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Meet the 2018 Chinese Consumers (Believe me, it is different...)

The age of Lifestyle Upgrade

In the past decade, China’s advancing economy has provided businesses with substantial growth opportunities. The Chinese consumer market is on the threshold of a revolution that offers new opportunities, one in particular is the “Lifestyle Upgrade”. This has been a notable emerging trend this year with Chinese consumers spending considerably less on but more on upgrading their lifestyles.

China is penetrating into a new stage where consumption growth will be driven by new values of Chinese consumers. This emerging trend is not just “youth-led” as middle aged consumer are displaying similar buying patterns alongside the millennials.

It has also been found that due to a significant amount of consumers jumping on the lifestyle upgrade wave, premium products are the preferred choice amongst consumers. Data from the CSRI Emerging Consumer Survey indicates that Chinese consumers will buy a more expensive product rather than it’s cheaper counterpart simply due to the brand image. This highlights the importance of a brand’s image and brand strategy in China as it is one of the main factors consumers will look to while purchasing.

Double V. Founder Ms. Elaine Wong at China Influencer Summit 2018

Investing in #Branding is important, it has become one of the necessities to be able to successfully sell in China.

Tips: We recommend you familiarise yourself with your brand or product's advantages from the perspective of Chinese consumers, not from the perspective of your own brand. Having clear brand positioning is crucial in China, it has to be presented in a right way and on the right channels.

The Chinese consumer, more than any other in the world, relies on online product recommendations. Peer opinion and brand reputation is a key factor when they make deciding purchases. Forbes, noted that over 75% of Chinese internet users post feedback/reviews on their purchases at least once a month. For a comparison, in the U.S it’s less than 20%.

Studies have shown that 90% of consumers buy products based on their reputation, the positioning of your brand can greatly affect the sales of your products. One of the most effective methods of promotion is word of mouth which has become one of the most influential strategies in China. Particularly with the rise of social media platforms such as WeChat, RED, Taobao live streaming channels and KOLs, which have all become prominent tools for marketing in China.

Don't be afraid to create your word of mouth from scratch.

Tips: Have a strategic plan but make it flexible. The Chinese market changes rapidly, instead trying to get the perfect plan, experiment with the market and play around with styles.

"With a focus on informative, content and an active user base, the scope of this app is endless."

In today’s technological era, there is an endless number of channels where consumers are looking to buy products. RED also known as XiaoHongShu (小红书) is one such channel that is becoming increasingly popular. This is due to its growing word-of-mouth marketing platform based on trusted UGC.


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