Willow Smith as ambassador for Chanel China

Interesting piece on Social Brandwatch. The news is filled with bigotry, xenophobia and racism these days and it is difficult for anyone not to acknowledge that.

My thoughts on Brandwatch’s point of view. I am not sure if it is that simple and don’t actually agree.

1. Racism in China is still rampant and it wasn’t too long ago that there was the ad for washing powder in very bad taste that shook the internet (outside of China)

2. Aiming for pre-millennials, apart from the digital medium where information sharing and consumption works the same way, I can’t say for sure that pre-millennials will identify with Willow and want to amulate her style the way, say they would Fan Bing Bing or AngelaBaby.

3. Given how quickly information is shared and created – the rise of snapchat sort of content, we’re moving towards more organic more real, less curated content. Having a young ambassador and (ironically well-curated and opportunistic on time sensitive world events) could catapult the brand in the Chinese market, regardless of racial biased or prejudice.

4. The clothes look great on Willow and she even demonstrated a kung fu kick in that outfit (trying too hard if I may be a little honest). Kudos, however to the brand embracing the global beauty of differences, I am just not sure it’s going to rock the China market and encourage sales. It is unlikely to move the commerce.

Interesting choice for Chanel as it’s doing away with it’s elegance and old school poise image with a very hip new face.

Juliana Loh

Juliana is a freelance marketing communications strategist with more than a decade of experience in the field of advertising, journalism and luxury hospitality, with a focus on China and the Asia Pacific region.

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