and towns, and Master Huang's business rarely went out of his hometown in Qingyuan, Guangdong.

  But the opportunity for the industry to "break the circle" soon appeared.

In 2008, the global financial crisis caused factories in the Yangtze River Delta, Pearl River Delta and other switch, electrical appliances, and clothing industries to export to domestic sales.

Thanks to the frenzied expansion of the business, Master Huang got on the plane and took on more and more frequent inter-provincial wall cleaning tasks.

Master Huang’s boss, Ren Aixin, had just graduated from university a few years ago and had an annual income of more than 100,000 yuan.

  The development of the Internet changes the Chinese countryside

  The 2008 financial crisis also gave birth to e-commerce, detonated the rapid development of China's Internet, and also changed the Chinese countryside.

When Taobao, an Internet company, first put an advertisement on the wall in 2013, no one realized that the extremely popular "Double 11" was actually fired on a wall in the countryside.

  Ren Aixin remembered that it came from a Taobao merchant in Suichang County, Zhejiang Province.

This was a successful attempt. Some netizens took photos and posted them on social networks. The local advertising slogans like "Think about life well, hurry up on Taobao" and mix and match the fashionable Internet quickly.

E-commerce platforms such as JD.com, Suning, Dangdang, and Vipshop have followed suit, "competing" for rural walls and setting off the first wave of the sinking of the Internet.

  The rapid development of national infrastructure is also projected onto the wall.

The advertisements of China Telecom, China Mobile, and China Unicom once spread all over the world.

Smart phones have also replaced the three traditional home appliances as the sweet pastry of China's rural advertising walls: You can see what young people do with their mobile phones by looking at the walls in the countryside.

  Digital public services sink the countryside

  When the time comes to 2018, the wall-painting advertisements in rural China have quietly switched from sinking products to sinking services.

The most obvious is the digital public service: Nowadays, people in the city can do things on their mobile phones, and so are the people in the village.

  On the eve of May 1st this year, Zhigu Trends visited more than ten of the most remote counties in China and found that in the Ali area of ​​Tibet, where China was last connected to the State Grid, locals could already pay electricity bills on Alipay; the last one in China In Medog, Tibet, the county seat of the highway, what the local people say most when paying is "You sweep me or I sweep you"?

  The home field of China's financial inclusion has become increasingly clear and firmly locked in the Chinese countryside.

The Postal Savings Bank of China, which is most commonly seen on rural advertising walls, is called China's "best sinking bank".

Internet banks have also applied technology to new areas. For example, the "satellite loan" of online merchant banks can use satellite remote sensing to determine key information such as land area and crop growth of farmers applying for loans as a basis for loans.

  Young people return to the countryside to bring new changes

  After 30 years of painting the walls, Master Huang is now witnessing young people returning to the countryside.

  According to data released by the National Bureau of Statistics in April this year, China's migrant workers entering cities will decline for the first time in 2020.

Real estate advertisements then entered the village to welcome the new outlet for commercial housing in the county.

  More and more jobs are sinking to the entrance of the village.

Zhang Xinghua, 27, works as an Alipay online customer service at his hometown in Hongdong, Shanxi. He works eight hours a day and earns more than 3,000 yuan a month, which is slightly higher than the average income of the central and western counties, and he can also take care of the baby.

Liu Huanmei works as an artificial intelligence trainer in her hometown in Qingjian, Shaanxi. He “trains” artificial intelligence to become smarter and smarter by marking pictures, text, and videos.

  In the past decade, the gap between China's urban and rural areas has gradually narrowed.

  In terms of daily consumption, the most popular brands and products are synchronized in urban and rural areas at any time.

  In terms of lifestyle, new work forms and new employment opportunities, such as online cloud customer service, artificial intelligence annotators, e-commerce live broadcasts, etc., allow people to work anywhere.

  In terms of public services, the most remote residents can use their mobile phones to register for medical treatment and handle administrative affairs such as household registration.

  In terms of financial services, rural areas are becoming a new world of technological innovation for major programmers. Farmers who have no credit records and no collateral can also receive financial support.

  New life, new job, new youth, although the advertising wall in the countryside has gradually faded away, the Chinese countryside is becoming more and more lively, younger and better.