Japanese consumers

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  • Publié le : 28 novembre 2010
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What comes to your mind when you think about Japan? You may think about cherry blossoms, traditional geishas, tea ceremonies, humanoid robots, manga or even high consumerism.
In fact, Japan is a world composed of massive cities where people are always surrounded by advertising, noise, screens and lights. This country could be a commercial paradise for some people or a world difficult tounderstand for others.

What are the roots of high consumerism in Japan?

What made Japanese companies so successful?

Marketing strategies are not a secret anymore for Japanese experts. They know exactly the means to draw the customer’s attention to their products or services.

In the 60’s, the Japanese households followed the “American Way of Life”. They were alwayslooking for new electronic domestic appliances. They also began travelling around the world with their unforgettable camera or their rucksack.

Nevertheless, the events which happened during the 90’s slowed this trend down.
In fact, the burst of the financial bubble, the earthquake in Kobe and the gas attack in Tokyo changed purchasing behaviors and priority purchases.

However, theJapanese society is characterized by high consumerism, and women are especially affected by this phenomenon.

In a society where it is complicated to express one’s self or to find a husband, women have concentrated on their work and hobbies.

What do women like the most? Of course, they like doing shopping.
Even if women remain the core target, there are also other customers’ categories forwhich each company establishes a concise and malicious strategy.

A. The best customer

The customer that all Japanese companies tend to captivate is the unpredictable young Japanese lady. In fact, girl power has been having a big impact in Japan.
The stereotype of the best customer is often a woman who is wage-earning, 30 years old, single, and without any child.

Most of these ladieshave beautiful makeup, a Vuitton bag and most of the time; they look at their mobile phone. The typical lady likes to go shopping, to go to a luxury hotel near her house or to an expensive French restaurant.
She likes to read and she selects products according to their high prices and to their fashionable design. She also cares about food caloric intake.
In most cases, she lives with herparents and consequently, she has no expenses for rent, food or other necessary things. Consequently, the money she earns is devoted exclusively to her personal expenses.
However, she does not only think about clothes or beauty products, but she is also a bon vivant woman who thinks about her carrier and her future.

Addicted to high consumerism, she embodies the perfect customer for most of theJapanese companies. Before thinking about getting married, she thinks about herself and she enjoys life as much as she can.

B. Single men

From Monday to Friday, the typical single man wears “Salary men” clothes, that is to say, a suit, sparkling shoes and mainstream accessories. He cannot leave his house without his mobile and his I-pod.
On weekends, as he goes out with his friends,he may spend a lot of time choosing his best clothes, or getting his hair done.
Having many hobbies, the Japanese single men try to increase their knowledge. They like reading business books about the way of investing on the Stock Exchange or about leading Japanese companies such as Toyota or Matsushita.
Each day, their purchases are routinely similar: cigarettes, sugar free coffee in themorning, lunch boxes and possibly take-aways for dinner.

With no particular financial problem, single men are perfect targets for most of the companies or service providers. However, it has become harder to convince them to buy as they are concerned about their future and think seriously before spending money. They prefer saving money for ulterior purchases and they do not pay attention to...
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