Introduced as an obscure “anti Valentines Day” for the single Chinese population, Singles Day has outgrown Black Friday and Cyber Monday (bringing in over double the combined sales of the two holidays of $38.4bn in the US). It has become the world’s single largest annual 24-hour shopping event, and one of the most pivotal of the year for partner marketing. With an anticipated reduction in footfall for brick and mortar stores this year and financial uncertainty in the West threatening usual holiday spends, brands cannot ignore the sheer growth projections and spending intentions of the Chinese community.
To mark the occasion we were joined by James Coggles, Senior Director UK/FR/DE, for Dealmoon, to discuss how Singles Day, along with other holidays on the Chinese shopping calendar, are fast overtaking their western counterparts. As a shopping community focused specifically on Chinese millennial expats, Dealmoon is a global leader for this audience. Dealmoon has worked alongside the Partnerize Partnership Team to help track performance and work directly with specific brands. Here we tap into Dealmoon’s expertise and advice on how brands can understand their unique audience, and plan accordingly for 2021 holidays around the world.
James, How have you seen Singles Day evolve over the years? How do you compare it to Black Friday?
Year on year Singles Day has grown and evolved from its origins as a day simply designed to target single people in China with lucrative deals. Fast forward to 2020 and brands globally have adopted this date as a key trading period trying to entice these high spending shoppers.
Initially, many brands took the date 11:11 and suggested running 11% off promotions, not only to coincide but also to offer a less aggressive deal than those planned on Cyber Weekend. However, brands are now finding value in creating tailored, exclusive offers to this audience for this holiday. 24-hour flash sales, tiered spends, sale exclusives designed to drive high volumes and unique gift with purchase offers featuring consumers’ favourite SKU’s/products, are now the norm.
Further, despite actually being celebrated on 11:11, across Dealmoon apps and sites we launch our Singles Day offers from the 1st November. Many of the brands we work with understand how competitive this period has become and therefore opt to stagger their exclusives to maximise sales throughout. In terms of comparing to Black Friday, most Western brands still will have larger % promotions across Cyber Weekend, however, for Singles Day we are seeing a substantial increase in the aforementioned exclusives and offers specifically targeting the Chinese ex-pat consumer. Certainly, greater thought and strategy is going into devising these both from the team at Dealmoon and brands’ internal marketing teams.
How are you seeing Singles Day be adopted in other markets? Are you seeing non-Chinese advertisers embrace the event outside of China? In SEA? In North America? In EMEA?
Singles Day is now adopted by brands all over the world not just in China. To give some greater indication here, last year over 65% of advertisers we work with participated in Singles Day, offering exclusives to our audience. This year the projected figure is closer to 75%. In actual fact, the 25% that don’t participate and perhaps rely upon Black Friday, are undoubtedly missing out on a wealth of potential sales.
What are the other global significant holidays this community celebrates that brands should have on our radars?
Other significant holidays brands/advertisers should be focusing on include:
- Chinese New Year (this usually falls around January/February)
- 520 Day (this takes place on the 20th May, also fun fact 520 in Chinese translates as I love you). A large proportion of brands have recently started to take greater note of this holiday in particular. We are especially seeing many of the key players in the beauty industry customising relevant exclusives and even new collection launches to coincide with this date.
- Chinese Valentines Day (August)
- Golden Week (Early October)
- And of course, not forgetting, Dealmoon’s Birthday (March), where we bring together our community to celebrate, with a host of brands contributing some exceptional offers year after year.
- There are also several smaller events such as Doubles Day (12:12) and the Dragon Boat Festival.
These key days are ones you should have on your radar as they will offer excellent opportunities to target this audience during high purchase intention periods and gain unrivalled awareness for your brand.
Where have you seen changes in spending from Dealmoon’s community in light of the events of 2020?
In terms of spend, unlike many publishers, we haven’t seen huge shifts in verticals. However, beauty has continued an upward trajectory with our audience investing greater amounts in products for their skincare routines. In terms of fashion, there has been a small shift from outerwear to more luxury leisurewear. Health also, probably unsurprisingly, has spiked, with a host of new brands joining Dealmoon in order to get their products in front of our lucrative audience.
What are a few new product categories that are performing better than others in 2020?
We have started to see homeware really pick up, this includes kitchen appliances where we are seeing excellent performance. Beauty tech sales have also grown tenfold. Food delivery services have been an interesting new category for Dealmoon and they’re seeing great results, especially for new customer acquisition. Alongside the large delivery players and grocery stores, we are onboarding a brilliant array of niche brands who offer a unique appeal and are also performing well.
How has Partnerize been able to work with you and the global Dealmoon team to help facilitate better partnerships?
Partnerize has always been the best in the market in terms of recommending new clients to Dealmoon. The Partnerize team has the greatest understanding of our platform and many channels and have taken the time to gain exceptional knowledge and insight into how Dealmoon can benefit their clients. This close relationship runs internationally with our UK, US and AUS teams collaborating and working closely to provide advertisers with a thorough overview of the returns this audience can afford.
Can you give us any insight into the results you’re expecting to see from Singles Day this year?
One of the biggest insights I can share is our expectation that whilst 11:11 will have the highest traffic and sales, the curve of spending will be slightly different. We expect that due to the change in dates for Amazon Prime Day, some brands will launch their 11:11 activity earlier planned, which if anything, will only prolong the buying period and result in greater sales.
We are projecting strong YOY growth for Singles Day 2020, with both an increase in advertisers involved and a substantial increase in the activity from participating brands. More so than ever, the competitive landscape is prompting brands we work with to connect with our data and analytics teams to develop more granular approaches to the promotions they offer. Examining trends from last year and across other holidays, we have made significant efforts to hone in on what our audiences buy/love about our client brands so that we can work together to create amazing campaigns that truly align with consumer desires.