Discounts and reputation matter in China

11 December 2009

BEIJING: Promotions and a good reputation are among the major factors that influence which grocery brands are most favoured by Chinese shoppers, new figures show.

Prosper China, in conjunction with Big Research, conducted a survey of 15,000 consumers in the world's most populous nation in order to gain an insight into their purchase preferences.

More specifically, it aimed to identify the key drivers of buying habits among "upwardly mobile" people in the 18–34 year old demographic, which is comprised of 360 million adults overall.

"Allocating media dollars in China's fragmented marketplace is no easy task for foreign marketers. Chinese consumers are unique and a one-size-fits-all ad campaign won't work," the study argued.

"Chinese tend to be selective in their purchases and more educated about western brands."
When it came to choosing grocery products, trade promotion was said to play a central role by 24.5% of respondents, compared with 19.6% assigning such a status to a brand's reputation.

Television advertising received a score of 13.7% on this measure, with newspaper executions on 11.6%, direct marketing on 10.8%, magazines, on 5.4%, and radio, on 3.8%.

Digital media appeared to have a less substantial impact, with online ads mentioned by just 3.6% of participants, a figure that fell to 2.4% for mobile.

By contrast, brand reputation took the top spot when it came to the telecoms sector, on 21.7%, a rating that reached 17% for TV spots, and 13.2% for press advertising.

Direct marketing posted a total of 11.4%, with trade promotion on 11.2%, magazines on 7%, internet advertising on 5.5%, radio on 4.7%, and mobile on just 2.8%.

Data sourced from Big Research; additional content by Warc staff