Globalization is an unstoppable trend and a direction in which many Chinese brands are currently developing. Companies must have a global mindset, whether they have a global business or not.
Over the past 40 years of reform and opening-up, China has continuously promoted its opening-up policy while practicing innovation, which has created opportunities for outbound investment. After joining the World Trade Organization (WTO), China has accelerated its opening-up process and realized the historical turn from "introducing" to "going out" and from following to leading.
As China's economy enters a new phase of steady growth, overseas markets become more attractive than in the past amid intensifying domestic volatility. In addition, the national government and relevant departments have been issuing a series of favorable policies in the field of international expansion. Besides, the increase in the level of openness towards the outside world has further motivated domestic brands to enter overseas markets. Lastly, the increasing improvement of the digital economy infrastructure including supply chain, mobile social commerce, the Internet and the rise of logistics, payment, SaaS/ERP and other tools have directly reduced the cost and significantly increased the convenience of going abroad.
As we step into this New Year, EqualOcean officially kicks off the project called "Global 100: Go Global and Co-creating the Future", in which our analysts will sit down with frontline industry practitioners and enterprise leaders to hear their opinions about Chinese brands going overseas. We hope to help brands be seen, recognized and valued through our professionalism and credibility.
The following is the first in this series, conducted by our analyst Yiran Xing after her talk with Wang Lijun, Chief Marketing Officer of zdeer (Chinese:左点).
zdeer (Chinese:左点) is a Chinese technology healthcare and healthy lifestyle solutions provider with the value proposition of "freedom, leisure and healthy". The company has two main categories of products, namely medical technology products and healthy lifestyle products.
The former sector includes hearing aids, insomnia treatment device, rhinitis treatment device, smart nasal washer, red light skin-therapy, smokeless moxibustion box, electric cupping device and so on; while the healthy lifestyle products include bian stone massager (Bian stone, micro-crystalline chert,which is mostly used as the raw material for Chinese medical instruments and health care products), smart foot bath, knee massager, eye massager, smart oral sprayer, air pillow and other items.
EqualOcean: zdeer is a rather young brand. What do you see as zdeer's differentiation in the consumer healthcare market?
zdeer: While most people think of us as a consumer healthcare brand, we define ourselves as a tech brand that makes healthcare products. We hope to present an image that is aesthetic, technological, and trustworthy. At the moment, we have relatively few competitors in this track regarding products, services, operation systems, or marketing.
EqualOcean: We see that zdeer does not intend to win by competing on the price. What are the unique selling points of zdeer's products and who is your target audience?
zdeer: Our principle in developing new products is to innovate in terms of the form, function, and aesthetics of existing products. Combining traditional therapy and technology, we created smart cupping products, moxibustion devices, and Gua Sha (Chinese:刮痧) products. We make automatic hearing aids look more like headphones, adding aesthetic value and technological improvement to traditional hearing aids. We bring new life to existing products through technology.
We make healthcare products targeting different groups of people. We have developed product lines for people suffering from rhinitis, insomnia, and hearing impairment, and our regiment products target the younger generation. zdeer's target audience is aged between 20 and 35 years old, with female consumers being the majority. Female consumers have higher spending power and willingness to spend money, which is also a major change we observed in recent years.
EqualOcean: What changes do you think have occurred in the consumer market over the past two years?
zdeer: The COVID-19 pandemic has slowed the growth of many companies, but we remain optimistic. We have observed a change in consumer attitudes, with consumers caring more about the emotional value, sense of ceremony, and brand identity, and seeking products that look premium. Also, consumer spending power is increasing as the economy grows, personal income rises, and urban development goes further.
EqualOcean: How does zdeer lay out in terms of channels？
zdeer: New media platforms play an important role in our online marketing. Douyin (Chinese version of TikTok) is one of our key channels. Regarding offline channels, we collaborate with pharmacies and distributors. We have no self-operated stores at the moment, and we intend to focus on online channels in the future.
EqualOcean: Can you explain zdeer's marketing expansion in the overseas market?
zdeer: Globalization is an unstoppable trend and a direction in which many Chinese brands are currently developing. Companies must have a global mindset, whether they have a global business or not.
We have aimed to achieve globalization since the early days of the foundation, which is why its English trademark predates the Chinese trademark.
Currently, zdeer has business in North America, the Middle East and South East Asia. In addition to its own official website, zdeer has also joined Amazon, AliExpress and Yami.
EqualOcean: How do you see the future of the consumer sector?
zdeer: We believe that there are two major paths for consumer brands to take in the future. One is to build the brand by advocating a certain lifestyle that attracts consumers, take Lululemon as an example. The other is to lead the market with technological advancement, say self-cleaning robot maker Narwal and drone maker DJI. We hope to invest in technology while also providing aesthetic value.
EqualOcean: How do Chinese businesses prepare themselves for the opportunities that lie ahead as the economy bounces back after the relaxation of COVID-19 policies?
zdeer: We need to keep in mind that we should not rely on one single strategy. Making short-lived trendy products or investing only in celebrity marketing will not bring sustainable growth. Ultimately, we need high-quality products to win over consumers. Businesses need to hire a professional team of marketing experts with knowledge of building long-lasting brands, improving marketing content, and attracting consumers from various channels.
EqualOcean focuses on serving Chinese companies in their road to globalization and helping overseas companies and organizations to grasp China's development opportunities. It believes in the value of globalization, with the mission of connecting China and the world.
For Chinese clients with globalization needs, EqualOcean provides overseas market and industry research, international branding, data products, and overseas resource-building services. For overseas clients who want to grasp China's development opportunities, EqualOcean provides Chinese market and industry research, investment target due diligence, data products and resource-building services.
EqualOcean continues to focus on globalization and invites professionals from various industries to provide valuable information and opinions by contacting email@example.com. We also welcome companies that need to expand internationally or want to exchange overseas-related topics to scan the QR code and contact us directly.
Let's be together for a shared future!