China Business Symposium 2012
Successful Branding and Channel Management in China
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This one-day symposium was held in the Conference Centre in Penrose, Auckland 1 March 2012. The event was jointly organised by the New Zealand China Contemporary Research Centre and NZCTA for organisations engaged in business in China and academics who wish to test academic research with what actually happens in the market place.
The symposium presented an unique opportunity to update yourself with the latest research on Successful Branding and Channel Management in China and to hear from successful practitioners in China.
Invited keynote speakers:
• Professor Sherriff Luk from the Hong Kong Polytechnic University on Branding in China: the framework and principles
• Glen Murphy, former Managing Director of A C Nielsen (Greater China) on how foreign firms succeed in branding in China?
• Colin Heads, Emborio (Shanghai) Co Ltd on Distribution and Logistics Management in China
• Professor Forrest Yang, Victoria University the Academic keynote on: Channel structure and management in China
Plus supporting speakers from Food and Beverage; ITC; Tourism; Chinese consumers; NZ China Contemporary Research Centre; Academia; NZ Trade and Enterprise; Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade discussed their own experiences, tips, pitfalls and advice PLUS an interactive Panel Discussion and questions after each session.
Please click on the following web link (http://www.chinasymposium.co.nz/) for the specific programme and registration information.
Numerous events by the NZ government and trade associations have taken place to emphasise the importance of China for the New Zealand export-led economy in the past few years, particularly after the signing of the China-New Zealand free trade agreement in 2008. However, what seems lacking is an event that brings together academics and business people who are interested in China to discuss what successes and lessons we have learned in researching and doing business in China. There is abundant knowledge in the academic literature which can be useful for practitioners in tackling the China market. However, academic research is often seen to be abstract and theory driven and difficult to relate to in the real world by practitioners. Despite the success of some New Zealand firms in China, their experiences are often idiographic, case specific, and lack a generalisable framework so to be communicated to and applied by others. A bridge is needed to match academic research with practical business experience.
To meet this objective, the NZ China Trade Association (CTA) and the Contemporary China Research Centre (CCRC) jointly initiated an ‘academic research matched by business practice’ symposium on China for New Zealand organisations engaging in business in China in December 2010. The event gained the generous support of NZTE, Victoria University, AUT and Cathay Pacific. We successfully attracted 77 participants from a wide range of public and business sectors including universities and research institutes, government agencies, trade associations, consulting, investment and design, Food & Beverage, household products, tourism, logistics and airlines, high tech, natural health and skin care, education, farm tech, animal products and equipment manufacturing. The presentations and following panel sessions stimulated deep and insightful discussion on the key issues NZ firms have to address when doing business in China. Despite the fact that it was run for the first time, we amply achieved the symposium’s objective of getting academics and practitioners together and presenting issues and solutions in a complementary and interactive way. During and after the event, we have received some really positive feedback on the organising and content of the event.
Following the success in 2010, we are now planning to organise the second ‘academic research matched by business practice’ symposium on China. Two prevailing themes will be addressed in this symposium: branding and channel management in China. As shown in recent research, many New Zealand companies struggle to make profit and survive in China. One marketing strategy to achieve success in China is to charge premium price for the NZ-origin product or service. However, premium pricing has to be supported by a prestigious brand and effective channel relationships. What are required for NZ firms to build their prestigious brands in China? What are the key principles in accessing and working with local contacts and channel members in China? How can NZ firms deliver the key values of their brands to Chinese customers/consumers with support of channel members in China and equally importantly gain the feedback from customers and consumers via the channels and refine their value propositions and improve their product/service offerings?
The 2nd symposium scheduled on 1 March 2012 addressed these questions. It is our expectation that this event will increase the awareness of China opportunities among New Zealand businesses and, more importantly, improve understanding of the complexity of the China market and facilitate the development of successful strategies and operational plans to tackle the China market.
Read Chris Wilson's (Asia New Zealand Foundation) report , highlighting key comments from presenters on Channel Management at this symposium: