Ruder Finn/Ipsos China Luxury Forecast 2012 Reveals Significant Change in Spending Patterns

Luxury shoes, cosmetics, and wines, spirits are winners in slowing, cautious China market

-- Louis Vuitton leads all-European group of top 10 luxury brands in China

-- More Chinese buying luxury products in exclusive brand stores on the Mainland rather than splurging overseas

-- Social media plays more important role in influencing consumers

Jul 26, 2012, 13:01 ET from Ruder Finn Asia

BEIJING, July 26, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The Ruder Finn/Ipsos China Luxury Forecast 2012 reveals that the luxury goods market is still growing. Considerable new consumer spending patterns are emerging despite a cautious China market.

The Ruder Finn/Ipsos China Luxury Forecast was conducted in June and surveyed 1,135 luxury consumers on the mainland who earned more than RMB 100,000 (approximately $15,651 - $31,302) annually. About 69 percent were under the age of 35 reflecting the booming potential of the luxury consumer market in China.

"Chinese consumers buy luxury products mainly to reward themselves or build confidence, as well as to reflect their taste and personality, and will continue to do so this year," said Elan Shou, Managing Director China and Vice President of Ruder Finn Asia. "We are seeing a change in spending patterns, not a drop in the desire for luxury items."

Luxury-brand watches appear to be off the shopping list with 54 percent of respondents saying they plan to spend less on watches over the next 12 months. Hand bags (48 percent of respondents) and jewelry (48 percent) are also not priorities for the coming year. But respondents said they would increase spending on luxury cosmetics (43 percent), high-end shoes (43 percent), and top-brand wines, spirits and cigars (40 percent).

"In the past 12 months the luxury market was going strong but consumers are cautiously planning for the next year because of the economic news they're reading, and this could lead to a relative slowdown. But they will not stop shopping. They will just be buying different luxury items," says Simon Tye, Executive Director of Ipsos.

One aspect of the luxury market that has not changed was the status of established luxury brands in the Chinese mindset. According to the Ruder Finn/Ipsos China Luxury Forecast, Louis Vuitton was ranked No. 1 with a Top of Mind (TOM) awareness of 39 percent (without prompting) and a spontaneous recall (Spon) of 65 percent. The French fashion icon was followed by nine other European big-name brands.






Louis Vuitton
















Christian Dior




















Versace/ Versus



One of the major findings is that China itself has become the go-to destination for buying luxury goods in 2012 replacing Hong Kong and Europe in the 2011 survey. Exclusive brand stores are the most popular point of sale for Chinese consumers to purchase luxury goods.

Additionally, there has been a major uptick in online shopping with an average of 10 percent of luxury goods purchased via the Internet (about 17 percent of luxury cosmetics were bought online). Nearly 80 percent use or intend to use social media to understand more about luxury brands and products.

The full Ruder Finn/Ipsos China Luxury Forecast 2012 will be for sale in mid-August, 2012.

DISCLOSURE: Chanel, Hermes, Armani and Cartier are or have recently been Ruder Finn clients.

Media Contact

Patrick Whiteley, Ruder Finn, Beijing           

Rachel Zabinski, Ruder Finn, U.S.              

(86-10) 6462 7321 ext. 650                     


About Ruder Finn, Inc.

Ruder Finn, Inc. is one of the world's largest independent public relations agencies with dual headquarters in the U.S. and China. Founded in 1948, Ruder Finn serves the global and local communication needs of over 250 corporations, governments and non-profit organizations. The agency is organized around four strategic pillars that reflect its core areas of expertise: Health & Wellness, Corporate & Public Trust, Technology & Innovation, and Consumer Connections. Key offerings include corporate reputation and media counsel, executive thought leadership, financial communications, employee engagement and internal communications, and crisis and issues management. RFI Studios, the agency's full-service digital practice, leads the industry in designing and developing internal collaboration platforms, building conversations and communities around brands, and staying top-of-mind in the world of mobile applications. For more information, visit

About Ruder Finn Asia

Ruder Finn, Inc. is one of the largest independent integrated communication firms in the world, with offices in the United States and Europe, as well as in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Hong Kong, Singapore and New Delhi in Asia. 

In Asia, Health & Wellness includes GE Healthcare, Mead Johnson, Novartis, Pfizer, Roche, Sanofi and Weight Watchers. Corporate & Public Trust includes L'Oreal, Founder Group, Michelin, Boeing, Bosch, Volkswagen, Citic Bank, Singapore EDB, Visa and LANXESS. Life+Style includes luxury brands like Cartier & Piaget from the Richemont Group, Givenchy from the LVMH Group, as well as Hermes, Bang & Olufsen, Lamborghini, Tod's, Breitling and the Jumeirah Group. Global Connectivity includes DHL, Emirates and Hawker Beechcraft. Those four pillars are supported by award-winning divisions such as RFI, focusing on Interactive, Social Media and ePR and INSIGHT which focuses on research and trends, producing the China Luxury Forecast and the CSR Index with Tsinghua University. For more information on Ruder Finn, please visit or, or Chinese website

About Ipsos

Ipsos, The Home of Researchers

Founded in France in 1975, Ipsos is the only independent market research company that is controlled and managed by research professionals. In October 2011 Ipsos completed the acquisition of Synovate. The combination forms the world's third largest market research company. With offices in 84 countries, Ipsos has the resources to conduct research wherever in the world our clients do business. Working both on a global scale and in local markets, our expert teams give our clients the benefit of high value-added business solutions including qualitative, forecasting, modeling, market knowledge and consumer insights. Ipsos professionals deliver insightful expertise across six research specializations: advertising, customer loyalty, marketing, media, public affairs research, and survey management.

Ipsos has been listed on the Paris Stock Exchange since 1999 and generated global revenues of 1.14 billion euro ($1.6 billion U.S.) in 2010.

Visit to learn more about Ipsos' offerings and capabilities

SOURCE Ruder Finn Asia