Staff Reporters
Mar 20, 2023

Women to Watch Greater China 2023: Riki Li, Wavemaker

Through innovative content marketing and brand growth models, Li uses data science and creativity together to help clients solve real-world business and communication challenges.

Women to Watch Greater China 2023: Riki Li, Wavemaker
Celebrating outstanding talent in marcomms

Riki Li

Managing partner, China

First, a headline number. After joining Wavemaker China as the leader of its content and social team in 2017, Riki Li accomplished 300% growth in their content marketing business volume in five years. She has done so by continuously expanding the scope of services, from traditional content co-creation for film and TV and celebrity endorsement to emerging KOL social marketing and building a new ecosystem on social platforms as well as social commerce.

Li won Greater China Producer of the Year at Campaign Asia’s Agency of the Year awards in 2021 for her achievements as a content marketing lead. However, soon after she had already accelerated her career, being named Wavemaker China managing partner. 

Among her largest successes in this role was the creation of an unprecedented service product for the agency, working together with Douyin and Ocean Engine. Using consumer data and consumer ecosystem research, she helped create a refined brand growth model, known as the ‘Front Model’. 

A successful example of this new model put into practice can be seen in Wavemaker’s work with Abbott Nutrition. Using data insights, refined content design, KOL selection, and other efforts, the number of consumers who actively searched the brand grew 16 times, and the social word-of-mouth index reached 370% growth. Ultimately, the brand sharply grew its consumers, word-of-mouth awareness and sales simultaneously. 

Wavemaker China CEO Jose Campon praised Li as the biggest contributor for their solid pitch-winning ratio of over 70%, thanks to her ideas backed up with work from her teams. Moreover, she’s credited with leading the agency’s digital transformation, scaling the digital capabilities of the entire China team. After winning new business in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou, for instance, Li’s team grew from six to thirty people. 

Li can be exacting, setting high innovation standards for herself and her team, but those who work for her know she will also take proactive steps to solve problems for her clients and the team along the way. 

Li believes that keeping her team competitive in the industry is one of her most effective leadership skills. She puts herself in the shoes of her team members to develop growth plans for them based on her own experience and their strengths and advantages. For this reason, many team members choose to stay. Her team has become the most popular team among management trainees every year. 

Celebrating outstanding talent in marcomms


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