Purpose: The purpose of this article is to examine how often urban children in mainland China interact with different types of retail shops, how they learn about new products and services, and their attitudes toward different sources of product information.
Design/methodology/approach: A survey of 965 urban children ages six to 13 in four Chinese cities, including Beijing, Guangzhou, Nanjing and Shanghai, was conducted in November 2003 to May 2004. Questionnaires were distributed through eight elementary schools and local researchers were appointed to administer the data collection.
Findings: The three most popular retail shops among urban Chinese children were bookstores/stationery stores, supermarkets, and restaurants and fast food shops. Store visits and consumption varied greatly with age and gender. Generally speaking, urban children perceived personal sources as useful as, and more credible than commercial sources in obtaining information about new products and services. Older children found commercial sources more useful and credible than younger children. Older children also found more information sources useful than younger children.
Research limitations/implications: Three of the four surveyed cities were highly advanced in terms of economical and advertising development when compared with all other Chinese cities.
Practical implications: A very useful advice for marketers and advertisers to select the right type of retail outlets and media to reach urban Chinese children. Internet and children's print media can be good potential media for promotion.
Originality/value: This paper offers insight to design retail and media strategies to disseminate new product information to urban children in China.
Scopus Subject Areas
- Business and International Management
- Consumer behaviour
- Children (age groups)
- Mass media