Since 2014, China has become the largest ice cream market in the world . The country is experiencing exponential growth thanks in particular to a change in the attitudes and consumption behaviors of individuals within the country. The Chinese, accustomed to a salty diet, discover little by little the sweet pleasures and especially the ice creams.

A growth-oriented market in which international brands derive their pins from the game.


Market Survey about ice Cream in China


In six years, the market in China has grown its sales by more than 90%, propelling the market as the largest in the world. The market turnover is estimated at more than $ 12 billion and 6 billion liters in volume. The United States, however, remains the country’s largest consumer of ice per capita. Indeed, this represents about 18 liters per person per year compared to 4 in China. This difference is justified by the size of the population and the growing popularity of frozen products in China, which is slower than in America.

The ice-cream market was once considered in China as a high-end market, it was never part of the consumption habits of individuals. The emergence of a middle class open to new and better consumption boosts the market. In large cities, eating out is becoming affordable and gaining popularity in the country.

The market has gained popularity thanks in particular to the advertising investments made by the market giants to energize and educate the consumer on this type of product, which was still very little consuming. This has helped to reduce the notion of seasonality in the market.

A market where the notion of brand plays an important role in the act of purchase

A strong competitive intensity is found on the market justified by the growing interest in the segment. The actors redouble their efforts to innovate and differentiate themselves from competitors. However, there are five brands, Yili, Walls, which belongs to Unilever, Mengniu and Nestlé. Each actor tries to stand out to obtain the position of leader in a market saturated by the actors in attendance.

The increasing interest in this segment, the gradual acceptance of this category of product and the strong competitive intensity force the players to seek the best competitive advantage through product innovations, packaging and nutritional values.

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A market responsive to the expectations of its consumers

The ice cream market remains a category of products often bought for hedonic motivations and driven by impulse buying.

The segment is facing a change in consumer behavior from Chinese consumers, who are increasingly inclined to turn to premium, healthy, and enjoyable products. These behaviors are mainly driven by international brands.

For example, Magnum and Häagen Dazs have introduced a variety of so-called “pleasure” products on the market in China to meet a consumer demand based on the richness of the texture and flavors of ice cream. The ice cream becomes a relaxing moment and the brand Häagen Dazs has very well understood it by opening stores in the country.

  • Developing your activities in the ice cream market in China is not going to be easy, but that does not mean it’s impossible!
  • International brands having a good reputation before entering the market you are already leaving with a definite advantage.
  • On the market you will need, a good strategy of distribution, sales promotions and R&D.
  • Understanding and adapting to Chinese culture

Globalization has favored international trade and allowed the development of the activities of companies wishing to expand their business. However, wanting to expand its activities also requires understanding the country where it wants to market its products. Reproducing a business strategy similar to your geographic area will probably not have the same impact in China. Therefore, the need for knowledge and understanding of the socio-cultural difference between your country and China will be felt.

Think Global, Act Local!

Opting for the best market entry strategy in China

There are four major strategies for entering the Chinese market: using a sales agent, partnering with a Chinese distributor, opening a sales outlet or marketing your products via e-commerce platforms.

Since the ice market is often driven by pulse purchases and the hedonic variable, the most logical choice would be to associate you with a Chinese distributor or to associate yourself with a local brand to gain visibility.

For that, you will have to improve your reputation. Traders in the Chinese markets have a habit of partnering with partners who already have a strong reputation in the Chinese market to develop their activities. The solution is therefore online. You will need to develop your reputation digitally.

Reputation Through Social Media

With more than 900 million Internet users, China has become the largest Internet sphere in the world. Its specificity? Be completely closed to the outside world. The Chinese digital sphere is peculiar to itself, the censorship dominating the country prevents international actors like Facebook or Twitter from positioning itself in the market. Chinese actors have therefore created their own digital platforms to meet the demand of Chinese Internet users.

One of the most effective ways to make yourself visible on the market is to introduce you to one of the flagship platforms of the Chinese environment that is WeChat. The WeChat application was created in 2011 by the company Tencent, it is a mobile application of free instant messenger with multiple functions which makes of it a social network completely integrated in the Chinese environment since the application accompanies l Individual in his daily life.

Much more than a network of exchange, the platform is a powerful marketing tool of the country to interact with your present and potential customers but also for the diffusion of your campaigns of promotions.

Engage your Clients with Games / contest

Video are great way to give consumers Brand Recognition

Create buzz go viral in China !

Do not be a brand like the other… in 2017 if you want to succeed you need to create the buzz… and we can help you. 

Use Influencers to Promote your Brands

you want to know more about How promote a Ice Cream brand in China ?

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For more information about our offers and projects do not hesitate to visit our website or contact one of our experts who will be happy to answer your request.