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12 Aug
2012

It's the fourth week of submitting inquiries to you. I'm citing observations and others' opinions about Asian consumer behavior that have attracted my curiosity. I hope these issues are also of interest to you and help you to better know the shopper and what your business needs to do to cater to them.

As you know, the weekly distribution of topics remains accessible on my blog and you can join in the discussion at any time. One final note: If you have had trouble posting or recording your post on the blog, please excuse the difficulty and email me with you experiences.

Physical Appearance Status

This study is meant to determine to what extreme the Asian consumer will go to satisfy their desire to improve or gain status. But in several articles published recently, it has been noted that some factions of the public in the region will take to extremes to protect or change their appearance is a quest for a desired level of status. In SCMP, a feature was printed about the growing popularity of "face masks" wore by sun bathers at local beaches.

Photo from SCMP

For many middle-class Chinese women, the desire for pale skin outweighs the shocked looks and joking comments by fellow beach-goers. The publication quoted an idiom, which women, young and old know by heart, "Fair skin conceals a thousand flaws."

In Shanghai, hospitals report a growing trend of "minors, mostly 15 to 18 years old, often received double eyelid surgery to widen the appearance of the eye, the least risky and most popular cosmetic procedure for minors. But having a face lift is not recommended until a person is at least 18 years old." Other requested cosmetic surgeries, requiring implants, are also refused by the hospitals for teens whose bodies are still developing. This growth in cosmetic surgery requests by this market segment is fueled by "dreams of stardom among youngsters and a more open attitude by parents."

http://www.shanghaidaily.com/sp/article//Metro/2012/08/08/Plastic+surgery+trendy+among+minors+but+risky

What do you think of these status-driven trends? Do you think the desire to look attractive or of a specific cultural level encourage extreme, risky or dangerous behavior? And what about parents attitude towards it?

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16 Jul
2012

It's week 2 and there is a new inquiry to look at. You still can go to the blog home page and continue to review past discussions.

Have you seen the online video of the young woman throwing a childish tantrum in a Chinese car dealership, because her fiancé won't agree to buy the car she wants? In the video, she proceeds to climb inside the car she wants and drives back and forth inside the showroom until her fiancé pulls out his credit card and promises to buy the car?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wIqvwZyNEmE

This incident was followed by many other YouTube videos asking men and women about what worldly possessions are important to a successful match relationship in China. There is also an interesting opinion on this event in an article titled, Money Honey: The cost of dating in China, from eChinacites.com.

http://www.echinacities.com/expat-corner/money-honey-the-cost-of-dating-in-china.html

For this week's discussion, what is your opinion? Is this a bit of sensationalism by a media outlet looking to spotlight the worst of Chinese consumer behavior, or are there a significant number of Chinese available singles seeking materialistic rewards from their partners rather than love?

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