China is the second largest market in the world. There are 650million online users in Mainland China, and online spending will reach £180 billion in 2016. The largest and keep growing middle class is attracting more and more western companies. However entering Chinese market is always costly. Is there any alternative way to enter Chinese market?
If you are considering entering the Chinese market, then this is the right article for you. Following the steps and prepare to welcome your Chinese consumers.
1. Market Research
To start with, the first homework you need to do is always marketing research. This is the most important step. To find out market trend, consumer, competition, policies and what’s the opportunity for your company,
- If you don’t have the budget to let a Chinese marketing agency to do it for you, then make sure you do the research properly
- Talk to local people in real life
- Make friends with your target consumers
- Use Chinese e-commerce platform and Chinese social media
- Monitor your competitors in China
- Keep yourself informed about Chinese market
- Don’t treat China as one market
- Don’t use Hongkong to benchmark Chinese market
- Don’t take a research for too long, it may not relevant 6 months later
2. Value Proposition
“Made in UK” can be an advantage.
Chinese love the UK brands and products. When you are the sole UK brand in the market, then congratulation, you are in a very good position. However, only “Made in UK” is difficult to become a very sustainable and differentiable proposition. You will need to find out a unique selling point that can convince the Chinese consumers as well as differentiate your brand from others.
Tips: To find the right proposition, better to start from Chinese consumer’s problems and find the link between your product and the problems, address how your products can help the consumers to solve their problems.
Chinese concerns about pollution, food safety, baby food, baby products, children’s education, health, skincare and quality.
3. Build reputation among Chinese in the UK
There are 500, ooo Chinese live in the UK, every year over 80,000 Chinese students come to the UK, and over 200,000 Chinese travel to the UK. Even you are not ready to enter China market, the Chinese in the UK still too important to ignore.
If you want to enter China market, it would be better to bribe the Chinese in the UK. Because they will the first bunch of your brand advocate provided your product is right for the Chinese market, and you have done a good marketing job among those Chinese in the UK. If they like your brand, they will spread the word to their friends and family in China.
How to build up reputation among Chinese consumers in UK ?
- Find out if you have Chinese customers ? Analyse the your current Chinese consumers.
- Analyse your relationship with your chines customers, your reputation among existing Chinese consumers
- Find the most influential UK related Chinese social media accounts and bloggers in your area, Using them to promote you brand among Chinese
4. Make your product available for the consumers in China
- Directly go to China market, register your products and company in China, find distributor or acquire a local company
- Build a Chinese website, work with Chinese key influencers and affiliates to drive traffic to your site
- Cross-border e-commerce platforms could be the most cost effective way to test Chinese market
5. Aspire the Chinese consumers
- To be searched on Baidu
- Tell target audience about your brand
- Share other consumer’s experience with your products
- Use Weibo to build exposure
- Use Wechat to build loyalty and close relationship with consumers
- Use other relevant platforms to create content about your products and brand
6. Engage with your Chinese consumers
- Use their language
- Have conversation with them
- Do the things they love, and get them to play with you
Expanding into a new market is always complex, however, e-commmerce and cross-border e-commerce make selling into China much easier. If you would like to check more information on Chinese market or Chinese Cross-border e-commerce, please feel free to contact me on Megan@okomp.com or visit OKOMP.COM/BLOG