We are going to analyze the marketing strategy of the Italian Eco-Friendly Brand Wewood in China
The Spirit of Environment-Friendly Watch Brand
What is the first idea in your mind when you hear the name of the brand WeWOOD? Something related to the environment? Yes, you are right, however, the idea about the brand is way deeper. Let’s see how it all started..
Once upon a time in 2009, an eco-smart entrepreneur from Italy came up with the idea to create a brand that will combine the mix of environmental commitment, Italian quality, and fashion. Isn’t it an amazing idea regarding the current environmental situation in the world? The brand was created in Florence, a city well known for its beauty, art, and creativity. That is a very unique case when the artistic heritage of Florence collides with the commitment to save Mother Nature and it ends up with something beautiful like WeWOOD. WeWOOD is reflecting the Italian ability to create unique items in combination with the need for greater care and attention to our planet.
The WeWOOD line of wooden watches is a combination of style, luxury, and environmental responsibility. Inspired by the beauty of the Tuscan territory, WeWOOD timepieces reflect the great cultural and artistic heritage of Florence. All watches are designed with high attention to detail and an eco-conscious mind. We use different types of wood, each with a peculiar color and characteristics, making them a perfect accessory for any outfit. Being made of 100% wood, WeWOOD watches are non-toxic, free of chemicals, and extremely lightweight.
With WeWOOD Stay Fashionable & Nature Friendly – Be Close to The Nature
The Brand has a great strategy to save our planet “You Buy a WeWOOD, We plant a Tree”. Their reforestation program started in 2010 in partnership with American forests, the oldest national nonprofit conservation organization in the country for the protection of America’s forests. Therefore, WeWOOD restores forests that were inevitably harmed by fire disasters providing new homes for black bears, elks, and lynxes. In addition, WeWood has planted thousands of trees along the Mexico Rio de las Vacas which is home to many threatened species. Planted woods provide shade to the river banks, lower the water temperature, increasing oxygen levels in the water. In that specific area, they have planted more than 100 000 trees, which created a great effect on the health of the environment.
Furthermore, WeWOOD is planning to expand the collection of their watch lines and improve the quality of the product and by 2020 plant 1 million trees.
To achieve their goals to save the Planet, WeWOOD teamed up with two more environmental organizations around the world such as Trees for the future and Treedom. Internationally WeWOOD in collaboration with Trees for the Future, it has planted over 65 million trees in 30 countries from Asia and Africa to the Americas. These organizations are really making a difference.
WeWOOD Crafted Collections
All of the WeWOOD timepieces are crafted and made of wood, in particular, they use various hardwoods such as red wing celtis, ebony, maple and guaiaco and are combined with state-of-the-art miyota movements. Crafted timepieces are made of 100% natural wood and completely free of toxic materials. The important thing to understand about WeWOOD is that only reclaimed wood, like your old table, your grandpa’s old rocking chair, broken instruments and industrial scrap wood is being used in the creation of watches. The watches brand has a great and distinctive advantage that creates a commitment to sustainability and collaboration between multiple skilled specialists who have created and crafted unique timepieces.
WeWOOD is a conversation piece combining the elements of fashion and environmental impact, whoever sees the watch of the brand wants to know about the story behind the brand. People are willing to be a part of this great mission.
Gentle crafting of timepieces
Crafting watches made of wood is quite hard work since wood materials are pretty fragile. The Brand is very careful when it comes to the topic of which wood to select. Chosen wood should be sturdy and at the same time with a peculiar color and characteristics to look great. Such types of wood as Indian rosewood, Blackwood from Africa and Maple are highly used in the crafting of timepieces, remarkably that only recycled wood is being used. Most of the parts of watches are handcrafted, all of the materials are hypo-allergenic and natural and completely free of toxic and artificial materials, and no dyes are being used. WeWOOD timepieces are dedicated to performing and last for a very long time.
All watches are designed with high attention to detail and an eco-conscious mind. making them a perfect accessory for any outfit. Being made of 100% wood, WeWOOD watches are non-toxic, free of chemicals, and extremely lightweight.
HOW WeWOOD WENT THROUGH CHALLENGES IN CHINA
Successfully conquered the Chinese market
Nowadays China is a worldwide leader in luxury watch consumption. The Chinese Watch market is quite a complicated business and it requires not only capital and resources but also know-how to be outstanding in the market.
In China, it’s all about unique designs
Moreover, it has been noticed that a lot of Chinese luxury consumers have already collected all famous brands and are now interested in new brands with great designs that help them to express their tastes and uniqueness.
Since Chinese consumers are covering a significant portion of luxury sales in the world, their demands are changing and it became quite complicated to cater to them. The meaning of ‘good watches’ in their eyes is not necessarily equal to a very expensive or famous model. They may choose to buy a watch because they like the unique design; or because there is a good story for them to share with others when discussing why they acquire the watches.
Remarkably that Chinese consumers are heavily influenced by luxury advertising and like to buy famous designs that they see are promoted heavily. However, the Chinese may be unique when it comes to seeking out what they think as being culturally defining designs. (see Marketers have to be smart in China).
Adapt your message to China
It is not a secret that establishing a luxury brand is a complicated business, requiring not only capital and resources but also know-how. As Chinese consumers make up a significant portion of luxury sales in the world and have become sophisticated consumers of luxury items, how to cater to them becomes a tricky business.
WeWOOD creates all-natural wooden watches from reclaimed and recycled wood and material to create an eco-friendly, fashionable line of watches.
The company contacted GMA because it is willing to expand its brand in China and is looking for a trusted partner to aid them in this process. However, when WeWOOD came to China, they had to start from scratch as any other company that is entering the Chinese Market.
Especially for WeWOOD, in the beginning, had to adapt its strong message to Chinese consumers. Why? Because for Chinese consumers the environmental message had no impact on them. Simply even because of the idea that there are totally different values and features Chinese consumers will appreciate more about the product that they are willing to buy.
Moreover, timepiece designs are seen as bestowing auspicious blessings to them, and the Chinese often like the idea of wearing something they feel will grant them some type of good fortune or will have a unique story behind that accessory item.
In this sense, WeWOOD had a great advantage, since their watches were completely wood crafted which made those watches really light. The innovative combination of wood and Italian design had great success among Chinese millennials. Building the WeWOOD brand in China was not that easy at the beginning, however, the special digital strategy was tailored especially for WeWOOD. One of the obstacles for the brand was the improvement of the Brand’s visibility among Chinese consumers. It took some time to adapt the WeWOOD brand, so in this sense, the campaign was focused on building a strong e-Reputation. The brand leveraged such Social Media platforms as WeChat and Weibo. Within the successful collaboration of WeWOOD and GMA, the e-Reputation of the Brand improved significantly. Since only in one month the Company gained followers on Weibo and on WeChat. Therefore, the increased brand awareness drove the Brand’s sales from its WeChat store and drew interest toward the brand.
How to Succeed in the Chinese Watch Market?
ONLINE MEDIA & MOBILE MARKETING DOMINATES
In China online really dominates. Traditional media and offline marketing are dying the world over. China really embraced the digital revolution and now has the largest internet penetration rate for a developing nation globally, at a whopping 65%. There are also 550 million smartphones in China.
As China’s online infrastructure continually improves with better connectivity so does the role of a comprehensive digital mobile marketing strategy that really works.
You need to engage in establishing a positive reputation as well as increasing the visibility of your brand, business, or product/service. This needs to be in front of the most applicable, target demographic for your business proposition. The key is to be focused and develop your status on the platforms & sources where your target is most active.
BUILD YOUR E-REPUTATION
In China, you will need to start building your e-Reputation, simply due to the reason that English content, and positive reviews from western media platforms will not be visible on the Chinese net. Mandarin Chinese Characters are used in the vast majority of internet research (over 97,5%).
Remember that the Chinese web is a unique ecosystem that requires a fresh and creative approach, right Chinese platforms should be chosen to build your visibility & reputation in order to target your consumers.
Forums are very important and popular in China, even though being in many parts of the world the Chinese are still highly active & engaged in community threads about many topics. Reasonable to mention that developing a positive reputation on sites such as Little Red Book and Weibo.
In order to gain good E-reputation among Chinese consumers you should work on creating strategic content, which means that your products should represent high-quality status symbols. One of the great advantages is that the byword for quality in China is usually perceived as ‘international’ products, due to the fact establishing your own business as a quality foreign brand can allow you to get paid dividends in the long run.
IMPORTANCE OF BRANDING
Chinese consumers by being obsessed with branding, purchase brands but not products. Chinese society is more likely fixed on reputation or let’s say the notion of “face”, due to that issue it is clear to understand that in order to express their “face” the most typical way of it is purchasing brands. In a society, which is definitely led by consumer needs, when it comes to branding you need to consider this individual expression’s new-found desire.
INFLUENCERS WORK BETTER THAN EXPENSIVE KOLS TO INCREASE THE BRAND’S PROMOTION
Influencers choose WeWood Watch
Engagement via Influencers
It is vital to keep your consumers entertained with live videos and be always creative in enabling various campaigns, involving Key opinion leaders (KOLs). When it comes to KOLs they have gathered large followings around themselves. Moreover, businesses or brands can recruit them due to the fact that they have a high influence. Specific communities and demographics can be targeted by different KOLs by providing quality targeted exposure. It should be clear that considering investing in key opinion leaders (KOLs), you need to choose Chinese influencers the fact that they can directly link your brand with your targeted audiences.
The main point related to KOLs, the best approach, in this case, is that they should have created an “echo chamber” effect by using simultaneously the number on different platforms to post about the brand. That effect supports the brand’s legitimacy if lots of influencers are posting.
DO YOU NEED EXPERTS IN THE FASHION CHINESE MARKET?
You might need to get a quality guide, which is vital in order to be able to navigate the Chinese market. We at GMA are an international team of 60 marketers, copywriters, publishers, and ad experts. We work in plenty of fields beginning from branding, and ad strategy to lead generation. We are willing to be our clients’ team in China and build strong and long-term, serious relationships based on results and the achievement of clear KPIs.