Luxury fashion label Marc Jacobs is going after China with a big marketing push and more store openings.
The brand plans to add five to six stores a year to the 25 stores it has on the Mainland. It will also add three to five new stores to the 13 stores it has in Hong Kong, a key destination for Mainland shoppers.
Marc Jacobs’s chief executive, Bertrand Stalla-Bourdillon, is bullish on the Chinese market and aims to make China the brand’s top foreign market. The strategy is to replicate the same success it has had with the Japanese market.
“Clearly the mainland China market has great potential. After Japan, we want to go for China. Japan is our No 1 foreign country market for now and I think China has the potential to be the next Japan,” Stalla-Bourdillon told the South China Morning Post.
He observed that more Mainland Chinese are visiting Marc Jacobs stores in Europe and the U.S., but believes that to succeed with Chinese consumers, a brand needs to invest heavily in China despite the high percentage of Chinese buying luxury goods overseas.
Addressing the big price gaps between luxury products sold on the Mainland and elsewhere, Stalla-Bourdillon says, “Duties need to be reflected in the retail price, but I try to make sure there aren’t any huge gaps in prices. The first thing to do is to please consumers in China rather than create crazy price tags.”
“For China and Chinese consumers, I think our brand has to be there, so we will invest a lot in our distribution network in the coming years,” he said. The company will triple its marketing and promotion budget.
Initial focus will be Beijing and Shanghai where demand is strong. The Shanghai store has over 2,000 visitors on average each day.
“I think Chinese consumers can learn very fast. Three or four years ago, they may have been merely chasing logos. Now they seek more than that. The chase now is more about lifestyle, social status and how the brand can fit them. It’s not just about a logo any more,” said Stalla-Bourdillon.
photo credit: marc jacobs