Is winning in China only about “the lowest of the low” or the “newest of the new”?
In my experience, the answer is a definite NO.
Having the “lowest of low” prices or the “newest of new” products may work. But so does just about ANYTHING that gives you a defendable position.
You can have many. You can make them an integral part of your business. Your brand’s DNA can be a genuine FORTRESS of competitive advantages.
Many brands have unstoppable supply chains with an exceptional variety of trendy designs at accessible prices (e.g. IKEA in home goods or Uniqlo in “faster” fashion.)
I just talked with a super successful US fashion retailer stocking 800 brands and more than 500,000 SKUs that change DAILY!
…who can compete with THAT?
Others make quality, scarcity, accessibility and exclusivity their stock-in-trade.
This works WONDERS in China (e.g. Rolex “green” label, or Dainese in high performance racing gear).
Still others own the commodity itself (e.g. Australian cattle). It really doesn’t matter how you do it. The bottom line is that you need to get it done.
Because the rewards for those that hit their stride are big. And their success has nothing to do with being cheap or new (or both.)