Chinese consumers are once again keen for unique cultural experiences. As Farfetch demonstrates in Shanghai, small-scale, highly targeted pop-up events are a smart way to engage audiences in an economic way.
What Happened: All eyes were on Wendy Yu, the millennial fashion investor, at a recent event at the luxury hotel Middle House in central Shanghai. The show brought together hundreds of well-heeled guests from the city’s fashion community at e-commerce platform Farfetch’s first-ever community gallery.
With China effectively containing the pandemic, Farfetch is working with Swire Properties to encourage people to venture out again. Since July, the 13-year-old luxury e-commerce platform has focused on elevating different voices from across the fashion world to its Chinese consumers by becoming “the curator of curators,” as Alexis Bonhomme, the vice president of Farfetch Greater China told Jing Daily. Thus far, every curator has curated their own gallery at the Swire-owned Middle House’s lobby with clothes and accessories sourced from the luxury e-tailer.
The final curation will be on show until September 15, but Farfetch parties will continue to pop up across the rest of Asia Pacific well into next year. “The concept of ‘People, Place, Style’ would work very well in other markets, too,” Bonhomme added, “we see a lot of interest from regions like Japan, Korea, and Taiwan”. Similar events will take place in Beijing during Q3, Chengdu in Q4 of 2020, and Hong Kong in Q1 of 2021.
Why it Matters: Having endured months of relative isolation and caution, Chinese consumers now want physical connections and experiences. The successes of Louis Vuitton’s Shanghai show and Prada Mode’s recent cultural exhibition proved as much. Farfetch is responding to this need by offering unique opportunities for VIP customers, such as branded afternoon tea sets and fashion masterclasses.
The online-to-offline (O2O) collaboration between e-tailer Farfetch and developer Swire Properties, which also owns luxury malls Taikoo Li and Taikoo Hui, is smart given the consumer base overlap. Farfetch has also worked with brand partners at a non-disclosed amount, which ensures that those brands’ products will have both physical and online exposure.