China's 520 Valentine’s Day, which originated from the country’s unique cyberculture, is an ideal digital marketing occasion for brands and retailers with an eye on young consumers. However, it was not until May 20 of last year that this unofficial Valentine’s Day became one of the sweet spots for luxury brands.
Unlike last May, when luxury players were desperate to recover from the gloom of the pandemic, brands mostly chose to pass over this occasion. Yet others remained dedicated to China’s market by launching special editions and curating love-themed content on this unique holiday. Here, Jing Daily highlights five luxury brands that stayed relevant to local digital shoppers this May 20.
Gucci played with the color red (symbolizing love) to celebrate the many different representations of love. Four campaign videos continued the brand's recent "theater" aesthetic and star its brand ambassadors Ni Ni and Lu Han and actors Lai Kuan-lin and actress Lareina Song, with each showcasing their memories of love. The initiative is being paired with a dedicated launch that includes handbags, shoes, and accessories, all bearing the color red.
Miu Miu’s 520 celebration aligns with its typical “Miu Miu girl” narrative, framed through a female gaze. Instead of communicating affection through the lens of others, the brand chose to present a campaign focused on female love. The campaign images, which star Chinese supermodel Xiao Wen Ju and were photographed by Fan Xin, pay homage to the 1990s by showcasing a girl's intimate yet independent moments of introspection. The images and the campaign hashtag #MiuMiu520SpecialCollection have been a hit on social platforms, garnering 160 million views within ten days on Weibo. Meanwhile, the brand launched a limited-edition, mini-size handbag with floral prints on its Tmall flagship store.
Gen Z has been on Celine's radar under the helm of Hedi Slimane. And to capitalize on the young generation’s thirst for monograms and manifestos, the brand launched a capsule collection for this year’s 520 Day that consists of a white Triomphe handbag emblazoned with "Celine" embroidered on the front as well as T-shirts and hoodies printed with “je t'aime” on them. The campaign featured the faces of young stars like global brand ambassador Lisa from the K-pop group Blackpink, Chinese actress Gulnazar, and the model Qiu Tian.
Tiffany has bet big on all love-related gifting occasions. And this 520 Day, the jewelry house debuted an online exclusive via the brand’s WeChat boutique: a Tiffany Victoria Key Necklace made with pink sapphires. The 15-second campaign video, starring actors Gong Jun, Ou Hao, and Cecilia Song and the livestreamer Li Jiaqi, received over 610 million views on Weibo in a week — substantial social traffic for a digital campaign.
Valentino leveraged an “IT” handbag to celebrate May 20 this year by rolling out a special mini Roman Stud handbag. With 5 maxi studs on both sides and 10 maxi studs on the detachable leather strap (20 in total), the design is coded with a play on the number “520.” Additionally, the campaign features brand ambassador Guan Xiao Tong and incorporates extensive celebrity endorsements from 11 female faces. Together, they drove 160 million views for the campaign hashtag #520LoveConfession on Weibo.