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Bilibili highlights shift in user demographics, strength in documentaries

Written by Robert Published on 

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More older viewers, and more joy for documentaries.

Bilibili, one of China’s biggest video platforms, says its user base is broadening across age groups, and also highlighted the popularity of documentaries on its platform.

Traditionally popular among Gen Z Chinese netizens, Bilibili is welcoming more users born in the 1970s and ’80s, says company CEO Chen Rui. He picked two statistics to portray the platform’s shifting age range and location demography, though the data paints an incomplete picture of the points made.

First, less than 10% of Bilibili’s user base was over 25 years old in 2016, while today 78% of the platform’s users are between the ages of 18 and 35. Secondly, 54.3% of Bilbili’s new users in in the first quarter came from third- or fourth-tier areas in China, while in 2016, 56% of users were in tier-1 cities.

The company’s COO Yi Xun also said the Bilibili features more than 20 million documentaries. Though it isn’t built explicitly for documentary films—it’s a broad-based video platform in the vein of YouTube—people are flocking to the platform in search of such content.

Yi says Bilibili currently counts 21.66 million documentaries, while daily traffic for this content category has increased 264% year-on-year, with audience numbers up 253%.

“It’s not known for documentaries, but people use it in that way. I even watched a documentary on Bilibili last night,” says Nigel Leung, a UX designer at Weibo.

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