The Marketing Gold in China’s National Day Holiday

China’s National Day Holiday has just passed us — and they don’t call it “Golden Week” (黄金周)for nothing.

Take for example this CCTV report surveying 36 retail stores in Beijing (Chinese). By October 4, their combined sales from the holiday already topped 143 million yuan — or around 18 million US dollars — which is an increase of 13.1 percent compared to the previous year. One chain of stores — Huatang — sold over 9 million yuan, a little over 1.1 million US dollars, in just one day!

Additionally, the China daily reports that “China’s gross consumer goods retail sales hit 300 billion yuan (US$37.5 billion) [during the seven day holiday]…up 14.5 per cent on the same period of last year….”

And it’s not surprising. This Sohu article (Chinese) — which starts off by pointing out how big consumer sales are during the holiday — mentions how more and more people are staying closer to home for their travel, instead of taking long, tiring trips and facing the crowds. No, these people want to visit nearby scenic spots, spend more quality time with family…and yes, even shop. Some families even take that shopping to a new level, looking at cars and even homes during their holiday.

According to a study by China Polling of Chinese women about shopping habits during the major holidays, 62.5 percent of the respondents plan to spend more money. China Polling also noted “that 64.5 percent of our target demographic wants brands which they feel are reliable [my emphasis].”

Starting to see the “gold” in all of this? If you’re marketing a product in China, you can’t afford to miss this holiday.

So where do you start? The obvious is promotions. China Polling points out that 68.5 percent of their respondents are in search of that irresistible promotion to lure them over.

Guomei Department stores offer a great example of how to do it (Chinese). In addition to offering some serious discounts (as much as 90 percent off the original price), they went above and beyond with their support services. For example, they invited electronics experts from the manufacturing plants to educate consumers about some of the latest high-end electronics on the market. They also increased their service staff and delivery trucks during the holiday to handle the increase in orders.

But retail stores aren’t the only ones in on this. Nearly every major bank in China has their own National Day rewards scheme encouraging consumers to get out and shop (Chinese). Incentives range from a chance to win a trip to Singapore to subscriptions to Vogue.

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