3 x luxury brands who won this 520

In China, many of the holidays are a craze, whether they’re official days or not. Take the rise of Fukubukuro - now a key date on the retail calendar - and Single’s Day.

A holiday which has surged in popularity over the past few years is 520: the unofficial second Valentine’s Day in China, created by loved-up Chinese millennials.

The term was coined after the common opinion emerged that numbers 520 – pronounced wǔ èr yī in Chinese - sounded similar to ‘I Love You’ (pronounced wǒ ài nǐ).

Originally used as a slang shortcut to say “I Love You” - in a similar way to how we’d say ILY - the day is now a key opportunity for e-commerce brands to drive fame whilst increasing sales.

Here are three brands who won this 'I Love You’ day.

1. Burberry

Digital social commerce was the order of the day, with Burberry leading the conversation with their beautifully curated WeChat Mini programme.

A WeChat Mini Programme is a closed system available exclusively within the ecosystem of WeChat’s app, giving users the option to browse products and campaigns, live chat with customer representatives and pay for items using WeChat Pay.

Image: The Times
Image: The Times

For 520, Burberry launched a Mini Programme campaign which enabled customers to buy gifts and write personal ‘I Love You’ notes to send directly to loved ones, using only their WeChat username.

The recipient would then receive the personalised love note, see their gift and input the address they’d like the item sent to. Making users feel truly special.

Image: Jing Daily
Image: Jing Daily

In an interview with Jing Daily, Vice President of Burberry in China, Josie Zhang said: “Receiving a personal note with an unexpected gift from someone special is such a wonderful treat, and we are delighted to offer this exclusively to our Chinese customers”.

It’s a noticeably more in-tune execution than the Chinese New Year campaign they launched in January which garnered online criticism from Chinese media, social influencers and consumers for missing the tone completely.

2. Harvey Nichols

Instead of the usual trade-focused campaigns that aim to shift product, Harvey Nichols opted to focus instead on developing a creative narrative showing different types of modern love stories.

Image: Harvey Nichols
Image: Harvey Nichols

Stories around young love, old love, new love, family and friendship, and even love for pets were shared across WeChat in a series of short videos.

To amplify the campaign, Harvey Nichols worked with over 20 influencers to spread the message and drive users to WeChat to immerse themselves within the love stories.

Of course, the campaign wasn’t purely about elevating brand awareness. Users were also offered a 10% discount if they bought an item using WeChat Pay.

Image: cbmonile.prnasia.com
Image: cbmonile.prnasia.com

3. Louis Vuitton

This year, Louis Vuitton celebrated 520 by honouring their wide variety of chained bags. Suitably named, “Bags on a chain”, the campaign marked the brand’s debut on the shopping app ‘Little Red Book’ in a bid to demystify the functionality of each bag style.

Image: Little Red Book
Image: Little Red Book

To increase visibility, Louis Vuitton wisely called upon Chinese blogger Tao Liang - better known as Mr. Bags, whose posts consistently turn faithful fans into big spenders - to sign into the app and demonstrate the benefits.

For example, showing how many items the Louis Vuitton New Wave Chain Pochette can hold.

Image: Vogue
Image: Vogue

As well as Mr. Bags, Louis Vuitton also recruited a further batch of influencers to promote the campaign, from Chinese singer Fan Chengcheng to actor Dilraba Dilmurat.

A sure-fire recipe for success, the campaign garnered 23-million page-views and over 600,000 discussions according to Weibo.

We must admit, it’s refreshing to see a brand in the mix who hasn’t predictably chosen to activate using WeChat. Although WeChat is the preferred breeding ground for luxury brands looking to talk directly with affluent and willing to spend consumers, Little Red Book enables brands to talk with more personality.

The tone of the writing generally feels very Gen Z friendly in comparison to the more formal WeChat and Weibo accounts.

SEEN. has been compiled this month between our Senior Account Manager Matt & our PR & Marketing Manager, Emily.

Want to say hello, ask questions or challenge their cultural knowledge? You can drop them a line at hello@lovecreative.com.