Archives for posts with tag: chinese consumers

iPhone 4 - China (中國)

September 25th marks the day the so-called ‘revolutionary’ iPhone 4 launches within Chinese shores.

You may be asking why is the launch being mentioned on a blog about advertising? Well, the answer is because the reaction of Chinese citizens to the product launch is a perfect example of how Chinese consumers are changing.

iphone 4 launch - Beijing Store

Despite being labelled a ‘developing country’ over 200,000 iPhone 4 devices were pre-ordered from Chinese telecommunications firm China Unicom and thousands were even prepared to queue outside for 2 days outside Apple’s Xidan Joy City store to get their hands on one.

iphone 4 - Apple store launch (Beijing)

This reaction highlights how disposable income among urban Chinese citizens has soared, and the fact that Apple have uncharacteristically decided to release the product so soon after its US launch demonstrates how the organisation has realised this and wants to make sure it profits as much as possible from the wealthy Chinese population.

Steve Job’s firm has even opened two more Apple Stores in the country (doubling the number in China previously to four) in order to meet the increasing demand from Chinese consumers.  Although ironically the demand for the new iPhone 4 in China is far exceeding the supply.

iphone 4 ChinaWith so much wealth flying around in the urban areas, it’s important to remember that there are still many, many Chinese citizens living in rural regions still struggling to get by each day. It would seem the gap between rich and poor is further increasing and one wonders what the Chinese Government can do help balance things out.

Nonetheless the success of Apple’s iPhone 4 launch will act as a bright beacon to Western firms looking to enter the Chinese market, and a battle between the rapidly growing domestic brands and their developed Western counterparts seems somewhat inevitable.


It’s been cars, cars, cars in recent posts and this is no exception. I now present MINI‘s latest advertising campaign in China that is based on the recent world record achievement of cramming 25 people in a MINI:

MINI China (World Record Cramming Advert) - 1

MINI China (World Record Cramming Advert) - 2

The campaign slogan is, ‘一个神话中的装人, 一装人中的神话’ (Yīgè shénhuà zhōng de zhuāng rén, Yī zhuāng rén zhōng de shénhuà) which is very roughly translates to ‘The myth of loading people, is loaded with myth and also makes a nice little Chinese tongue twister. MINI’s recent world car cramming record is currently being promoted on MINI’s Chinese homepage.

Car cramming itself is actually quite a serious competition. The new record was set by employees at the Beijing YanBao Auto on the 25th May 2010. They managed to fit a staggering 25 people into a MINI – (smashing the previous record of 24 set in 2009 by New Zealand based All-Star cheerleaders)!

Here are some photos from the 2010 world record win:

MINI China (World Record Cramming Record) - 1

MINI China (World Record Cramming Record) - 3

MINI China (World Record Cramming Record) - 4

MINI China (World Record Cramming Record) - 5

Credit to: Interone (Beijing Branch)

Yes, it’s yet another viral video! This time it comes from the computer hardware giant IBM. In 2005, IBM merged it’s PC division with the equally giant Chinese based computer manufacturer Lenovo (联想 – lián xiǎng).

The Japanese style viral is promotes the IBM eX5 server, that launched in China 3rd of March 2010:

IBM - eX5 photo

It’s not very exciting to look at, and it’s difficult to understand exactly what it does. This is where the viral video comes in. The video provides a metaphor of what the IBM eX5 can do for a business, that is support invisibly from behind scenes to effortlessly allow organisations to achieve their goals.

Jealousy International has caused an uproar from the British public through its recent promotion of the lingerie range based around Princess Diana called ‘Diana’ (戴安娜 – Dài ān nuó).

The promotion was spotted last week by a British journalist in China’s Shenzhen airport. Since then photos of the ads have been posted in newspapers / websites around the world.

Diana - Jealousy International brand

Diana - Jealousy International China (Website)

For those of you reading this blog in China, I will try to put the British upset into perspective. Princess Diana was a national heroine / treasure, she was adored by the British public when she was alive and even now 13 years after her tragic death.

Imagine if a British company started using Chairman Mao Zedong‘s image inappropriately – then that is how the majority of British people are feeling right now.

Diana - China Lingerie Brand 1

Diana - China Lingerie Brand 2

The Diana range was actually created in 1996, before her tragic death, but its the new advertising campaign that has caused all the controversy. The Chinese company had no intention of causing offence, they aimed to honor Princess Diana and wanted Chinese consumers to love and feel a British style.

Princess Diana - Chinese Lingerie Advert

In the last decade the Diana range has become extremely popular, and it is in fact one of the most influential lingerie brands in China.

It should be noted that the range was also inspired by Diana – the goddess of the moon. Unfortunately for Jealousy International the British public merely see the products as blatant exploitation.

Nike - Free Run 1

Nike - Free Run 2

Nike - Free Run 3

Nike - Free Run 4

Let’s keep this short and sweet. Here are the latest Nike (耐克 – Nài kè) posters to launch in China. They are promoting Nike Free Run trainers and to be honest there’s not much more to say about them.

However, if you want to find out more about Nike‘s Chinese offering check out:

Credit to: W+K Shanghai

Yes, it’s yet another car commercial. I apologise for a lack of diversity in recent posts, hopefully I will get my hands on some advertising from other sectors soon.

BMW 5 Series Li (2010)

Nevertheless, BMW have just released a new advertisement promoting a special version of the BMW 5 Series Li for specifically for the Chinese Market. The main difference between this 5 series and those you will find in Europe and the USA is that it has an extra long wheelbase.

The ‘Li’ was launched on August 5th 2010 and prices range from 489,600RMB to 791,600RMB (£45,500 – £73,700). The tagline for the new model is 路有多远,只有心知道 (Lù yǒu duō yuǎn, zhǐyǒu xīn zhīdào) which in essence translates to ‘How long the road, only the heart knows‘. Here’s the ad:

Three print ads (as shown) below promoting the new model were also produced as part of ‘The Joy of BMW‘ campaign.

BMW 5 Series Li - Print Ad 1

BMW 5 Series Li - Print Ad 2

BMW 5 Series Li - Print Ad 3

Credit to: Leo Burnett (China)

Have you ever wondered what happened to the mighty and British Rover car brand?

The Rover Logo (Left) and the Roewe Logo (Right)

Well here’s a quick history lesson for you. Instead of going all the way back to Rover’s origins in 1878, we will begin in 2005 – the year when MG Rover was declared insolvent. After which in 2006, the Shanghai Automotive Industry Corporation (SAIC), who actually held the intellectual property for the Rover 75 car design and was in the bidding for MG Rover brand, announced their own version of the Rover 75, which they called the ‘750‘.

In the summer of 2006, SAIC then announced their intent to buy the Rover brand name from BMW, who still owned the rights to the Rover marque. However, BMW refused their request, due to an agreement with Ford which gave the latter firm control of the brand. Unable to use the Rover name, SAIC created their own brand with a similar name and badge (pictured above), known as Roewe (荣威) or in pinyin ‘Róng wēi’ pronounced Rone-way in English.

Roewe 350

Roewe launched in 2007. Many westerners assuming that it was just another Chinese copycat brand, when in fact it was entirely legitimate.

Now in 2010, Roewe are producing cars left,right and centre. Most recently the organisation has produced the Roewe 350 (shown above) and below are three advertisements to promote their latest model. Two of the adverts are in English too so no need for the usual translation / lengthy explanations…phew.

So sit back and enjoy.

Credit to: THINK Advertising Agency (China)

Unbeatable Title Image

Following the success of China’s very own version of Ugly Betty entitled “Ugly Wudi” (丑女无敌) which was created for the Dove brand and is pictured below. Unilever has devised yet another TV drama series to promote ‘Clear‘, the anti-dandruff shampoo brand.

The star of Ugly Wudi

The series is titled 无懈可击(Wú xiè kě jī) aka ‘Unbeatable‘, which is a play on words of Clear‘s tagline 无屑可击 (Wú xiè kě jī) which means ‘No flakes can strike‘. Notice the second character varies between the two but the pronunciation is identical.

The Unbeatable series will have 36 episodes which all include the underlying message that using Clear shampoo prevents dandruff. If you’re thinking this type of thing would never work, let me tell you, Dove’s demand in China increased by 21% and it’s brand awareness tripled thanks to the Ugly Wudi show.

Unbeatable follows the trials and tribulations of a group of young people (played by famous Chinese actors / actresses) and how with their “unbeatable” spirit, overcome challenges in career, relationships and life. The heroine is a fresh graduate who landed a job in an international public relations agency,whose key client is, would you believe, – Clear shampoo.

Unbeatable in acton

The whole story was developed around Clear’s four-phase brand communication strategy:

  1. Dump — 甩了欺骗者 (Shuǎi le qīpiàn zhě)
  2. Trust — 信任拍档  (Xìnrèn pāidàng)
  3. Self-breakthrough — 突破自我 (Túpò zìwǒ)
  4. Unbeatable — 无懈可击 (Wú xiè kě jī)

However, what is even more intriguing is the social media strategy which is being implemented to create buzz around the series. Firstly, they have created a branded mini-site within the TV section of (A Chinese website which provides news, media, information and entertainment) which can be viewed by clicking here.

Unilever has also produced a video of the series theme tune which can be downloaded and an online game is also soon to be released around the series, both of these additions, of course, include the Clear shampoo brand.

Unbeatable advertisement

It often surprises me that these type of campaigns are so successful in China, but would never really work in the UK. The British audience have a distinct distaste for blatant promotions within or around their favourite TV shows. In the UK, brand’s have to be more subtle in their approach.

In fact, a great example of this oddly enough comes from Unilever. The firm recently created a branded mini-series around Mad Men, which aired during the show in the States, but it was met with abhorrence from the majority of the American audience. Although, some viewers have said that when fast-forwarding through the commercials they stopped at the one in question thinking that it was part of the actual show. So maybe it has worked, have a look below, what’s your opinion?

This week it was announced that China’s State Council Information Office have hired Lowe & Partners advertising agency – Shanghai Branch – to produce a 30 second advert that will boost the nation’s image abroard.

Forbes Most Powerful Chinese Celebrity List (2009)
The ad (in production below) will feature 50 famous Chinese citizens from all walks of life. This includes:

  • Yáo Míng (姚明) — the tallest basketball player in the NBA, playing for the Houston Rockets and stands at 7ft 6in tall.
  • Láng Lǎng (郎朗) — a fabulous pianist of Hong Kong citizenship but was recently named an official worldwide ambassador for the Shanghai Expo.
  • Yáng Lìwěi (杨利伟) — the first man to be sent into space as part of a Chinese mission.
  • Guō Jīngjīng (郭晶晶) — an athlete who has the world record for winning the most Olympic gold medals in diving.
  • and finally Dīng Lěi (丁磊) — CEO of NetEase (a chinese internet company) and one of the wealthiest men in China. A surprising choice as he quite clearly represents the success of capitalism.

China’s leaders will also make a brief appearance. As well as the ad, a 15-minute film to be shown at a number of international events, is also in production.

China National Promo Ad - Production Photo

Why are they making this ad now?
According to a BBC survey, that was carried out in 28 foreign countries including the UK, many foreigners or Lǎowài (as the Chinese love to say) have negative views of China – the majority stem from Beijing’s handling of Tibet. To that end Chinese leaders want to show the world that China is now developing into a “prosperous, democratic and progressive nation”.

The ad will first broadcast on October 1st, 2010 – 国庆节 (guóqìng jié) which in English is the National Day of the People’s Republic of China.

Further developments about the campaign and the ad itself will be posted on this blog as soon as the information becomes available.

Midea is a Chinese manufacturing company with its Head Office in Guangdong province. The organisation itself is over 40 years old.

The print ads below are promoting Midea’s impressive range of 视频监控 (Shìpín jiānkòng) i.e. CCTV cameras. I find the idea behind these ads is simple and effective.

Midea-Control CCTV cameras (Poster 1)

Midea-Control CCTV Cameras (Poster 2)

Midea-Control CCTV Cameras (Poster 3)

Credit to: Ogilvy & Mather (Shanghai Branch)

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