China's Youth Connected, Ready to Spend

A new report from Pearl Research, released last week, provides plenty of fodder for marketers interested in the Chinese youth market. The 16-20 cohort, which is 320 million strong, wields growing spending power as it enjoys unprecedented access to electronic media and foreign consumer goods.

The report, titled "The Phoenix Generation: Insight into China's Youth," also offers advice to marketers trying to reach this desirable demographic. Pearl says the 16-30 cohort has about $135 billion in spending power annually.

Computers are highly accessible to young populations in China's urban areas, often with Internet connections. According to Pearl, 90% of their interview panel had played online or packaged games, and panelists were also heavy users of online chat and Audition, a casual dating game. Overall, people under the age of 25 represent 50% of China's 162 million users.

Chinese youth are also avid consumers of foreign products, including American pop culture, with entertainers like Coldplay, Britney Spears, Linkin Park and Eminem listed by panelists among their favorites. Favorite brands for status-conscious Chinese youth include Nike, Louis Vuitton, Sony and Nokia. The report also noted increasing interest in the automotive category--including, for example, the rise of a drag-racing culture in Beijing.



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