China has been a regular topic in the news these days. With a population of over 1.4 billion, it's the most populated country in the world and has the second-largest economy, making it an ideal place for the pro-wrestling and MMA industries to utilize. According to a 2017 survey by the American business-focused newspaper The Wall Street Journal, about 140 million fans of WWE stars live primarily in China’s major cities- so the fan interest in combat sports is definitely there. It would be beneficial for combat sports organizations outside of China to expand their business to the Chinese market, or for members of the combat sports industry who live in China to create additional organizations. Considering the size of China's market, it could potentially become a large combat sports scene.
However, expanding a business to China or starting one there is not easy. The Chinese market is difficult to access due to the "Great Firewall", which are technologies and legislative actions that are enforced to limit access to international websites. There is also a regulatory and political risk that makes it difficult for foreign businesses to break into China. Considering all of this, networking is vital when it comes to doing business in China, so it's smart to form a relationship with a company based there, as opposed to attempting to succeed in China alone. And this is where Tanglang Media comes in.
Tanglang Media is a new global combat sports digital agency & consultancy that has the goal of helping combat sports organizations reach the Chinese audience and build their business in China, from the initial setup of the business to the distribution of the finished product.
SET UP ASSISTANCE
Tanglang Media will set up a business with a Public WeChat channel, Weibo account, and QZone to connect with their audience directly, just like all of the major brands in China do. This will give the business the opportunity to reach millions of new fans in China by establishing its social media presence on the Chinese Internet and will give the business the potential to drive massive growth. Tanglang Media's services extend to setting up internal payment options and e-commerce on China's leading online marketplaces. E-commerce plays a big role in China's strong economy.
Along with the assistance in setting up a business, Tanglang Media also offers consultation to their clients on how to best build and connect with their fans, guiding them every step of the way.
Tanglang Media has access to local news editors, hosts, and experienced Chinese pro-wrestling commentators. They also have access to a local video team. All of this can help give a product a genuine, "made in China" look, which would be appealing to its intended audience.
Tanglang Media has strong connections with the media and fan community and can aid with tours and press releases. It can also do search engine optimization for Baiudu.com, which is the world's largest search engine and covers 95% of global Chinese internet users.
Tanglang Media is knowledgeable regarding China's firewall guidelines, which enables them to operate within them efficiently so that a massive audience can be reached. China is home to the largest digital community in the world, with about 1.03 billion netizens, all using domestic platforms. Having an official presence on these platforms is important for a business' fans to connect with its brand and vice versa.
THE MIND BEHIND TANGLANG MEDIA
Born and raised in America, Tanglang Media President & Owner Adrian Gomez has been living in China for over a decade. Although Tanglang Media is a new company with plans of breaking barriers, Gomez already has broken many barriers during his time in China. He is also the founder and owner of Middle Kingdom Wrestling (MKW). I was made aware of it when MKW began running shows in July 2015, and at that time, there were only two other promotions in existence in China. They were owned by Chinese wrestlers. So not only was Gomez the third person in China's history to run pro-wrestling shows, but he was also the first foreigner to do it.
MIDDLE KINGDOM WRESTLING
In Middle Kingdom Wrestling's early days, its shows featured Asian talents such as LENBAI (who was trained in Japan as well as Taiwan) and Ho Ho Lun (who in recent years has been seen in WWE and AEW). MKW also featured talent from outside of Asia, such as MKW's first World Champion, American wrestler Dalton Bragg. Fans in attendance at their shows were not only witnessing a live pro-wrestling event featuring talent from outside of Asia for the first time, but they were witnessing live pro-wrestling for the first time ever. Gomez had taken advantage of the opportunity for a new promotion to be created in China and gain a fanbase for MKW.
While the wrestlers were talented and the fans were enthusiastic, the venues were small and the wrestlers were not well known. But in only three short years, things began to change. MKW went from having free shows in gyms and shopping malls to hosting events at the Harbin International Convention Exhibition & Sports Center, and the Xinqiao Culture and Art Center (with record-setting attendance). And it went from having shows only featuring stars in the making to presenting shows featuring well-established stars, such as Kongo Kong (who was an Impact Wrestling star at the time), Hibiscus Mii (who has wrestled in many major Japan-based promotions), and Zeda Zhang (who was fresh off a run in NXT). All of this has been accomplished in a country that doesn't have a large pro-wrestling scene.
Growing a wrestling promotion in a small wrestling scene was already a challenge, but it become even more of a challenge when the world was overcome by the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. Unable to have events in large venues or bring in talent from outside of China, MKW showed staying power by starting MKW Blast-off, an online studio-style show executive produced by Adrian Gomez, featuring MKW's homegrown Chinese wrestlers. MKW went back on the road last year, even having events in Shanghai, the biggest city in China.
Adrian Gomez understands the challenges of starting and maintaining a business in China because he has experienced them. And he has overcome them as well. Adrian Gomez intends to do the same for other businesses through Tanglang Media. They can be visited at TanglangMedia.com, and be connected with on their social accounts on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram.