Multinational ed-tech unicorn Duolingo held a media conference in Beijing on Aug. 28 to celebrate the anniversary of its entry into China. Duolingo is an American platform that includes a language-learning website and mobile app, as well as a digital language-proficiency assessment exam. The company assembled its Beijing team, its first overseas office, in 2019.
The company’s Duolingo App and Duolingo English test both performed well in the first year of entering China, which is an important milestone in the localization development. “The growing demand for language learning in China, the diversity of learning in non-English languages, and the huge potential of online education all give us confidence in the Chinese market. Following the vision of Duolingo, we hope to share high-quality and free educational resources with more local users,” said Hai Na, Marketing Head of Duolingo China.
Duolingo hopes to reshape the way of language learning through reasonable planning of fragmented time and interesting learning modes. Duolingo hopes to shape language learning into a new lifestyle trend, and this concept is gradually accepted by more and more language lovers. Currently, Duolinguo has 300 million users worldwide and 15 million Chinese users. The number of active users in China in the first half of 2020 showed a 200% growth compared with the same period last year, according to data from the company.
In order to better meet the learning habits and behavioral preferences of Chinese users, Duolingo has carried out a series of localized products and marketing. At the product level, the technical team has created 6 foreign language resources that can be learned in Chinese, namely English, Japanese, Korean, French, Italian and Spanish. At the market level, “word-of mouth marketing” has become a major driving force in many neighboring countries. More than 300 experts have cooperated with each other on social and short video platforms such as Douyin, Bilibili, Zhihu and Xiaohongshu to share their experiences.
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With its three core features of convenience, efficiency and economy, the Duolingo English test has attracted a lot of attention. Between January and May 2020, the total number of examinees worldwide increased significantly. In China, the number of test takers increased 20-fold compared with 2019, and the number of test takers in China became first in the world. Similarly, the Duolingo English test has been recognized by a number of prestigious universities, including Yale University, University of California, University College London, Imperial College, Australian National University and McGill University.