When positioning your brand into the China market it is essential that you get input from your potential customers. Chinese consumers will provide their unique perspective on everything from name, taste and experience, to packaging and price. There is no room for assumption in this complex and diverse marketplace.
Qualitative consumer research provides actionable insights into customer attitudes, behaviour, emotions and reaction, provides demographic and ethnographic awareness, and informs your market strategy, in real time, in direct response to a product or a brand.
While exporters want to sell to Chinese consumers, they don’t necessarily know how to reach them and what to ask. What works at home will not necessarily work in the China market. Furthermore regional differences, variance between the tiers and consumption patterns, means that an approach must be targeted accordingly.
Chinese consumers want to know how you can make their world better. Their needs have evolved from the functional to the emotional. They are interested in safe, environmentally friendly, socially responsible, and sustainable brands and products. Country of origin is also a factor. So, undertake that packaging and labelling audit, survey your name and story, taste test your product, and evaluate customer satisfaction. You will be surprised at the consumer response. Getting premium positioning and price is contingent on you getting it right with consumers.
Don’t expect premium placement if you are packaging a sustainable product in plastic, or your story cannot be comprehended within the Chinese worldview, or your price doesn’t measure up to perceived value, or your brand name and imagery does not fly and/or has negative connotations.
In a market that is evolving very fast you need to be constantly testing concepts and touch-points. Negative customer sentiment both on and offline has the potential to stop your China venture in its tracks. Listening to your potential customer gives you the opportunity to refine or rethink your market strategy and inform investment and market development.