Based on Chinese folklore about the forbidden love between cow herder Niu Lang and weaver girl Zhi Nu, Chinese Valentine’s Day – or Qixi as it is better known as – has long been identified by luxury labels in China as a key marketing opportunity. From special, limited edition releases to collaborations with celebrities, brands have by and large jumped on the Qixi bandwagon.
Efforts to reach consumers during this festival have grown increasingly sophisticated over the years. Given the fast-paced digital landscape in China and short attention spans of young shoppers today, brands are getting creative and looking beyond simple digital campaigns to engage customers and venturing into the realm of gamification.
While it is by no means a new trend in the industry, this year’s Qixi offerings by brands appear to be integrating game elements in a more meaningful manner. In addition, they are paired with other initiatives to create a comprehensive 360 marketing campaign.
While it has always had a strong presence on WeChat, Italian label Bottega Veneta has never built an entire digital campaign around the Qixi festival before – until now. This year, the brand put together a holistic marketing initiative on the platform that starts off with a campaign video then jumps into a mini game that supports both single or two-player modes.
While the single player mode manifests like any campaign would on a phone, the two-player option sees it played out across two phone screens that are placed side by side. Users activate this mode by inviting a friend via WeChat before starting the experience. In game, players are prompted to tap on animated white paper hearts in quick succession to turn them red. Upon completion of the mini game, users have the option of purchasing Bottega Veneta’s exclusive Qixi collection through the brand’s Mini Program, or share the campaign with friends.
Image credit: MCM
A hot favourite with the younger crowd for its edgy street aesthetic, MCM developed an engaging mini activity for its followers on the occasion of Qixi. Moving away from a pure game concept, the brand presented a creative music mixer as part of its digital campaign on WeChat.
In line with its Cassette collection, users are first tasked with selecting a tune (out of 10 available options) of their choice. After which, they are prompted to record a voice message that would be mixed with the previously selected melody to form a unique music track. Users are able to share this track with friends, or request for it to be downloaded into a MCM Cassette USB that they can then pick up from selected boutiques in China by appointment.
Image credit: Dolce & Gabbana
Dolce & Gabbana taps into everyone’s inner stylist with its Qixi campaign on WeChat. Players can opt to dress either its brand ambassadors Chinese singer and actor Wang Junkai or Chinese actress Dili Reba in this mini game.
Players are tasked with picking an item to match the selected ambassador’s Qixi look from a few accessories laid out in a slider. While it may seem like a run-of-the-mill game at first glance, there is actually an enticing incentive at the end of it all. If users successfully pick the ambassador’s real-life choice, they are entered into a lottery to win a mini D&G; Devotion bag. Unsuccessful attempts will simply see the chosen product’s details displayed onscreen. Users are also able to download exclusive D&G; Qixi stickers for use in future WeChat messages after completing the game.
The name of the game is love and Burberry is written all over it. For its Qixi WeChat campaign, the British fashion house prompts users to take a love-themed quiz that would help determine their role in a relationship and the desired qualities for their ideal partner. Readers are offered a short questionnaire that covers everything from weekend hangout preferences and favourite film genres to socialising habits.
After the quiz is completed, users will be presented with an analysis of their answers. They may also choose to send the quiz to a loved one (or potential love interest) and invite them to take it as well. A compatibility result is then generated based on the two parties’ answers. Burberry’s latest exclusive Qixi bags can be purchased through a Mini Program within this WeChat experience as well.