Skip to main content

China's Super Consumers: What 1 Billion Customers Want and How to Sell it to Them



China's Super Consumers: What 1 Billion Customers Want and How to Sell it to Them

Savio Chan, Michael Zakkour

ISBN: 978-1-118-83474-9 September 2014 240 Pages


Chinese Consumers are Changing The World – Understand Them and Sell To Them

China has transformed itself from a feudal economy in the 19th century, to Mao and Communism in the 20th century, to the largest consumer market in the world by the early 21st century. China's Super Consumers explores the extraordinary birth of consumerism in China and explains who these super consumers are. China's Super Consumers offers an in-depth explanation of what's inside the minds of Chinese consumers and explores what they buy, where they buy, how they buy, and most importantly why they buy.

The book is filled with real-world stories of the foreign and domestic companies, leading brands, and top executives who have succeeded in selling to this burgeoning marketplace. This remarkable book also takes you inside the boardrooms of the people who understand Chinese consumers and have had success in the Chinese market.

  • A hands-on resource for succeeding in the Chinese marketplace
  • Filled with real-world stories of companies who have made an impact in China
  • Discover what the Chinese consumer wants and how to deliver the goods
  • Written by Savio Chan and Michael Zakkour, two leading experts on the Chinese market

This book is an invaluable resource for anyone who wants a clear understanding of how China's Super Consumers are changing the world and how to sell to them.

Preface xi

Acknowledgments xiii

Introduction: The China Dream 1

Our Intent 7

The Country within a Country 7

Part I History, Culture, and Language Matter—The Birth of Chinese Consumerism 11

Chapter 1 From Feudalism to Fendi 13

Back to the Future 14

Chinese Consumption: What’s Old Is New Again (Tenfold!) 16

China’s Growth Is Different 18

Chapter 2 Orientation 21

A Code to the Chinese Mind-set 24

Contradiction and Paradox 30

Summary 31

Chapter 3 A Self-Contained Empire 33

Chapter 4 The First Globalization 41

Chapter 5 Marco Polo and the Two Admirals of the Sea 43

The Two Admirals of the Sea 44

Chapter 6 An Insatiable Appetite 49

Freedom Creates Wealth in the West 51

Chapter 7 Opium, Imperialism, and Decay 53

Opium and War 54

A Century of Exploitation 54

End of War—Continuation of War 56

Chapter 8 The People’s Republic 57

The New China 58

Chapter 9 The Mandate of Heaven 61

Opening and Reform 65

Green Shoots 67

Chapter 10 A Boom Is Born 69

A Boom Starts with a Swoosh and a Shot of Espresso 71

Change at Hyper Speed 74

Part II The Chinese Super Consumer—From Birth to Adolescence and Maturity 77

Chapter 11 From Sandpaper to Sephora—The First Super Consumers 79

American Century Redux 80

Want. Need. Buy. Show Off. Keep Up. 82

Super Consumption Goes Global 82

Go West, Young Man 83

China’s Own Postwar Boom and Birth of the Chinese Super Consumer 85

In the Beginning 87

Chapter 12 The China Market + The China Global Demographic = China’s Super Consumers 91

The China Whisperer 93

Spinning in a Whirlpool 95

The Great Pizza Wars: In China, Everything Is Possible, but Nothing Is Easy 96

Listen to the Great One 97

Stay the Course, Even When the Seas Get Rough 98

Nestlé: Navigating the Teen Years 100

Chapter 13 The China Global Demographic 103

The Precious Gift of Time 104

Meet the Tangs 107

Chapter 14 Channels 113

Department Stores 114

Street-Level Stores 115

Malls 116

Grocery Stores/Supermarkets 118

Hypermarkets 119

Convenience Stores 120

Not Your Father’s Post Office 121

Lifestyle Stores 126

Specialty Retailers 127

Multibrand Retail 127

Chapter 15 E-commerce and the Rise of Alibaba 129

Alibaba 130

NFL Footballs “Sold Out” 132

Why E-commerce? 135

Chapter 16 Supply Chains to Satisfy China’s Super

Consumers 139

Supply Chain Megaprocesses 140

Plan 141

Buy 142

Make 142

Distribute 143

Sell 144

Aligning Strategy, Structure, and Implementation 144

Chapter 17 Segmentation 147

Surveying China 147

A Most Discerning Consumer 152

Chapter 18 Marketing 155

Consumer Impulses and Desires 156

Lenovo’s Approach: The Best of Both Worlds 157

From East to West to Wei East 161

Baby Boom 164

Brand Advertising in China 169

Going Native—Tory Burch, Gossip Girl, and Made-for-China TV 170

The Role of Social Media in Marketing: United States versus China 173

Promotions 177

Chapter 19 The Chinese Luxury and Premium Market 179

The Nouveau Riche: Pebble Beach or Nothing 180

The Gifting Group 181

China’s Engine: The New Middle Class Seeks Quality and Value 182

Affordable Luxury: A Tiffany’s Tie Clip and an Entry-Level BMW 183

China’s Luxury Downturn: Myths and Realities 186

Chapter 20 Travel and Tourism 191

Take a Walk on Boardwalk—Pass Go, Collect $200 (Thousand!) 195

Chapter 21 Chinese Super Consumers Changing the World 203

The Microsoft Miracle 203

A Final Word about China’s Super Consumers 207

Index 213