Skip to content
Chinese New Year spending frenzy has just got bigger

Chinese New Year spending frenzy has just got bigger

The happiest-time-of-the-year among Chinese communities offer lucrative opportunities to those with the know-how and know-who. In the first five days of Chinese New Year (CNY) 2018, Chinese movie box office receipts totaled RMB4.6 billion, a rise of almost 60% from a year earlier.

On the CNY eve, more than 300,000 Chinese families ordered reunion dinner delivery through Alipay and Koubei, a restaurant review and local services platform under Alipay. On the other hand, Alibaba said the sales of imported fresh food on Tmall jumped by about 300% year-on-year, with Chilean king crabs, Boston lobsters, and fish from New Zealand being the most popular.

This is the Year of the Dog according to Chinese zodiac. Also known as the Spring Festival, Chinese New Year marks the beginning of a new year and spring on the lunar calendar. Time for family reunions, red packets, colorful celebrations, and sumptuous feasts, among many more folk customs. To marketers and businesses, the associated spending spree, which has got even more exciting, flashes not-to-be-missed room for growth. CNY celebrations today are on-the-move, digital, and big-budget.

Travel, travel, and travel more

In China, most employees have at least seven days off work, with many enjoying two weeks of holidays; and for students, one month away from school. The Chinese New Year holiday is a global “Golden Week” for overseas tourist destination according to China National Tourism Administration (CNTA). By 2022, it is forecast that China will be the world’s largest source of outbound tourism demand.

Shanghai-based travel website Ctrip’s pre-2018 holiday report reveals people from more than 200 Chinese cities had booked outbound tours to over 700 cities in 68 countries and regions, with the tourists expected to spend US$1,510 each on their trips. Thailand, Japan, Singapore, and Vietnam are the most popular destinations while some favor the Nordic countries and the United Arab Emirates, or travel far to Antarctica.

CNTA data also indicates that outbound travel by Chinese residents grew 270% since 2008 by 2017 and is forecast to rise to 200 million departures by 2020. Notably, the outbound expenditure increased 730% in 2017 when compared to outbound expenditure in 2008.

According to a spokesperson of travel intelligence agency ForwardKeys, bookings for outbound travel during Chinese New Year, in February 2018, are currently 40% ahead of where they were at the same time last year.

How about inbound travel on the Chinese mainland? CNTA’s most recent figures from February 23, this year say that Spring Festival 2018 saw 386 million inbound travelers, up 12.1% from 2017. The inbound tourism revenue grew by 12.6% year-on-year to RMB475 billion in 2018. The top ten most popular provinces include Guangdong, Sichuan, Hunan, Jiangsu, Henan, Anhui, Shandong, Guangxi, Hubei, and Zhejiang. Finer taste, more discerning demand, and enhanced diversity were also noted in the Spring Festival inbound travel this year.

Chinese New Year goes digital in a lot of ways

The red packet or “hong bao” practice, gifting money in red envelopes, is a distinguished Chinese New Year tradition. With the world’s largest internet population and smartphone market in China, the red packet has conveniently gone digital in China.

WeChat’s omnipresence in the Chinese New Year

Tencent reported recently that 768 million people use its WeChat, the most popular messaging app in China, to send out digital red packets, up 10% from 2017. The 768 million senders represented about 78% of the total 980 million monthly active users of WeChat, and 55% of the entire population in China.

In 2015, three billion digital red packets were sent through WeChat. That surged to 46 billion in 2017, according to Bloomberg. In addition, the “red packet” function can also be found on platforms of Alibaba and a number of other Chinese companies.

A jackpot for those selling what Chinese consumers want

It is obvious that reaching the Chinese consumer is a key growth strategy for consumer-facing businesses given China’s sustained economic growth, rising incomes, 1.3 billion consumers, and expanding middle class. The Chinese economy is the world’s second largest.

Chinese residents stepped spending during this year’s Spring Festival. The retail and catering sectors in China raked in RMB926 billion yuan from February 15 to 21, equivalent to an increase of 10.2% compared with 2017, data from the Chinese Ministry of Commerce shows.

High-tech products are the latest gift trend, indicated by numbers from Taobao, JD.com, and Suning.com. Added to all this is the old custom of getting new clothing and shoes to symbolize a fresh start.

Solving the puzzle of reaching Chinese consumers – doable with the know-how and know-how

What China’s middle-class want

China’s 300 million middle-class population accounts for 30% of the total global population, and it is growing. Chinese consumers today spend more on lifestyle services and experiences as they move from mass to premium segments. Happiness and a balanced life are increasingly valued, as evidenced by the rising trend of tourism.

Data is crucial, especially in China

Data is king if companies want to connect with Chinese consumers who make up the largest group of app and internet users in the world, in particular, segment-by-segment. China’s e-commerce sector is worth $600 billion.

Timing

Some prefer well-planned vacations while others are the last-minute type. It is important to leverage behavioural insights (data again) and deliver influential messages across all relevant touch-points at the right time.

Marketing dollars ought to be spent on high-potential prospects and adopting a data-driven approach to precisely reach the Chinese wallets.

More Insights

iSuite Insights Spotlight - Issue #14 Exploring China's Dynamic Sports And Fitness Market Trends

March 28, 2024

In the bustling landscape of China’s sports and fitness market, KOLs have become a significant force in driving consumer behavior and influencing purchasing decisions. Opportunities abound for brands seeking to capitalize on this trend. According to Statista, China’s sportswear market value reached USD 43.6 billion in 2023 and the estimated YoY growth of the Chinese sportswear market is 4.3% for 2024.

 

What is XiaoHongShu (Little Red Book) – iClick Interactive

February 19, 2024

Discover Xiaohongshu, the revolutionary Chinese app blending social media and e-commerce, with over 200 million monthly active users, mainly young women.

 

愛點擊正式成爲脉脉的海外獨家代理商!

January 30, 2024

愛點擊非常高興地宣布,我們已獲委任為脈脈的海外獨家代理商。脈脈是中國領先的職業社交平台,自2013年成立以來,脉脉已建立了一個由1.2億職場人組成的高頻互動社區,使其成爲與擁有强大消費能力的中國新中産階級建立聯繫的理想平台。

 

Exciting News: iClick Teams Up with MaiMai for an Exclusive Partnership!

January 29, 2024

iClick is thrilled to announce our appointment as the Exclusive Overseas Agency for MaiMai (脉脉), the leading professional network in China!

 

What is Travel Retail Marketing: Trends, Growth & Strategies

January 9, 2024

Take a closer look at the world of travel retail marketing — a strategy for unforgettable shopping in duty-free zones tailored for travelers in China.

 

Top 10 Most Popular Chinese Social Media, Sites & Apps

January 8, 2024

Discover the influence of China's social media scene! Learn the top 10 platforms and delve into impactful marketing tactics to engage with a billion users.

 

What is KOL Marketing & How to Run a Successful KOL Campaign?

December 12, 2023

KOL Marketing means brands collaborating with influential figures to promote products/services, using their expertise and audience trust in specific niches.

 

Douyin and Ocean Engine: A Comprehensive Guide to Digital Advertising in China

December 8, 2023

Unlock the power of China's digital giants – Douyin and Ocean Engine. Learn about eligibility, breakthrough ad solutions, and best practices to thrive in China's dynamic online marketplace. Your roadmap to digital success in the Chinese market.

 

Leveraging Douyin and Ocean Engine for Success in the Chinese Market

December 6, 2023

Explore the potential of advertising with Douyin and Ocean Engine in the Chinese digital arena. Understand eligibility, required documentation, and strategic steps for global brands to make impactful inroads into China's bustling online marketplace.

 

We use cookies to give you the best digital experience. By continuing to browse this site, you give consent for cookies to be used.  To learn more information about the use of cookies, please visit our cookie policy.