Do you already hear about “Crazy Rich Asians”, the blockbuster movie that had been a huge hit on the U.S. market this summer? The producer applied for the license to show it in China before it was released in August and was finally approved only after China’s luxury spending showed signs of a slowdown in recent months.
The movie is an adaptation of the best-selling novel by Singaporean-American writer Kevin Kwan. The characters in Crazy Rich Asians live an exceptionally privileged lifestyle in Singapore, from first-class flights to shopping sprees to parties on private islands, and demonstrate ultra-expensive stunning outfits from luxury brands including Elie Saab, Alexander McQueen, Dolce & Gabbana, Valentino, Giambattista Valli, and Missoni.
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In the context of ‘rich Asians” speaking about China, now it’s not just only the biggest luxury goods buyers in the domestic market but also the worldwide luxury goods spenders. There are two key platforms that Chinese luxury goods buyers are buying from – the internet and overseas.
Back in 2013, a Chinese film called Tiny Times directed by popular writer Guo Jingming was fiercely criticized by state media People’s Daily for excessive use of luxury goods after the film became hugely successful among the country’s younger generation. The film demonstrates the modern lives of young Chinese and explores how they deal with relationships, friendships, and career development.
Chinese Luxury Lifestyle
According to Jing Daily’s report at the time, a massive number of luxury brands, including but not limited to “Ferragamo, Chanel, Dolce & Gabbana, Gucci, Prada, Bottega Veneta, Marc Jacobs, Moncler, Armani, Dior, Louis Vuitton, Pelle Moda, Neil Barrett, Hermès Birkin, Christian Louboutin, Valentino, BMW, Bentley, Rolls Royce, Texture, Sketch Red, and Apple,” appeared in the film. That was perhaps the first time a majority of Chinese consumers heard about these Western luxury brands. Since then, Chinese consumers have become responsible for more than one-third of the global sales of those brands.
Chinese luxury buyers
Chinese luxury buyers’ number is increasing fast and becomes younger (age at 20-30). They know everything about the digital, they like to check luxury brands online with one touch. It’s obvious that significant luxury brands enter the digital world and increase the number of luxury customers buying luxury goods online.
Apple in China worked with Vogue to get an iconic luxury brand image to promote its much-hyped upcoming season’s product Apple Watch. It made its editorial cover debut in one of the most fashionable magazines in the world. So, the watch can be recognized as a high fashion accessory to attract Chinese luxury buyers. Read also (Luxury World in China)
How brands can target Chinese Luxury Buyers?
There are a few vital elements for international brands to target Chinese luxury buyers with a successful marketing strategy.
- The first and essential thing that might be obvious is developing a Chinese friendly version website. It needs to be accessible and usable in Mainland China and in Mandarin. For example, the most luxury brands use Google map to display the store location, but that option is not adapted for Chinese buyers who can’t use Google.
- Building brand awareness on Wechat.
Wechat is by far the most popular Social Media messaging app in China with 1 billion monthly active user accounts up to March 2018. In fact, 93 percent of all smartphone users in China use WeChat. Presence on Wechat seems to be the most successful omnichannel marketing campaign targeting Chinese buyers (JD is
- Collaborating with Chinese social media influencers
Social media influencers and KOLs have proven their effectiveness and power over Chinese luxury buyers. Having a Chinese influencer posting a selfie from a high-end fashion brand store guarantees sales increasing.
Luxury brands have to understand how the Chinese market works and play the same rules if they don’t want to miss what is already an incredibly profitable segment. They only need to speak the right marketing language to target the richest buyers in the world.