What Chinese Want: Culture, Communism and the Modern Chinese Consumer

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What Chinese Want: Culture, Communism and the Modern Chinese Consumer

by Tom Doctoroff

St. Martin's Press | May 22, 2012 | Hardcover

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Today, most Americans take for granted that China will be the next global superpower. But despite the nation''s growing influence, the average Chinese person is still a mystery - or, at best, a baffling set of seeming contradictions - to Westerners who expect the rising Chinese consumer to resemble themselves. Here, Tom Doctoroff, the guiding force of advertising giant J. Walter Thompson''s (JWT) China operations, marshals his 20 years of experience navigating this fascinating intersection of commerce and culture to explain the mysteries of China. He explores the many cultural, political, and economic forces shaping the twenty-first-century Chinese and their implications for businesspeople, marketers, and entrepreneurs - or anyone else who wants to know what makes the Chinese tick. Dismantling common misconceptions, Doctoroff provides the context Westerners need to understand the distinctive worldview that drives Chinese businesses and consumers, including:

- why family and social stability take precedence over individual self-expression and the consequences for education, innovation, and growth;

- their fundamentally different understanding of morality, and why Chinese tolerate human rights abuses, rampant piracy, and endemic government corruption; and

-the long and storied past that still drives decision making at corporate, local, and national levels.


Change is coming fast and furious in China, challenging not only how the Western world sees the Chinese but how they see themselves. From the new generation''s embrace of Christmas to the middle-class fixation with luxury brands; from the exploding senior demographic to what the Internet means for the government''s hold on power, Doctoroff pulls back the curtain to reveal a complex and nuanced picture of a facinating people whose lives are becoming ever more entwined with our own.

Format: Hardcover

Dimensions: 272 pages, 9.56 × 6.53 × 1.02 in

Published: May 22, 2012

Publisher: St. Martin's Press

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 023034030X

ISBN - 13: 9780230340305

Found in: International

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– More About This Product –

What Chinese Want: Culture, Communism and the Modern Chinese Consumer

by Tom Doctoroff

Format: Hardcover

Dimensions: 272 pages, 9.56 × 6.53 × 1.02 in

Published: May 22, 2012

Publisher: St. Martin's Press

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 023034030X

ISBN - 13: 9780230340305

Table of Contents

PART I: PROLOGUE The Objectives of ''What Chinese Want'' Modern Middle Kingdom: Old Pipes, New Palace PART II: CHINESE SOCIETY Family and Country and Me: Chinese Society China''s Middle Class and Communist Party The Long, Long March: Civil Society in China Life in the Shanghai''s Lanes: A Community Affair A Day at the Shanghai Zoo: Families in Action Christmas in China Ritualistic Observation Tycoon Tang Jun''s Lost ''face'': A Chinese Business Tragedy Sex in China: Prudence and Prurience PART III: DOING BUSINESS IN CHINA Always and Anta: Chinese Business The Rise of Chinese Brands: Not Anytime Soon Brand Management in China: Three Golden Rules Chinese ''Recession'' Tactics: How Marketers can Win during a Downturn The Chinese Boardroom: Face and Fear Managing China: Stimulating Creativity in a Sea of Convention Winning Designs: Standing out to fit in Digital China: Liberated Consumers, Constricted Corporations E-Commerce in China: Patriarchic Benevolence Illegal DVDs: Why Piracy is here to Stay The Business of Advertising in China: Incremental Progress, no Breakthrough PART IV: THE NEW, OLD CHINESE CONSUMER Never the Twain shall Meet: Chinese Consumers The New Middle Class: Constants and Variables China''s Lower-tier Cities: Brighter Eyes, Bigger Markets China''s Booming Luxury Market: Goldmine or Landmine? Car Crazy China: Where Anxiety and Egos Collide The Senior Market: Gray Today, Golden Tomorrow Ambivalent Tiger Moms: When in Rome . . . Young Digital Lives The Chinese an
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From the Publisher

Today, most Americans take for granted that China will be the next global superpower. But despite the nation''s growing influence, the average Chinese person is still a mystery - or, at best, a baffling set of seeming contradictions - to Westerners who expect the rising Chinese consumer to resemble themselves. Here, Tom Doctoroff, the guiding force of advertising giant J. Walter Thompson''s (JWT) China operations, marshals his 20 years of experience navigating this fascinating intersection of commerce and culture to explain the mysteries of China. He explores the many cultural, political, and economic forces shaping the twenty-first-century Chinese and their implications for businesspeople, marketers, and entrepreneurs - or anyone else who wants to know what makes the Chinese tick. Dismantling common misconceptions, Doctoroff provides the context Westerners need to understand the distinctive worldview that drives Chinese businesses and consumers, including:

- why family and social stability take precedence over individual self-expression and the consequences for education, innovation, and growth;

- their fundamentally different understanding of morality, and why Chinese tolerate human rights abuses, rampant piracy, and endemic government corruption; and

-the long and storied past that still drives decision making at corporate, local, and national levels.


Change is coming fast and furious in China, challenging not only how the Western world sees the Chinese but how they see themselves. From the new generation''s embrace of Christmas to the middle-class fixation with luxury brands; from the exploding senior demographic to what the Internet means for the government''s hold on power, Doctoroff pulls back the curtain to reveal a complex and nuanced picture of a facinating people whose lives are becoming ever more entwined with our own.

About the Author

Tom Doctoroff is the Northeast Asia Area Director and Greater China CEO for J. Walter Thompson, the author of Billions, and a leading authority on marketing in China and Chinese consumer culture, with more than thirteen years of experience in mainland China. He has appeared regularly on CNBC, NBC, Bloomberg, and National Public Radio and is frequently featured in publications ranging from the Financial Times and Business Week to The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times. He is also a columnist for the China Economic Review and the Chinese magazine Global Entrepreneur. Doctoroff is the recipient of the Magnolia Government Award, the highest honor given by the Shanghai municipal government to expatriates, and was selected to be an official torchbearer for the Beijing 2008 Olympics.

Editorial Reviews

"This is a breakthrough work on the modern Chinese consumer. Rooted in a long and successful career in China, Tom Doctoroff''s book gives a concrete, in-depth, and simple explanation about how this mysterious land really works that will begin to change the world''s biased understanding of a great country." - Pierre Xiao Lu, author of Elite China, professor of marketing at Fudan University in Shanghai, and Founder of China Market Institute Consulting