Ophenia Liang Shells Out Insights On The Purses That Are Shaping China’s Economy
Rachel Akuffo interviews Ophenia Liang on women’s purchasing power and the way it has been shaping China’s economy this morning at 8 am (Washington DC) on CGTN Global Business News. Ophenia shared information about China’s economy from the soon to be released ABC Index by Digital Crew.
So give us an idea on how women’s purchasing power in China is changing as the middle class grows and the country continues to open up?
China has one of the highest employment participation rates from women in the world and in terms of women in management, the ratio is higher than in Western countries. Some domestic companies or government agencies have as high as 50 – 60% of women in management which explains the large buying power than they did 5-10 years ago.
It also seems that when you have women in one of these decision-making positions, the end product is catering to women consumers. Tell us more about why it’s important to have women in those positions?
Yes Absolutely. According to our first-hand research undertaken by Monash University and backed by Digital Crew, it was observed that Chinese women consider foreign brands particularly in the wine and tourism segment from Australia and America which is surprisingly different as opposed to their male counterparts.
So what are the industries that benefit the most from female consumption in China?
With the high employment rate and ever-increasing consumption power, they take decisions in their households. In terms of consumption, they now prefer patronising quality foreign brands that help them portray a professional front, especially in the wine and tourism categories. The consumption patterns are further divided into Tier 1 and Tier 2 cities. Women from Tier one cities consume the finer things from the wine and luxury categories, while women from tier 2 and 3 cities consume fast-moving goods and beverage.
So especially given the role of women as decision-makers not just in companies, but also in families, how valuable is a women’s contribution to China’s economy overall?
Its absolutely phenomenal how they are the key decision makers in household consumption, not only with cars but also daily consumption, travel decision and we find that females are making most of the purchasing decisions including buying properties and travel places. Findings reveal that many foreign brands are already targeting females in particular.
Now we’ve seen some companies, completely misinformed that paint something pink and assume that’s what women want. Has this lack of understanding led women to start their own companies to fill in this gap in the market?
Female consumers in recent decades have become very informed. They are highly educated, most of them have attended college and pursued higher education and are making extremely informed decisions that are backed by strong research. They have become digitally savvy over the years and derive their information from the internet. They read a lot online and connect with brands digitally.
So for some of these older companies that are trying to change their mindset, what is the strategy they can put in place to get into the mind of the modern Chinese female consumer?
Its definitely connecting to consumers digitally through social media and many other digital means. In this digital age, we’ve seen that China has more than 700 million consumers online and more than half of them are purchasing online so it’s imperative that brands adapt online and be present on the e-commerce space. Consumers are also very familiar with mobile payments and the brands that have adapted themselves to this digital sphere complete with mobile payments have been more successful in China.
What’s your outlook in terms of growth of the female consumption market in China?
Any brand serious about China in the long run, certainly need to consider talking to their female consumer seriously and portray themselves as quality professionals that are renowned and trustworthy in order to be successful in China.
The interview raised an important concern with regards to marketing to the modern female consumer and how brands need to understand the ‘Perception’ of their products before venturing into this market.
Stay tuned to the ABC Index report that is soon going to be released by Digital Crew
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