The most chosen FMCG brand in China
Shopper behaviour has been shaken up by lockdowns and new consumer concerns around health and the environment with a significant impact on the fortunes of FMCG brands across Asia, according to Kantar Worldpanel’s 2021 Asia Brand Footprint Report .
In 2020, local brands continued to lead China’s Top 10 most chosen brands list. Yili remained in the top spot, reaching the most households, and has been chosen the most times per household for the sixth consecutive year. The concept of “a cup of milk every day will give you a strong body” is deeply rooted in the Chinese consumer’s mindset while, more recently, advice from experts on how drinking milk and eating eggs can improve your immune system to help defend against coronavirus mean that dairy categories are now consumed by most households on a daily basis. This has enabled Yili and Mengniu to attract more than 1 billion consumer reach points each. Haday and Shuanghui have witnessed the fastest growth in consumer reach points among the top 10 brands, driven by rising demand for their products as well as their strategy of penetrating lower tier markets in China.
Top 10 most chosen FMCG brands in China
Source: 2021 Asia BrandFootprint Brands on the rise Increased penetration has been a major driver for the fastest growing brands, with many seeing a double-digital increase in consumer reach points in 2020. More in-home cooking occasions led to rapid growth for leading cooking sauce brands Chu Bang and Haday. Jinluo and Shuanghui have seen increased demand for sausages, which provide a convenient in-home protein meal. Self-indulgent snacking occasions at home also saw a rise, which benefited the carbonated soft drinks and savoury snacks categories, and brands such as Coca-Cola, Pepsi and Lay’s. The eighth fastest-growing brand Panpan has entered the China Top 50 for the first time, with an 8% growth in consumer reach points.
Top 10 fast growing FMCG brands in China?Based on top 50 total FMCG brands?
Source: 2021 Asia Brand Footprint
Jason Yu, Managing Director of Kantar Worldpanel Greater China commented: “The pandemic brought unprecedented disruptions and opportunities to FMCG players. Finding more shoppers remains key to growth. True winners are those who are brave to embrace the ‘new normal’ and able to tap into new consumer demands and innovate to create newgrowth levers. ”
The report also pointed out that the unique circumstances of the pandemic accelerated four key trends:
An increased focus fromphysical hygiene to inner health and wellness. People are taking a more holistic view of wellness. Prevention, protection and function become more important, and they are also paying attention to emotional wellbeing. Health supplements are booming as consumers are willing to spend on products that will boost their immune systems. FMCG brands have embraced this trend by targeting communications towards specific concerns, reassuring shoppers, and developing innovative products that meet new needs.
Behaviours differ by countryand category therefore do not average Asian.As we predicted last year, some consumers shifted spend to value brands, while others moved to the premium end of the market. Not everyone was willing to give up luxury during lockdown, and people also bought treats when they could not go out. FMCG brands excelled at showing consumers they do not need to compromise, by creating great “moments” and generous promotions to encourage trading up.
Stay home economy will continue to remain important. Consumers’ desire to live better during this period of lockdowns has boosted in-home categories. For example, consumers prepared more exquisite meals in their homes or mimicked outdoor experience at home. For example, personal care brands that launched ‘home spa’ products that enabled people to give themselves that moment of relaxation and self-care. This has also given rise to consumers becoming more environmentally friendly in their product selection.
Ecommerce with continuous potential for growth. Millions more consumers have turned to ecommerce as a regular shopping channel. Users have increased inquality as well as quantity, with a rise in ‘middle aged’ shoppers who have huge spending power. Brands are using digital platforms to transform the way they sell, with livestreaming video proving highly effective as both a sales conversion point and a brand communication point. Many have introduced delivery services, to ensure they retain existing shoppers and maintain loyalty.
Marcy Kou, Managing Director, Worldpanel Asia at Kantar Worldpanel, said: “ 2020 was a challenging year for companies to navigate, but FMCG brands across Asia have remained consistent and responsive to consumer trends. The events of COVID-19 turned the previously slow growth of FMCG brands on its head, leading to more innovations required of brands to maintain their growth in 2020. With penetration being the crucial driver of brand growth, 86% of growing brands saw an increase in the number of shoppers choosing them.”