February 26, 2024

Ethelyn Tamayo

Unlock Horizons

A Shift in Mental Model Can Solve Many Asian-Specific Challenges

Introduction

Asia is the world’s fastest-growing market. The number of Asian consumers is expected to reach 1.8 billion by 2020, which would make them the largest worldwide consumer group. At this rate, it will be impossible for marketers to ignore Asia as part of their global strategy. But how do you approach such a vast region? How can you effectively engage these diverse consumers?

Asian consumers are unique, so we need to find ways to engage them differently.

Let’s take a look at some of the ways in which Asian consumers are unique, and how this can inform your strategy.

  • Asian consumers are different from their Western counterparts. They’re more tech-savvy, for example–84{a6d4e250f4dbd7c38290d51a301669b0b15c2bd58d8474132f85a8137f152abc} of online shoppers in China use smartphones to research products before buying them offline, compared with just 68{a6d4e250f4dbd7c38290d51a301669b0b15c2bd58d8474132f85a8137f152abc} in the US (and only 24{a6d4e250f4dbd7c38290d51a301669b0b15c2bd58d8474132f85a8137f152abc} globally). They also tend to be more active on social media; according to Nielsen, 76{a6d4e250f4dbd7c38290d51a301669b0b15c2bd58d8474132f85a8137f152abc} of Chinese social media users engage with brands on WeChat or Weibo each month (versus 50{a6d4e250f4dbd7c38290d51a301669b0b15c2bd58d8474132f85a8137f152abc} globally).

The rise of the Asian consumer is inevitable.

In the last decade, Asia has emerged as an economic powerhouse with a rapidly growing middle class. As a result of this growth, we are seeing more and more consumers across Asia wanting to buy products and services that will improve their lives. The opportunities for brands looking to reach these new customers are vast; however, there are also many challenges associated with selling in this region.

But how can marketers tap into this opportunity?

This is where a shift in mental model comes in. The only way to engage Asian consumers is to embrace the fact that they are different and do not fit into a traditional Western mindset. To put it simply, we need to realize that “Asian” means something entirely different than it did even just 10 years ago–and that this change has implications for everything from product design to marketing strategy.

We need a shift in our mental model.

What’s the point of having a more diverse workforce if you’re not going to use it? The only way we can engage Asian consumers is by embracing the fact that they are different and do not fit into a traditional Western mindset.

The only way to engage Asian consumers is to embrace the fact that they are different and do not fit into a traditional Western mindset

Asian consumers are different. They do not buy the same things as Westerners and have different priorities, values, beliefs and ways of thinking.

If you want to engage them successfully, it is important to understand these differences first and foremost; otherwise you will be unable to connect with them on an emotional level or sell your product effectively.

Conclusion

The rise of the Asian consumer is inevitable. But how can marketers tap into this opportunity? Asian consumers are unique, so we need to find ways to engage them differently. We need a shift in our mental model. The only way to engage Asian consumers is to embrace the fact that they are different and do not fit into a traditional Western mindset.