Earlier this year, Bain and Company published its China Luxury Market Study for 2014, reporting that the region’s luxury market is undergoing a fundamental shift due to an influx of new, emerging luxury labels as well as an overall economic slow-down. According to their survey of 1400 Chinese consumers, brand loyalty is a key issue for the future, with 70% of all respondents saying that they would like to try new brands and styles. In addition, the luxury brand spend is now competing with alternatives to retail therapy including spas, cruises, and other luxury travel options.
To keep ahead of the game, luxury brands in China are now focusing on the VIP experience for their clients, customising the format and product range according to location or demographics. Omni-channel touchpoints including WeChat and Weibo are becoming equally important as social media and e-commerce extensions have an impact on the luxury consumer’s buying behaviour. Both designers and brands are being challenged to modify their approach as the Chinese consumer becomes not only more sophisticated, but more educated to issues such as design, exclusivity, and quality.