D&G scandal : a case study for Chinese brands too


Dolce & Gabbana fiasco continues to make waves. On 18 November, the Italian luxury brand managed the feat of gathering in a few seconds – the broadcasting time of its online advertising targeting the Chinese market – clichés perceived as racist, sexist and colonialist. Cancellation of the Shanghai show, public apology of the company’s founders, call for boycott by Chinese Internet users …: the consequences are dire for the brand. Several weeks after the fateful ad’s online broadcasting, articles continue to flow in the international press. In the Chinese media, some articles, such as the three below, encourage Chinese brands to learn from this blunder.

Dolce & Gabbana’s China faux pas shows global brands must tread gently on local sensitivities 

« Some industry watchers said Chinese companies had better watch out for missteps as it was only a matter of time before they get caught up in such controversies overseas as they globalise their operations.

So far, the most high profile globalisation challenge faced by a Chinese firm involves Huawei Technologies, which has been barred from providing 5G telecoms equipment to mobile operators in the US, Australia and New Zealand because of national security concerns. »

Read more on South China Morning Post (in English, above picture)

D & G: this insulting incident offers a warning to Chinese brands: culture has become crucial for internationalization

« In addition to understanding the culture of other countries, it is crucial that businesses shape their own culture. In the global economic context characterized by trade frictions and Sino-US protectionism, Chinese brands urgently need to find the best way to export. Innovation, technology and positioning are undeniably the foundations of a brand’s competitiveness. However, as globalization intensifies, culture has become an important business card for Chinese brands. »

Read more on Economic Observer Online (in Chinese)

Since D & G, think about the thoughtlessness of some Chinese brands that export

« Of course, there are many crossborder ecommerce companies that directly recruit local employees overseas and conduct local operations according to local thinking. This can indeed break down the barriers of linguistic communication and cultural differences. But the downside is that the cost is too high. Not only are SMEs unable to support such expenses, but for large companies too, this represents a consistent budget. »

Read more on Cifnews (in Chinese)