Spark reaches out to Chinese New Zealanders with language and familiarity

With the latest Census revealing Auckland as one of the most culturally diverse cities in the world, with two in five residents born overseas and 30 percent speaking more than one language, Spark’s launched a new campaign to tap into the Chinese New Zealander market.

Featuring staff from its Auckland-based OneWorld call centre as well as its stores, the campaign shares a message about a familiar voice and family.

It’s the result of research that found for this segment, language and familiarity are key drivers when it comes to deciding which businesses to engage with.

It’s part of an ongoing plan to better reach the community which has seen Spark run a dedicated Chinese service programme for more than 10 years and more recently, in April launching a verified WeChat account and in recent months, a Chinese website.

That website is one of a number of platforms, including local Mandarin and Cantonese radio stations, Chinese supermarkets in Auckland, Auckland International Airport, WeChat, Chinese language websites and The Chinese Herald, that are delivering the campaign.

Earlier this year, NZ Marketing spoke to Chinese Herald owner Lili Wang about the importance of Chinese publications, like her own, that cater to a population that is growing and has great purchasing power.

“Although we only have ten percent of the population, we do have a lot of purchasing power in the Chinese community. They can spend a lot of money… and this is why many mainstream [brands are starting]to target the community,” she said.

She pointed out that there are between 130,000 and 170,000 Chinese in New Zealand with permanent residence, but it’s much more if you include students and those on short-term visas—probably around 300,000.

“The number of migrants arriving in New Zealand has increased over the last 20 years, and the paper has really witnessed this,” Wang said. “We did have Chinese arrivals around 75 years ago, but the real growth has only happened over the last two decades. [The appeal of the paper for migrants] is that it is in their own language. All the stories are related to their lives. Especially in the early years, the internet wasn’t that developed, so people became very attached to the paper. It’s not just about the news. It’s a connection to your life.”


•Photographer: Vicki Leopold, Reload & Smoke
•Translation Agency: Straker Translations
•Creative Agency: Colenso BBDO 
•Art Director: Alex Polglase 
•Copywriter: Joel Francis
Media: PHD

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