May 20 runs in vogue with youth, merchants

Source:Global Times Published: 2020/5/20 19:03:40

Western luxury brands engage Chinese young customers on May 20

Street photographers take pictures at Sanlitun Taikoo shopping arcade in Chaoyang district, Beijing, on July 3, 2019. (Photo: Wang Qi/GT)

May 20 runs in vogue in China, as the day is celebrated by Chinese youth. The three Arabian numbers "520" sound something like "I love you" in oral Chinese, and the day now belongs to the daters, and, the cunning merchants too. 

Among them is Coach, the accessible luxury brand from the US that actively promoted its products on May 20. 

On China's e-commerce platform, the brand offered coupons that gave a discount of 200 yuan ($28.1) for 1,000 yuan in spending. On, the brand also offered coupons and considerable discounts to ratchet up sales. 

On the brand's WeChat page, there were also significant discounts for May 20. "Choose an enduring gift to express everlasting love," read one of the promotion slogans.

Last year, Coach drew broad criticism on China's internet after it was discovered to have listed China's HKSAR and the island of Taiwan as independent countries on its T-shirts. 

Many Chinese internet users haven't forgotten this.

"The internet doesn't seem to have a memory," one user commented, "Coach is having a lot of discounts recently, but I need to remind people that it insulted Chinese sovereignty last year. (The Chinese model) Liu Wen broke a contract with the brand. It is definitely a brand I have no desire to spend my money."

Many other Western luxury brands held "520" promotion campaigns, and many of them also touched a nerve with Chinese consumers in the past, including the French brand Givenchy.

Yang Qingshan, a professor at the University of International Business and Economics in Beijing, told the Global Times that luxury brands have been among the hardest hit during the onslaught of COVID-19, and many expect the speedy economic recovery of China to boost their sales. 

"For luxury brands, China is a market that is too attractive to pass up," Yang said. "It is a good time for them to launch promotional campaigns and grow their brand image among Chinese customers."

Newspaper headline: Western luxury brands engage Chinese young customers on May 20


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