Monday morning we had a lecture given my Professor Liu Jianhua which mainly covered how the culture of the Chinese people affects marketing products to consumers. I learned that there are three things that are very important in the Chinese culture: an agricultural economy, centralization and Confucianism. An agricultural economy is important so that the people may remain self supported. Centralization is key for a number of reasons, which include: for stability of the country, for balance and harmony among its citizens and for interdependence. The last aspect of the Chinese culture is Confucianism which provides the structure for many beliefs, morals and ethical rules followed by the Chinese people.
We also learned how important "face" is in the Chinese culture and thus how important it is to those marketing products to consumers. There is a group psychology in Chinese consumerism that is much different from that of the United States. For instance, when purchasing clothing in the United States many individuals strive to be unique in their material purchases. This uniqueness may give an individual more status or heighten a peer's opinion of that individual because they have left "the bandwagon" and are celebrated for their differences in taste. In China however the culture is geared towards respecting those who fit in with the group and consumerism here is driven by "they have that car, or shirt, or product, so I must have that too." When marketing to the Chinese people companies have to be aware of this desire for people to match what those in their group have purchased, and not as much focus needs to be put on uniqueness or products that differentiate people from the group.