Despite the global economic crisis, the luxury market has not faltered in China. Indeed, in the country concentrating the most billionaires in the world, this market has every reason to be successful. This is for example the case of the high end luxury market, the one of spirits, but also the one of cigars!
Though some people might think cigar has become old-fashioned. It is far from being the truth. The cigar is still today a product highly prized by rich gentlemen. The cigar market largely developed itself during the last 15 years. While the majority of fans still think that a good cigar must be Cuban, many producing countries compete with the producer of “Havana”. The main competitors are now Nicaragua, the Dominican Republic, Honduras and Brazil. Cigar varieties have never been so numerous! Even Switzerland got into the cigar making and the Swiss brand “Davidoff” distinguished itself from others thanks to the quality of its cigars. Nicaragua even innovated by creating organic cigars, with a brand called “Plasencia”. Those kind of products could be highly marketed in China !
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Cuban cigars are still the most famous. In fact, sales of Havanas grew by more than 10% in 2017. Most of this increase was driven by the strong Chinese consumption. Although Europe is still the producer’s largest market, the Asia-Pacific region now accounts for 15% of its exportations! China is now in the third position of the largest consumers, just behind France and Spain.
Why is China a promising market for cigars?
A clientele who loves luxury and fine dining
While tobacco can have a very bad image in some countries (the United States for example), it does not benefit from this image in China. In addition, the cigar is perceived as a luxury accessory to accompany the tasting of a good meal and a good drink. The moment of the meal is an important moment in the Chinese culture and it is not rare that they organize big banquets for the important occasions. It is therefore a very appropriate time to share a cigar with friends, family or colleagues.
Richer and richer, younger and younger
The number of billionaires in China is growing, and they are getting younger! This new generation is highly attracted by everything that is new, unique and “bling-bling”. The image is very important in China, and the young billionaires love to show off about their fortune by buying exceptional products. For example, cigars infused in cognac Louis XIII. They are produced by the American company Gurkha and are well known to be the most expensive cigars in the world. Indeed, to enjoy this privilege, you will have to pay 1050 dollars the unit! But in China it is important to be well seen in society. That is also why young Chinese billionaires like to share their luxury purchases on social networks.
A rising market
The Chinese demand is so big that experts of the sector planned that this market would experience a growth of more than 10% in the years to come! In addition, the market is getting more and more diversified. Today, there are cigars fitting all tastes and budgets. What also delight the Chinese middle class, which develops and sees its purchasing power increase. However, the cigarillo market is not very developed. As it is more associated to a cigarette than a “little cigar”, it should not have a strong growth in China in the years to come.
How to seduce Chinese consumers?
Have an adapted communication
To be noticed by the Chinese, it is necessary to look for them on their favorite ground: the digital! It is inconceivable to think of succeeding in China without having a digital marketing strategy adapted to the Chinese market. Indeed, it is very different from those used in the West! Networks are different, as are consumers. We must therefore understand the expectations of the Chinese and know how to use their own networks: WeChat, Weibo, Baidu …
Manage your e-reputation
Before trusting a brand, the Chinese will search about it online. They are wary of the promises made by advertisements. In addition, before spending a nice sum for a luxury product, they will prefer to make sure of the quality of the product. So you need an official site in Mandarin, well referenced on Baidu. Your site must be stylish and tell the story of your brand. You will also need to manage your new community on social networks to convey your brand, your culture, your passion for the cigar and your story!
In order to sell your product on Chinese territory, you will need to find quality distributors, which will convey the luxury image of your brand and the quality of your product. Another effective way to distribute your products in China is to use e-commerce. This technique of consumption is massively used by the Chinese. This saves them time, money, while looking at the opinions of previous consumers!
Do you want enter in the Chines market? It’s not easy but not impossible. You just have to adopt the right marketing strategies, and for doing this, you have to find a good digital marketing agency.
Gentlemen Marketing Agency(GMA) is your best solution for reach your Chinese target.
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