Retailers have gained a lot of opportunities through online-to-offline (O2O) marketing in China, and the wave has recently spread to the local luxury outlet shopping scene. On April 25, Chinese luxury outlet Mega Mills (米格天地) announced a strategic O2O collaboration with Alibaba Group, with the slogan of “change, innovation, and breakthrough.”
Mega Mills is a luxury outlet center located in Qingpu District, Shanghai that opened in January 2013. The center houses restaurants, cinemas, and more than 170 international luxury brands such as Versace, Balmain, Roberto Cavalli, Michael Kors, Ted Baker, Furla, and Thomas Pink.
Having acknowledged China’s enormous e-commerce boom, Mega Mills has been seeking to join in on the benefits that can come from an O2O strategy. Its collaboration with Alibaba is reportedly unprecedented in the domestic luxury outlet industry, and aims to form an effective online-to-offline and offline-to-online circuit by attracting consumers online and bringing them to brick-and-mortar stores, as well as directing them from brick and mortar back to online.
Alibaba’s marketing strategy for Mega Mills features coupon shopping sprees released on Taobao and Weibo. On Taobao, consumers are able to scan QR codes to claim VIP memberships and purchase gift cards at a discounted price. On Weibo, the outlet center periodically gives away gift cards by hosting sweepstakes. The O2O scheme was launched in late April to prepare for the upcoming May 1 Golden Week holiday shopping wave. So far, more than 300,000 digital VIP cards have been claimed, and more than a total of 6,000 gift cards were sold in a short period of time.
The collaboration shows Alibaba’s seriousness about gaining presence into every corner of China’s retail, as well as the luxury outlet’s transition as e-commerce booms in the country.