By Henry Chen
Social media is now the most effective way of connecting to the world. This platform is used by personalities to bring them closer to their fans. Currently, Facebook is used by big names in Table Tennis like Zhang Jike, Ma Long, and Dimitrij Ovtcharov to have a wider reach to their international fans.
But some stars would also want to get the attention of the Chinese crowd. Why? It is because there is a demand and probably because Chinese are very active in the internet.
Weibo, the ultimate social media platform in China, is now widely used not just by the locals but by personalities from Japan and Korea Republic as well.
Two of those famous names are the Japanese Table Tennis players Ai Fukuhara and Kasumi Ishukawa.
Ai Fukuhara, currently ranked ninth in the world, is already popular. But the Chinese media allowed her to connect to more people. Because of that, Ai Fukuhara, a non-Chinese personality, made it into the top searched players during the Rio Olympic Games in Weibo.
The Japanese player opened her account last June 10 and now holds more than 100,000 followers. She follows seven people including Wang Nan, Ding Ning, Li Xiaoxia, Liu Shiwen, her coach Tang Yuanyuan, and CCTV reporter Li Wujun.
Recently, her teammate Kasumi Ishikawa also joined the Chinese social media. Witnessing Fukuhara updating her status during the Olympic Games, Ishikawa felt it could also be fun. Ishikawa is now becoming a hit among Chinese people with around 50,000 followers and counting.
Ishikawa follows 19 people. Among them are Ding Ning, Xu Xin, Wang Nan, Liu Shiwen, Li Xiaoxia, Ma Long, Zhang Jike, and Chen Meng among others. Ishikawa also followed other Chinese personalities outside sports.
“Thankful for the support of my Chinese fans. I am very happy,” wrote Ishikawa.