Staff Reporters
Sep 2, 2021

Women to Watch 2021: Ning (Jessica) Zhang, Mindshare

Big business wins, innovation that leads to wider remits for existing clients, and a commitment to collaboration and mentoring characterise Zhang's leadership.

Women to Watch 2021: Ning (Jessica) Zhang, Mindshare
Celebrating the torchbearers in the APAC marcomms industry

Ning (Jessica) Zhang

Chief client officer

Having worked across various WPP companies in the past two decades, Ning (Jessica) Zhang now manages 220 people and heads Mindshare's Beijing and Guangzhou offices. As the chief client officer of Mindshare China, she leads a team serving and supporting clients including Yum!, Yili, Alibaba, Oppo, Nike and Qualcomm.

Among Zhang's career highlights, contributing to China's first social-CRM platform for Nestlé’s infant food in her early years, and winning pitches for Oppo, China Merchant Bank, Heineken, Red Bull and Yili TV buying in 2020. Possessing an innovative spirit, Zhang quickly switched business directions in the face of the pandemic, to focus on domestic enterprises and lower-tier markets, achieving significant revenue growth. At the same time, to reduce cost, she reorganised the team structure and optimised human resources. 

In the domestic market, Zhang’s team created Yili’s smart beverage vending machine, which harnesses body data from Xiaomi Watches to dispense products to consumers. Another project utilised an interactive AR safari to educate children about environmental protection for QQ Star Milk.

When Zhang joined Mindshare Beijing as general manager of the Yili account seven years ago, the business had been reduced to basic traditional media planning only. She rebuilt the organisational structure and culture and provided innovative strategies and market insights for Yili. Now, Mindshare is responsible for Yili's full media strategy, including digital-marketing strategy, social-media strategy, pan-entertainment marketing, variety-show sponsorships, DMP operations, ecommerce business and TV buying. It is one of the largest buying accounts in China. 

At Mindshare, Zhang created a culture of collaboration. She is passionate about developing promising talent, having mentored more than 10 Media Masters management trainees in GroupM last year. She is also the founding sponsor of the China Collective, a group focused on improving DEI.

Over the years, Zhang was shortlisted as Campaign Asia-Pacific’s Greater China Account Person of the Year in 2016 and as Greater China Agency Head of the Year in 2019. She won the Gold Client Growth & Partnership Award at Mindshare’s Global Award show in 2017 and was awarded as one of Mindshare’s Global Innovative Leaders on International Women’s Day 2021. 

Celebrating the torchbearers in the APAC marcomms industry
Campaign Asia

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