Alibaba’s Singles Day, China’s biggest online shopping holiday, is just around the corner. Last year, the e-commerce company’s online marketplaces Tmall and Taobao pulled in a total of 17.8 billion of sales within 24 days. Citigroup forecasted that sales in 2017 will reach 24 billion.
In the lead-up to the event this year, Alibaba Group has made great marketing efforts to stoke Chinese consumers’ anticipation for the event. It hosted a “See Now Buy Now” fashion show ahead of the festival, inviting a slew of Chinese celebrities to wear outfits and carry products provided by participating brands while performing on stage. The show was broadcast on a number of different channels, including China’s biggest online streaming site Youku and several local TV stations. Chinese consumers could watch the show on their mobile phones and place orders directly if they are interested in items shown by performers.
With the Singles Day shopping holiday, Alibaba has provided international fashion and luxury brands with a golden opportunity to reach out to Chinese consumers. According to Alizila, the company’s PR portal, the size of Singles Day has grown to more than 18 times that of Amazon Prime Day, and 2.5 times larger than Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined.
For luxury and fashion brands, the festival is the one annual retail event that they cannot miss if they want to get the most out of the Chinese market. Currently, top-tier luxury labels still refrain from participating in it. The event features lots of discounts and sales, which goes against the traditional pricing principles of the luxury business. However, we have seen an increasing number of premium labels decide to give it a try in recent years.
The luxury fashion brands that do participate in Singles Day all use WeChat as a crucial communication channel, to inform consumers of their Singles Day promotions. The following are eight great WeChat campaigns released by brands that caught our attention:
Coach has rolled out a very nicely planned WeChat campaign to promote its Singles Day sales. On November 7, the brand published an article to introduce this year’s deals. Readers can also peruse a much more visually-appealing, interactive HTML5 page by following the link provided at the end of the post. Users can navigate through the HTML5 page to get detailed information, such as descriptions and discount rates, on each deal. When they click on items that they're interested in, shoppers will be directed to Coach’s Chinese e-commerce website where they can place an order immediately.
To celebrate this year’s Singles Day, the fashion footwear label Stuart Weitzman is calling on its followers to purchase some of its most popular shoes to reward themselves, especially those who are single. On November 11, consumers will enjoy 20 percent off of any order that they place on the brand’s official e-commerce website. Stuart Weitzman’s WeChat campaign has done a good job of encouraging readers to purchase products. At the end of Stuart Weitzman's post, consumers can click to enter the e-commerce site and order directly. There is also information on offline store locations for those people who want to visit a store and try on the footwear.
The Taiwanese luxury fashion brand Shiatzy Chen, which is often referred to as the Chanel of Taiwan, not only sees Singles Day as a chance to boost sales, but also to acquire new members to sign up on its online boutique store. In the brand’s WeChat post, it encourages followers to register in order to receive a promotional coupons for Singles Day.
The German affordable luxury brand MCM published a WeChat article on November 8, three days before the launch of Singles Day, to offer tips on what readers should buy from the brand and how to be prepared to score the best deals. The article has a direct link to MCM’s new WeChat boutique store, where followers can browse through the Singles Day deals and add interesting items to their carts. The sales event officially starts at 10 am and ends at 9 pm on November 11. Consumers can use WeChat Pay or Alipay to make purchases on its WeChat boutique store.
Capitalizing on the Singles Day fever, Michael Kors released a WeChat campaign one week ahead of the festival, where it listed a wide range of products for readers to purchase. Under every item that the brand promotes in the post, users can click a button that will take them to the Michael Kors’ Chinese online store for them to place orders right away.
Ralph Lauren has launched its promotions on both Alibaba’s Tmall and JD.com to participate in this year’s Singles Day. Its WeChat campaign, nonetheless, seems to be separate from the sales activities on e-commerce sites, with no direct links to facilitate purchases. The post on WeChat focuses on promoting “Polo Bear”-themed items to readers. Additionally, Ralph Lauren is also trying to drive more viewers to officially enroll in the brand’s WeChat customer relationship management (CRM) system. To encourage them to do it, the brand gives away a “Polo Bear” WeChat emoji as a perk once they sign up.
Another American affordable luxury label Kate Spade also requires users to enroll in its CRM system on WeChat to receive Singles Day coupons. Consumers can use them to purchase any Kate Spade products in any China store between November 3-12.
Following the official launch of its flagship store on Tmall earlier this year, Furla has participated in Alibaba’s “See Now Buy Now” fashion show for Singles Day. The goal of the brand’s WeChat account is to direct more users to purchase products on Tmall. The post explains in detail what steps Chinese consumers should take to pre-order from the “See Now Buy Now” fashion show.