How many possibilities can Ma Dong find for Mi Wei?

Editor’s note: This article is from the micro-channel public number “Heike Finance” (ID: haikecaijing), Author: Fan Dongcheng.

It’s been more than two months since the seventh season of “Wonderful Flowers” started broadcasting, but its popularity is not even as hot as Xu Zhiyuan’s few paragraphs in the latest season of “Tucao Conference”.

Although Yang Mi and Song Dandan helped out in the seventh season, BBking Chen Ming and Professor Liu Qing continued to output content in the fifth season, Xiao Xiao, Jiang Sida and other old strange flowers returned to the stage, and ideal car CEO Li was also invited to the show at the end of February. Wang Xiaochuan, CEO of Sogou, and other Internet tycoons acted as debaters, but the program has so far not attracted the attention of a wider audience. The number of people scoring it on Douban is more than 20,000, which was more than 60,000 in the previous season.

Actually, at the iQiyi World Conference two years ago, Ma Dong mentioned that he had been thinking about “Wonderful Flowers” or whether he should continue to do it. At that time, the PPT behind Ma Dong listed the audience’s various complaints about “Qihua Shuo”.

This may be a bottleneck for a variety show to “should have” when it reaches the seventh season, but for viewers who have witnessed the ever-changing public opinion environment since the birth of “Wonderful Story” in 2014, and for “Wonderful Story” in 2020 For those who know a little about the storm that happened at the beginning of the year, there seems to be a deeper reason for its gradual silence.

In any case, as Miwei Media’s first cultural product to achieve continuous success, the ebb of “Wonderful Flowers” means a certain kind of crisis. It can be seen that since its establishment in 2015, Miwei has developed many successful programs, creating a wonderful story of several billions of advertising investment. But for the moment, in addition to “Wonderful Talk”, the only program under Miwei’s that has achieved continuous success is “Band’s Summer” produced in 2019, and when it comes to the degree of break-through, it is also similar to “Wonderful Talk”. distance.

As a content company that started from the long video platform iQiyi, and then independently explored in the field of Internet synthesis, and then became increasingly diversified in business, Mi Wei’s next exploration has sample significance. One of the most critical variables is that the current social atmosphere is undoubtedly far more complicated and unpredictable than when “Wonderful Flowers” was launched.


Why is “Qihua Shuo” made?

Ma Dong once said in various interviews that “Wonderful Flowers” is an entertainment show. Just as he always refuses others to deepen himself, conduct in-depth analysis and exploration, he also refuses to complicate “The Story of Wonderful Flowers”.

In Ma Dong’s consistent view, culture is the precipitation of entertainment. Only with entertainment can culture. Based on this perspective, looking back at “Wonderful Flowers”, it can be considered that the reason why it has become popular is because it demonstrates a new spirit of entertaining others.

2014 is the first year of iQiyi’s self-made content. Gong Yu, CEO of iQiyi, made it clear this year that iQiyi will make content by itself. Together with iQiyi at that time, “Qihua Shuo” started an exploration on uncultivated land. Take a more thorough marketization path and produce entertainment content exclusively for netizens. Everything is full of imagination.

From the perspective of the presentation effect of the first season, “The Story of Strange Flowers” is indeed a program focused on entertaining the public. At the beginning of the game, the male mentors put on kilts, and they invited beautiful women and hunks to participate in the audition process. Its debate focuses on the social, family and love lives of contemporary young people. Whether it is a mentor or a contestant, direct expressions and funny words have become the focus of attention from the outside world.

As a host, Ma Dong’s humor and wit, which Ma Dong couldn’t play on TV, was shown in “Wonderful Flowers”, combined with Cai Kangyong’s more emotional and lyrical expressions, and Gao Xiaosong’s ubiquitous literary and historical paragraphs and baggage. This debut show with the strongest configuration quickly became popular, not to mention that “Wonderful Talk” has since unearthed more players from all walks of life with amazing language skills and unique language styles.

Audiences who have watched the previous seasons of “Wonderful Flowers” will easily get an impression: At that time, the topic selection was more in line with the hot topics of the society. It has explored marriage urging, face-seeking society, leadership silly X, derailment, unspoken rules, open marriage, single dogs, and so on. But these discussions are often extremely open, and it is not easy to come up with a “correct answer”.

In addition, even if there is less space for discussion in the public opinion, such as “should you look at your partner’s phone” and other questions that obviously involve personal privacy, it is relatively more likely to have the correct answer. 》As the contestants emphasized the social reality and the debate from various angles, the audience’s view of the “correct answer” will continue to change.

According to Heike Finance’s observations, this concept of advocating open thinking is also reflected in the early form of programming. At the beginning of the debate, the first thing to show is that the audience “stands in line” between the two points of view. As the pros and cons debates, there will be constant audiences standing in line, persuaded by the opposing debate, and cast their votes to the other side As a result, the support data on the field is constantly changing. In fact, how many people you can draw from audiences with opposite views is the only indicator of the outcome of the early “Wonderful Flowers”.

It’s kind of like a free speech market.

It may not be the original intention of “Qihua Shuo” to guide the audience to think, but it isIt does this effectively in view.

“Qihua Shuo” touched the bottom line very early. As early as 2015, “Wonderful Flowers” had two episodes of programs being removed from the shelves. It should be said that at the beginning, “Wonderful Flowers” was performed on a stage with boundaries but not very clear boundaries. The question of the scale of the debate is just the more conspicuous trouble.

The pursuit of diversified value expression is a sentence mentioned by directors Mu Di and Li Nannan in media interviews. Although Ma Dong has denied this point, he said that this is just a summary of the media, and the employees just copied it. But in fact, traces of this can be found in Ma Dong’s personal expression.

For example, in 2017, Ma Dong summarized the characteristics of “Qihua Shuo” in a public speech. He said that “Qi Hua Shuo” allows users to see that there are many other angles in the world, and they are all right. It makes people feel that it is absurd to make only one kind of judgment.

Although “Wonderful Flower Story” is mainly an entertainment program that pursues fun, what sustains its continuous fun and attracts audiences is obviously its implied respect for multiple values ​​in the debate.

Compared with the popular variety shows in the past two years, this feature will be more obvious.

For example, the first season of the highly popular program “Sister Riding the Wind and Waves” launched by Mango tv in 2020 is a draft, but in essence, the main feature is “Sisters with 30+ can ride the wind and waves.” Inspirational values. Although “Tucao Conference” is also a language program, it mainly complains about celebrities and self-deprecating, focusing on performances and funny, so its existence is relatively mild. Although there are some occasional situations in “Tucao Conference”, it can be seen from these situations that as long as the talk show moves slightly to the side of discussing social issues, it can easily cause an uproar due to triggering emotions.

It can be said that no matter in terms of form of expression or internal proposition, “Qihua Shuo” rarely has the same idea.


Horizontal and vertical dual transformation

As a company born to produce online content, Mi Wei, led by Ma Dong, has been exploring the Internet field since its inception. This kind of exploration can be roughly divided into two categories, one is variety shows as the core business, the other is based on popular variety shows to push derivatives and user-based investment.

It is a very important strategic choice for Mi Wei to expand its derivative business along the direction of variety

For example, “Wonderful Flowers Conference” is a variety show derived from the explosive business of “Wonderful Flowers”. According to Chen Liang, an executive of Meituan, “the ability of a company to do new business is essentially an overflow of organizational capabilities.” Look, in the first season, the “Wonderful Flower Conference” that was harvested by 4 brands can be said to be an overflow of the Miwei team’s investment promotion capabilities; and the audio paid product “Speak Well”, which was launched on the Himalaya APP in June 2016, can also be watched. The work is the commercial value overflow of the main debaters Ma Weiwei and Huang Zhizhong.

According to Heike Finance, “Speak Well” has been online for 10 days, with sales of 10 million yuan, which shows the influence of “Wonderful Flowers” as a popular variety show on derivatives. Also as a derivative product, there is also an e-commerce project launched by Miwei in 2017-Miwei Canteen. It has successfully sold a piece of melon seeds called “Baba”. Time to chant.

In the exploration of the main business, it is obvious that since 2016, that is, after the three seasons of “Wonderful Story”, Mi Wei’s variety show has actually changed its development direction. It did not continue the path of creating language programs in the past, but moved towards a more traditional direction of inviting stars, and also studied the form of reality shows. Although the two new programs focus on young people’s interests: Werewolf killing and weight loss.

From the two programs to choose to cooperate with Tencent and Youku respectively, it is not difficult to see that Mi Wei hopes to do more exploration between different platforms, and the boundary limited to iQiyi’s user group has been broken.

This period of exploration is the golden age in the history of Miwei for more than 5 years. There are many attempts and derivatives, and various attempts have always been accompanied by the hot spots of the Internet: audio, live broadcast, and online games. When the live broadcast was hot, Ma Dong and Yan Rujing tried to play board games on the live broadcast until they finally came to a conclusion: the important thing is not that you play and watch, what the audience wants is interaction and presence.

All explorations point to a clear goal, that is, how to be more like a content company growing on the Internet.

The big team of “Qi Hua Shuo” has incubated a small team and produced the two programs mentioned above. They are Mi Wei’s core variety show business, but unfortunately they have not received the same market attention as “Qi Hua Shuo” degree.

“The Temptation of Meal” features interviews with celebrities and a werewolf killing game with celebrities later. The seemingly fragmented process settings directly split the program into two audiences, gossip-watching and brain-conscious. The highlight of the show is that after the end of the first season, Mi Wei developed the Werewolf Killing App. Ma Dong said in a subsequent interview that “content is the sea”, and said that playing games and doing variety shows are all dealing with people’s hearts.

But the changes that came soon proved that the variety show team is not necessarily good at making games. This app, which has both basic user advantages and the exclusive title of “Meals”, chose to embrace Tencent only two months later. Tencent made an exclusiveRationale.

Compared with “Meals”, there was a derivative product. “Bye Bye La Fleur”, which cooperated with Youku, was not so lucky. This outdoor star reality show, which focused on the topic of weight loss, disappeared after one season. Below.

In 2018, Mi Wei briefly produced an amateur love reality show called “Please be in love with me like this”. This may be an attempt to go to Ma Donghua or Mi Weihua, and the show has not yet started. Too much splash.

Mi Wei’s series of attempts after “Qihua Shuo” illustrate the difficulty of the content industry to replicate the continuous explosion of money. To be more precise, this is the difficulty of transformation that Miwei’s core competitiveness is facing due to the narrowing of the space in the current gradual social atmosphere.

In 2020, Sister Lang accidentally caught fire, and all the variety shows that summer seemed to have lost their names. When the content industry has also entered an era when the law of competition is becoming closer to the Internet industry, and the winner-take-all approach is becoming more and more important, the development of a program that is popular with the mainstream has become an accident of extremely small probability.

At the end of 2018, Ma Dong’s sentence “Opening a milk tea shop at the age of 50” on Weibo provided another business possibility-investment. Unlike e-commerce commissaries and game apps derived from programs, this is an investment attempt for a brand-new consumer brand. To be precise, apart from the role of endorsement, the synergistic relationship between tea and Mi Wei is not great. This is a practice after Mi Wei established “to be a lifestyle brand loved by young people” in 2017. For this reason, Ma Dong also went to Japan to study with the smart retail team of Tencent’s Qingteng Venture Camp.

Ma Dong, who was ridiculed at Li Shanyou’s chaos entrepreneurship camp and was about to encounter “discontinuity”, completely skipped the content this time, and captured a content that is more “continuous” than the content. business.

Let tea drink become an independent commercial brand, a successful commercial investment. Since Ma Dong said this sentence, he has actually completed Mi Wei’s positioning transformation as a content company. This time, the company’s strategy focuses on the crowd, not the content. Miwei, which uses online content as the starting point for his business, is becoming a full-fledged user-based Internet company.

The transformation of production direction and the transformation of strategic focus can be described as Mi Wei’s double transformation.


Breakouts are not that simple

“Summer of the Band” is Mi Wei’s second hit. This relatively niche program can break the circle and partly reflects that the way of creating explosive models is changing from public attention to recognition by the focus.

At the time when “Wonderful Flower Talk” was showing signs of fatigue, “Summer of the Band” well carried on Mi Wei’s next development idea. Facts have proved that it is not only correct but necessary to develop a music program with continuity value at this time.

In just four or five years, initially advocated multiple pricesThe worthy “Wonderful Flower Talk” has become a cautious and serious debate program. Since then, there is no snake disease among the popular contestants, and there is no scene of revealing their sexual orientation in the audition. Professional debater, proficient in emotional debates. The housewives, scholars of intellectuals, etc. have replaced the wonderful works of the past.

Ma Dong once told a story to explain the changing trend of the times. He said that he once met a leader of Hunan TV. The two had experienced the suspension of a homosexuality program. The other party said, Ma Dong, it’s too early.

However, judging from many situations in the past few years and now, there may be some new interpretations of “it is too early”.

At the end of 2019, a virus silently attacked human society. The butterfly flapped its wings.

In March 2020, in the Weibo forum, the debaters of “Qihua Shuo” encountered a collective disturbance. First, the sixth season champions Zhan Qingyun and Zhou Xuanyi were involved, and then Qiu Chen, and then the debater Yang Qihan of “Qihua Shuo” also participated in an oppositional posture, and finally ended with Qiu Chen withdrawing from the net.

The incident affected more people. The gossip between Ma Weiwei and Zhou Xuanyi, and Ma Weiwei’s reprimanding of Jiang Sida’s fans’ past events have been revealed, and the dispute between Fu Shouer and Dong Jing has been revisited… The discussion started on Zhihu, will this affect “Wonderful Flowers”?

In fact, this not only has an impact on the debaters of “Qihua Shuo”, but also objectively determines that “Qihua Shuo” will face a future that requires more caution.

At the end of 2020, the seventh season of “Wonderful Flowers” will come out. In the 19th episode, Li Xiang and Wang Xiaochuan became debaters. The topic of that episode was, as a newcomer in the workplace, the boss doesn’t like me, should I resign.

There have been a lot of discussions on the employment relationship on social media, and the topic is “like” as the starting point, which enters a relatively safe discussion area.

In 2014, “Wonderful Flowers” disappeared, and almost all the places of speech on social networks nowadays are staged more complicated and incomprehensible controversies. It’s just that fewer people will call themselves strange flowers, and more people are willing to wear all kinds of strange flowers titles to others.

Interesting is the purpose of Mi Wei. At present, it is trying to become a carnival for a small number of lovers, and it has also moved from the mainstream to the non-mainstream.

It’s hard to say how many compelling things are in this. As expressed in an anthropomorphic short film produced by the director team of “Wonderful Flowers”, “Wonderful Flowers” has accompanied me to graduate and work with me, and taught me to listen to different voices. How can you go? A Douban netizen, nicknamed Chocolate, said that “Wonderful Flowers” may become less and less important in the mainstream, but for those of us who are thinking and yearning for the light of humanity, it has always been a conscious and iterative yearning place. .

“Wonderful Flower Talk” can become a non-mainstream for a few enthusiasts, but when Mi Wei’s non-core business has not been successful, it still needs the next explosive model that is comparable to it.An IP that can support a rich derivatives business model.

Relying on “Wonderful Flower Talk” and “Summer of the Band”, Mi Wei stagedly proved that he has the ability to create explosive models. But the market that has changed, and a group of young people who have replaced it, are still expecting it to come up with more and more cutting-edge phenomenal mainstream programs or products compared to the early “Wonderful Flower”. Of course, Ma Dong must think too.