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Hello Kitty and Dear Daniel - Why They Appeal to Such Broad Segments in Asia.

In: Business and Management

Submitted By rloh88
Words 1349
Pages 6
The Happy Meal promotion by McDonalds in Singapore in 2000 where McD’s customers could buy a Hello Kitty or Dear Daniel doll for $2.60 Singapore dollars caused such a frenzy (and a ruckus too) that it has caught the interest of both the media, global marketers and academics alike. In the end, this Hello Kitty McToy promotion increased the interest and sales for McDonalds; but with a different consumer; and not the intended target group - the prepubescent girls and boys!

The reasons for this unexpected and overwhelming appeal for this McToy campaign in Singapore and the rest of Asia can be postulated to the following. They are however divided into two categories – the first covering the Asiatic region in general; and secondly, specifically to the Singapore market only:
A) Across Asia:
i. The Growth, Charge and Impact of the Kawaii Concept:
Kawaii is a key concept that characterizes the modern Japanese culture. Literary translated as “cute” in English or figuratively as “things that are desired”, this culture originated with the 15 to 18 year old girls in Japan. Soon, marketers and advertisers in the fashion, publishing and the cute-little-gadgets industries recognizing the wide potential and appeal of this niche segment began to leverage on it. As this market segment is typified by the characteristic “not how much they spend” but “it’s that they all buy the same things”, hot items (like Hello Kitty) when caught by the wave can easily reach 100% market penetration in weeks!

In short, kawaii became a complementary force in proliferating the Kitty mania. This culture actually grew beyond the original 15-18 year olds and also extended beyond the Japanese shores into and throughout Asia economies. As the kitty mania caught on, Sanrio, the company wisely launched a blitz of the Hello Kitty merchandise covering clothing, stationeries, house wares, ATM and credit…...

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