The Ten Most Critical Considerations for Brands Launching into China.

launching brand into China

Helping Australian Brands Launch into International Markets
Recently Truly Deeply founders Pete Singline and Dave Ansett attended the annual gen­eral meet­ing in Prague of E3 – the pre­mier global net­work of inde­pen­dent brand strat­egy and com­mu­ni­ca­tion agen­cies, where we were admit­ted into the pres­ti­gious global net­work. E3 con­sist of thirty spe­cial­ist brand and com­mu­ni­ca­tions agen­cies with offices in thirty five cities across twenty six coun­tries — a truly global presence.

Whilst in Prague we met many of the E3 agencies as we began to explore the array of talent and experience represented by the network. Of particular interest was an agency called Adsmith China, located in Shanghai, Adsmith is helping brands from around the launch successfully into the little understood but hugely exciting Chinese market.

A China-based Integrated Marketing and PR Agency
Adsmith China works with clients across a range of categories including; Hospitality, Luxury, Furniture, Consumer, Tourism, Food & Beverage, Technology, Professional Services, Exhibitions, Real Estate, and Education. Adsmith provide an integrated offer that covers; Media Relations, Event Planning and Management, ePR, Chinese Brand Naming, Creative and Marketing Services and Advertising Planning. Adsmith have worked with DSM (the world’s largest vitamin manufacturer), Monster Cable (Beats by Dre headphones), Meliá Hotels International and Shanghai Restaurant Week.

Adsmith China was founded eight years ago by Mike Golden. Mike has 15 years of marketing experience in Asia, including the last 10 years in China and previous 5 years in Japan. He speaks Chinese and Japanese. He has worked directly with clients across most industries, and is originally from the East Coast of the US. Mike studied East Asian Studies at Cornell University, and completed his MBA at the University of California, Berkeley. He has also attended Jiaotong University in Shanghai and Keio University in Tokyo.

The top ten things to consider before launching your brand in China
Mike and the team at Adsmith have managed the successful transition of many brands into the Chinese market. Drawing on his highly valuable expertise, Mike compiled a list of the most important things for businesses to consider when launching a brand into China:

01. Prepare to be persistent and patient. Take your business plan and double or even triple
the amount of time.

02. China isn’t that cheap anymore.

03. HR Headaches. Hire the best people you can find. And then be prepared to let them go
after major disappointments.

04. Visit China 10 times before starting anything. Talk to as many people as you can.

05. Make sure your business has a Chinese brand name and that you trademark it in China.

06. Be aware that ‘mainland’ China, Taiwan (Mandarin or Standard Chinese) and Hong Kong
(Cantonese) use different speech as well as written characters. You will need separate
entry strategies for these regions.

07. Be sure to make business cards (preferably with Chinese and a Chinese version of your
name) before visiting. Don’t use Google Translate for this (one client showed up with
“Black Conquer Death” on his card).

08. Brace yourself for long banquets with potential clients. These may include toasting red
wine in shot glasses, long pours of warm beer, and unidentifiable meats. Sucking this
up is what ‘culturally sensitive’ means.

09. Keep control of your brand image and marketing collaterals. Keeping your international
image is important; the local marketing agency can help make sure the text and photos
make sense in Chinese and portray your brand identity and position correctly.

10. Last but not least…don’t be scared off by all this! The market in China is fantastic and
Chinese are ready to do business. Huanying! 欢迎!

Whether you are a brand struggling to make headway in the Chinese market, with plans to launch there soon, or are keen to develop your brand with an eye to China in the future, we are uniquely positioned to help you achieve those goals. Please feel free to give us a call, we’d be only too happy to help you explore the opportunities for brand success.

Dave Ansett, Bran­da­men­tal­ist
Ministry for Brand Migration

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For more info on Adsmith China, visit their site here:
You can find out more about E3 here:


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