Maybe owing of the unavailability of the tap water in China, the fact to often buy beverage has always been a normality. Moreover, with so many sales point available (there is an average of three shops on 100 meters in big cities) they are contributing to meet and to drive demands. Drink’s consumption seems quite as an addiction nowadays. In November 2017, this market reached 2088 billion Yuan in China which increased by 10.4% year-by-year, according to the National Bureau of Statistics of China. But that’s not all, the market is projected to keep growing in the next 5 years. Because of a high gross profit on beverage industry, it’s also very attractive for investors.
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Evolution of Chinese consumer’s choice
In account of the increasing income of Chinese people these years and their confidence in this trend, their desire to consume and their expectation for consumption is constantly growing. From that perspective, while the price for made-on-site drink is higher than bottled drink, it is welcoming a very fast growth stage.
Over the past 30 years, Milk tea (or often called Bubble tea) became the most popular drink in China. However, this is a controversial drink because of its high sugar content and composition (especially for the cream inside and the « bubble » made of starch). In fact, even if it is still very popular, Milk tea is knowing as an unhealthy drink and people are trying to consume less.
The success of 喜茶 (Xi Cha) in China
Xi cha (Heekcaa or Heytea because they changed the name) is known for its good taste and quality tea, it’s a new fashion brand of milk tea. The average price for a drink is 25rmb, less than Starbucks which is almost 30-40 rmb. For the ones who are living in first-tier city, this price is quite affordable.
Xi Cha got its name and its reputation by the joyful name given on each of its drink, promoting self-improvement, persistence, which attract a lot of consumers ( ««Xi » means joy and “cha” for tea). It is also known for its long (very long) queue time before getting a drink. It’s common to wait 1 or 2 hours in front of the shop, sometimes 3 to 4 hours! Even if there is some people saying that it’s not as tasty as rumors said, the retweet of Xi Cha’s product on internet is still very important. Xi Cha took the real name registration measure and limited the quantity to two cup for each person “in order to counter 黄牛huang niu” (person who bought drinks and then sell them within high prices).
Be part of this trendy market
More and more Chinese are in search of a healthy diet, and choose to turn to less calories and more beneficial drink. Amongst the different kind of beverages, the healthier ones, vitamin functional, nutrient and energy drinks such as red bull are about to become very successful in China.
However, having just an idea is insufficient here. There are things about Chinese market to notice to get profit from this market. Gentlemen Marketing agency provides 5 advices to launch your beverage in China :
Traceability of the product
Play on your origin, especially for foreign brand. Chinese people are attracted by imported product (see articles here because often, “foreign product” means “better quality”. Owing of the different food scandals happened in the past, nowadays Chinese customers care a lot about where the product is from. As it contains more transparent information, it reassures them. Nongfu Spring, an old water brand in China plays on this for its advertising.
The product testing
The best way is to organize, if it is possible, free product test in a public spot. Let suppose that a Chinese customer tried your drink and is satisfied, he will be more tempted to buy it as he just participated in the test. Also, the presence of other people in that place would push him to buy, as the “other people’s look” is very important in China.
Moreover, we can see in China the fact of the “group consumption”. Chinese consumers tend to follow the purchase of others. Let suppose again the event attracts a lot of people around, it would be sufficient if some of them start to buy to let the other engage.
Packaging and design
Take care of the appearance of the product. The market is already full of offers, so to attract the consumer’s eye, you should consider it. Chinese consumers are sensitives to appearance, and a good design can make the difference (even to brought tweet). For example, you can choose to go on a pure design strategy, because it changes from what they can see every day (including packaging with a lot of colors, brand representative, and a lot of information). Or you can add caring messages which could contribute to an added value of the product. The difference that you create from the other brands can be a real advantage for your product.
Take care of the brand reputation
The word of mouth is very powerful in China. This fact joins what we told in this article, Chinese people trust more the others that the brand itself. Good quality products and the bad ones are classified very quickly as the information is transmitted very fast. It is very difficult to deal with the brand image after it is done.
Web presence and e-commerce
Today, Chinese are very active on internet to get or to share information. This is a more quicker and more reliable method for them, instead of dealing with employees in shops. It is necessary to ensure an online presence to catch the market demands. In addition, as consumers see the brand, they will have more confidence on them. Different channels of sales should be considered.
You want to market your drink in China? In front of the large supplies available on the market, ensure your brand reputation and your online presence. Do not hesitate to contact Gentlemen Marketing Agency, digital marketing specialist in china. Our team of experts will be able to guide you in your project development in china through built an adapted strategy to your brand in China.
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