Streetwear’s popularity in China has seen an exponential rise over the last five years, notably influenced by Chinese reality shows The Rap of China (on iQIYI) and Street Dance of China (YouKu). This year has seen several brand partnerships between streetwear, luxury, and beauty, like the Off-White x Amorepacific and Longchamp x EU collaborations, and conventions like Sneaker Con and Innersect have drawn eager crowds to Shanghai.
With China’s economy on the rebound, luxury and streetwear brands have been flocking to enter or double down on the market. The fashion industry in China is approximately $331 billion as of 2021, and Statista estimates it will grow to over $454 billion by 2025. Gartner reports that the average daily Baidu index for streetwear-branded terms has seen a year-on-year growth of twelve percent, compared to five and six percent for activewear and fashion. Additionally, Tmall reported that streetwear grew at a sixty-percent higher rate than other clothing categories.
It doesn’t just make numbers sense for streetwear brands to leverage online platforms, but it makes cultural sense, as well. According to the 2019 Streetwear Impact Report by Strategy& and HYPEBEAST, respondents said social media was one of their greatest sources of inspiration. Brands like Off-White have used WeChat, the social app with over 1.2 billion daily users, for exclusive drops. And while shoppers are eager for in-store interactions, that doesn’t mean they are leaving online shopping behind. McKinsey & Company found that 66 percent of Chinese Gen Zers prefer to browse in-store but buy online, with nearly one-third of that number also preferring to browse online. Reflecting this, Statista expects that 55 percent of the total market revenue for fashion will be from online sales by 2023.
With the ubiquity of WeChat, these trends prove that streetwear brands must have a China strategy that is both digitally-savvy and culturally relevant.
Event: In our upcoming webinar, we asked how streetwear brands use the platform to connect with their audience. Register today to join our live webinar exploring “How To Be Successful On WeChat – Streetwear Brands Edition.”
The panelists will be Sky Canaves, content director at Jing Daily; CEO of Kollective Influence, Charlie Gu; and digital strategy expert at ChatLabs, Travis Collins. They will discuss how streetwear’s popularity in China has seen an exponential rise over the last five years and how these brands effectively utilize WeChat, the omnipresent social app in China.
We’ll talk about:
Streetwear’s growing popularity
How streetwear brands launch on WeChat
Innovative digital strategies
The future of streetwear in China
RSVP to receive the discussion link and a free copy of the WeChat Streetwear Benchmark 2021 report.