Miruna Codeanu

China, Apple and PR

In espresso on March 25, 2013 at 7:00 am

China is  the world’s fastest growing economy, a communist country transitioning to capitalism, or it is somewhat internationally agreed. China still holds the instruments of a communist country and mostly controls the public speech, which means China can at any time start a PR war on the consumption of imported goods. China may have realized that it has a giant weapon in its hands: the worlds largest consumer population and control over it. The control China holds over its population may not be only through restrictive methods but also PR even it’s made through the state controlled mass media.

Forbes tells the story of a possible war between Apple and China. Summary: more than 20,000 college students applied for high interest loans. The students were buying fancy electronics, especially from Apple. So, China started attacking Apple on its warranty policies, shorter in China than in other countries, China claims. This happened not only on the national television but also on Weibo (China’s twitter like service) where Apple had 50.000 mentions, mostly negative. Forbes writes this seems a part of a long run campaign against foreign brands. Volkswagen also being mentioned.

Until recently China’s power held in its low cost manufacturing plants, but now it seems its most lethal weapon are its consumers, and it is only normal China will discover the power of advertising and PR war and will want those consumers for its own companies. All the companies are seeing China as an opportunity for growth with the traditional markets sinking, but China’s growth into a consumer market also means higher awareness for the Chinese state and desire to sell its own products to its huge market. It will be a marketing war and it’s not going to be all white tactics all the time, it will also be PR and it will be dirty. This also means China will be the place to be for marketers.

  1. […] week I was writing about Apple facing a PR attack from the Chinese government. A few days ago Tim Cook, Apple CEO released an official letter on the Chinese Apple website […]

  2. […] communism. “Reform” is a more and more common word on Chinese lips. Even the “Apple vs. Chinese Government” shows the fact that the communists are confronted with open market problems. Welcome, China […]

  3. […] a previous post I was talking about China going after Apple. It would seem China is favoring Samsung. No, they aren’t. After accusing Apple to corrupt […]

  4. […] like in many domains, China is able to deliver its own competitor for the brands. Remember that Apple had several troubles in China, although they based their growth expectations on […]

  5. […] more likely to spend more in order to own that status indicator. Remember, the case in China when 20.000 students applied for high interest loans in order to purchase Apple products. Yes, that happens in developing […]

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