Despite the domestic Chinese luxury goods market collapsing from 21 per cent in 2012 to an estimated 2 per cent in 2014, Chanel is the luxury brand shoppers are most likely to buy.
Averaging 12,745 daily searches on social media platform Baidu, the global prestige player was found to have the highest brand awareness among luxury consumers in China, more than five times the Index average, followed by Dior, Hermes, Gucci and Louis Vuitton.
In fact, the market analyst reports 41% to have bought a Chanel item in the last year while 46% said they hoped to buy more from the brand in the coming year.
On the social platform Sina Weibo; "Chanel was the Top 4 most popular Fashion brands with over a million followers as of April 2014 — far ahead of rivals including Louis Vuitton and Dior."
Platforms like WeChat helping to re-invent direct sales model
With Chinese consumers being highly technologically skilled, they are increasingly using the internet and social media platforms such as Weibo for pre-purchase decision making.
China is already the second largest online retail market in the world, and the fastest growing. There, the details lie in creating more active events, promotions and digital marketing strategies.
According to our Asia expert, Florence Bernardin; WeChat is becoming an increasingly important way to distribute in China, especially in the sheet mask segment, which is the only category dominated by local brands.
“WeChat can help to re-invent the direct sales model,” she tells CosmeticsDesign-Asia.com, following a recent visit to the region.
Florence informs this publication that Chinese brands are now even recruiting WeChat users to present and sell their products directly to followers.
“This is an efficient way of marketing and selling thanks to photo sharing and word of mouth."
In order to compete with these successful platforms, the expert says traditional retailers need to invest in the digital experience.