Between the general hardships of raising children and being stuck in a seemingly never-ending lockdown, mothers in China deserve some extra love. And businesses are stepping up to spoil this demographic: in the days leading up to the second Sunday of May, JD.com found that products with the phrase “Mother’s Day” have increased at an average rate of 342 percent over the past three years.
One luxury brand cashing in on this growing opportunity was Lanvin. On May 8, the French fashion house collaborated with fashion KOL @Akiiiko to host a livestream on Xiaohongshu, featuring hundreds of products for its Spring/Summer 2022 collection. Within just 15 minutes, the livestream hit over $150,000 (1 million RMB), and many of the Mother’s Day exclusive releases sold out in half an hour. On Weibo, the brand also posted photos and videos of Chinese actresses Zhao Xiaotang and Zhang Jianing donning the new pieces with their own mothers.
But clothing isn’t the only category jumping in sales; in fact, many consumers are opting for more practical gifts. According to JD.com, the turnover of refrigerated dishes saw the biggest surge in 2022, up 1,292 percent month-on-month. Meanwhile, revenue of health service packages and nourishing health products increased by 87 percent and 45 percent, respectively, month-on-month.
Jewelry remains a favorite choice, with pearl accessories sales more than doubling month-on-month. In fact, whereas more than half of the products geared toward Mother’s Day in 2020 were clothing, jewelry gifts counted for 35 percent this year, fueled by China’s young consumers (ages 18 to 25).
Leveraging this trend, Chow Tai Fook took a more interactive approach to the holiday. In addition to the usual promotional posts on Weibo, the Hong Kong-based jeweler created a fun online quiz helping consumers define their relationship with their mother (asking questions like “What would your mother do if you hadn’t woken up by noon?” and “What would she do if you started dating?”) and then recommending products based on the results. Since May 1, the brand has reported a 70 percent year-on-year increase in sales on the e-commerce site Vipshop.
Granted, Mother’s Day isn’t even the biggest shopping event in May, sandwiched between Labor Day and 520 Valentine’s Day. However, as China’s “she economy” and “silver economy” become increasingly important, so too does this opportunity for brands to hone both their women-focused messaging as well as their health and wellness initiatives. A mother’s love knows no bounds, and perhaps the brands that successfully tap this celebration will be shown a little extra love as well.