‘Tis the Season: PCA Expects Asian Americans to Spend More on Shopping the Upcoming Holiday Season

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Big brands needs to take advantage of the high spending power of Asian Americans.

Asian Americans are savvy shoppers and are very loyal to brands.

With the holiday season fast approaching, PCA sees a great opportunity for brands to focus their marketing efforts on Asian Americans, as they are the fastest growing multicultural segment in the U.S. with an expanding buying power that has risen 523% since 1990 to $718.4 billion in 2012. As stated in Nielsen’s report, if the Asian American population represented its own country, it would be considered the 18th largest economy in the world as buying power in this demographic is expected to top $1 trillion by 2017[1].

According to the Census, Asian American households spend more on apparel at $2,150 per year, which is more than any other ethnicity[2]. Average spending of non-Asian American households is estimated to be $1,725 per year[2]. Furthermore, sources from Nielsen showed that Asian Americans over index on photographic supplies such as digital cameras as well as personal care products such as skin and hair care supplies[1]. According to a survey conducted by iPsos, other frequently purchased items include laptop computers, cars, smartphones and high-definition televisions. Asian Americans are also known to have a passion for eating out, drinking, and wearing branded luxury goods. The 2012 study showed that 66% own private cars, 50% own a smartphone, and 23% own a luxury watch[3].

Asian Americans are savvy shoppers and are very loyal to brands. Therefore, marketing strategies targeting their segment should be focused on value and quality. Furthermore, marketers need to be authentic, pay attention to details, craft a positive message, and avoid using stereotypes. Nielsen’s report pointed out that Asian Americans tend to make decisions in-store, thus marketers need to be able to develop a strong connection at the retail level. It is important to offer value because many Asian American shoppers can be driven by sales or coupon-based discounts. It is also likely that they will compare prices and shop online because Asian Americans have the highest Internet usage penetration in the United States boasting 80% usage compared to 60% for general market, while also having 70% smartphone penetration[1]. Integrating technology is also an effective way to enhance the in-store experience. For example, integrating tablets with retail point-of-sale can provide opportunities for cross-purchase recommendations.

With the ease of travel restrictions and growth of spending power, the number of Chinese travelers is expected to increase by approximately 274% between 2012 and 2016. The main reason Chinese tourists are coming to the U.S. is to shop. They spend an average of $6,000 per visit. Altogether, they will spend $7.2 billion on luxury goods, which is a 29% increase from $5.6 billion in 2012 just during the Spring Festival holiday[4].

“By gaining a deeper understanding of the fastest growing demographics with the highest purchasing power per capita, there is a great opportunity for brands in the Asian American market segment. TV, print, social media, grassroots events, out-of-home, and mobile advertising are all ways brands should deliver messages to and engage with Asian American consumers authentically,” said Rey Lozano, VP of Marketing at PCA.

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About PCA
PCA is a full service minority owned multicultural marketing & communications agency with an emphasis on the Asian American market. For over a decade, the agency has been a leader in providing integrated campaigns for Fortune 1000 companies. Located in Los Angeles and New York, our mission is to provide a unique approach to captivating audiences, become a valued partner to our clients and establish ourselves as leaders in the Asian American community.

PCA has served a wide array of clients including Verizon, Gilead Life Sciences, Warner Music Japan, Samsung Electronics, Philippine Airlines, International Media Distribution, Anheuser Busch, Diageo, Lionsgate Entertainment and the Los Angeles Dodgers.

For more information, please visit http://www.plancagency.com.

Sources:
[1] State of the Asian American Consumer Report by Nielsen (http://www.nielsen.com/content/dam/corporate/us/en/microsites/publicaffairs/StateoftheAsianAmericanConsumerReport.pdf)

[2] Census2009 Average Annual Expenditures of All Consumer Units by Race, Hispanic Origin, and Age of Householder
(http://www.census.gov/compendia/statab/2012/tables/12s0686.pdf)

[3] PAX – The survey of Asia’s Affluent Consumer conducted by Ipsos MediaCT (http://www.ipsos.com/mediact/sites/ipsos.com.mediact/files/PAX.pdf)

[4] Entice the new generation of affluent Chinese tourist on China Elite Focus
(http://www.chinaelitefocus.com/case-study/speeding-us-economic-recovery-with-chinese-tourists/)

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Jessica Wang
PCA
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