Chinese Americans growing as spenders: Report

Updated: 2015-02-06 06:05

(China Daily USA)

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Chinese Americans growing as spenders: Report

Gravity Media strategist Larry Moskowitz presents his company’s report on Asian Americans in the United States. Lia Zhu/China Daily 

Working hard day and night. Saving money for their children. That might be the image of Chinese Americans of the past, but not now according to a report that says today's Chinese Americans are more affluent and educated than the general US population, are tech savvy, web centric and like to travel and try new things.

"If you can't reach these people, you are leaving money on the table," Larry Moskowitz of Asian-American advertising agency Gravity Media told marketers in New York on Wednesday.

New York-based Gravity Media, which targets multi-cultural communities, conducted an online and telephone survey last year of 400 Chinese Americans nationwide who came from the Chinese mainland, Hong Kong or Taiwan and who usually spend three to five hours on Chinese language media every week. The agency also used US Census data in its survey.

Currently, at 5.5 percent of the US population, according to census figures, Asian Americans have become the fasted-growing ethnic segment in the country. And among some 40 subgroups of Asian Americans, Chinese are the largest and their high household incomes also make them an even more important consumer group for marketers and many brands, Moskowitz said.

Citing the 2013 US Census, the Gravity report says Chinese Americans' median household income is $68,149 compared to $52,250 of the general population, and Chinese Americans are more educated, with 53.4 percent holding bachelor or higher degrees, while only 29.6 percent of the total population is at or above that academic level.

To reach these people, Moskowitz, who speaks Chinese fluently, advised marketers to adopt challenging media approaches. "Chinese Americans prefer communications in their own language," says the Gravity report, citing US Census figures that 19.5 percent of Chinese Americans speak only English, while in California the rate of those preferring Chinese is higher.

In-language and cultural relevant media are the keys to approach a broader group of these consumers, he said. Moskowitzsaid 81 percent of survey responders view some sort of Chinese TV or movie programs on a regular basis with 37 percent spending more than 10 hours on that every week.

That finding was echoed in a 2013 report by Nielsen, the information and measurement company. "Even those who primarily speak English outside their homes are tuning in to in-language media and consider their cultural heritage as an integral part of their identity," said the Asian American Consumers report.

Chinese American consumers also tend to spend more time on websites for news, social network and shopping. They are tech savvy and early adopters of technology, says Gravity's report, which found that 80 percent of responders spend at least 19 hours on Chinese websites, with WeChat and Youku as the top social network app and online video website.

California and New York are also home to the most Chinese Americans aged at 18 or above, with about 37.2 percent of the total population of Chinese Americans in California and 21.5 percent in New York. Orlando has been seeing an increasing number of Chinese Americans in recent years due to tourism development there, Moskowitz told China Daily, "They (Chinese Americans) kind of follow corporate opportunities."