Our reporter Wang Feng

  In recent years, the concept of "national tide" has emerged. Not only have many traditional Chinese brands leveraged to "innovate", new brands with "national tide" as their selling point have also continued to emerge.

From food and beverages to clothing and cosmetics, from movies and television to cultural and creative surroundings, from traditional culture to modern technology, it seems that "everything can be a national trend" for a while.

  "National Tide" has brought new opportunities and vitality to the development of Chinese brands and the revival of Chinese culture, but blindly following the trend, floating on the surface, imitating plagiarism and other phenomena are not uncommon.

  How to make the "national tide" truly empower Chinese brands and culture, avoid impetuous noise and even cause waste of resources, has become a question of people's thinking.

Public "causes" boost the "national tide" surging

  Once, imported big-name brands were a symbol of quality, and European, American, Japanese, and Korean cultures once led the trend; now, the "national tide" is changing the traditional stereotype, and more fashionable and cutting-edge Chinese brands and culture shine brightly.

  Experts believe that the rise of the "national tide" is not accidental, but has a distinct background of the times. It is caused by China's economic development to a certain stage, the change of people's consumption concept, the increase of cultural self-confidence in the context of the rise of a great power, and the improvement of manufacturing innovation capabilities.

  "The general background is the improvement of China's economic strength, per capita consumption level, and cultural self-confidence. The driving force is the joint action of the government, the media, enterprises and consumers, and the foundation is the improvement of China's technological level. The identity of the world factory for many years has exercised China The industry chain and talents.” said Wu Hong, director of the Clothing Art Committee of the Chinese Artists Association.

  2018 is considered to be the "first year of the national tide".

At that time, Chinese sports brand Li Ning brought Chinese elements shoes and clothing to New York Fashion Week. The Forbidden City lipstick was sold immediately after the launch. Beijing Satellite TV created a series of national tide cultural programs such as "Renewing the Forbidden City" and "I am waiting for you in the Summer Palace"...

  Subsequently, more and more domestic products have integrated new technologies and new trends into the brand culture and made their appearance in a brand new posture. Traditional culture and oriental aesthetics have also used modern industry and scientific and technological power to integrate with diverse cultures, innovate and transform into specific brands. And products shine in various fields in various forms.

  For example, “old brands” such as Pechoin cosmetics, Arctic ocean soda, and sports shoes have returned to the market in a new way; in the mobile phone industry, OPPO and the Forbidden City have jointly launched customized mobile phones with the main color of “Palace Wall Red”; in the automotive field, BYD launched the "Qin, Han, Tang, Song, Yuan" series of cars...

  "We are a Chinese company, so we want to name these cars after the Chinese dynasty. Another detail is that all the buttons on BYD cars use Chinese characters." said Wang Chuanfu, chairman and president of BYD Group.

  The "Baidu 2021 Guochao Pride Search Big Data" report shows that the attention of Guochao has increased by 528% in the past 10 years. In 2021, the attention of domestic brands will reach three times that of foreign brands.

Mobile phones, clothing, automobiles, beauty, food, and home appliances have successively become the six major categories with the fastest growing interest in domestic products.

  Not only domestic products, but also a large number of popular and popular national comics, national dramas, traditional cultural IP, etc. have also achieved a new life. For example, more and more young people are confidently wearing Hanfu and taking to the streets, and Li Ziqi’s popularity on the Internet has become a major A cultural phenomenon.

  The "archaeological blind box" that integrates archaeological excavations into the process of "opening the box", exquisitely made Chinese costumes of various dynasties and film and television dramas, and handicrafts combining traditional elements with modern fashion... At the 17th ICIF in September this year, All kinds of cultural and creative "national tide" products show the charm of traditional Chinese culture.

  Hu Yu, a professor at the Institute of Cultural Creativity of Tsinghua University, believes that "national tide" is not only a wave of domestic products, but also a wave of national power, and even a wave of national luck.

"National Tide" has three very important elements supporting it, one is national culture, one is domestic brand, and the other is youth power.

  The "more confident Gen Z" is an important factor in promoting the "national upsurge".

"This generation of young people’s attitude towards domestic products has slowly completed the transition from rejection to appreciation. Especially after the'Xinjiang cotton' incident, some national brands that supported Xinjiang cotton have lost overseas orders, but have gained domestic consumers’ attention. Widely favored." Said Zheng Yexin, general manager of 361 Degrees Brand Business Management Center.

"Chaos" a lot of hidden worries emerge

  There is no doubt that the "national tide" is hot.

However, many products with "national tide" as their selling point on the market actually have many shortcomings in terms of design, quality, and brand connotation.

In addition, some manufacturers have been enthusiastic, earning quick money, plagiarizing, and concocting crude and shoddy "counterfeit national tide" products.

  Wu Hong pointed out that this is not only detrimental to the development of Chinese brands and Chinese culture, but also brings various problems.

  Putting ethnic labels on yourself, spending money on marketing, taking advantage of major disasters or special events to gain popular opinion... These are the methods used by many "national tide" brand marketing at the moment.

Some brands have even become the "light of national brands" in people's hearts through popular events, but once the heat has passed, they have been thrown away by the market due to issues such as old fashioned design and product quality.

  Wang Yong, chairman of the brand alliance, believes that for brands, "national tide" is a catalyst, but if you only have a catalyst and do not have solid internal strength, this catalyst will not play a role for too long.

  "Now the common people are becoming more and more rational. Brands may be able to harvest a wave of traffic by relying on so-called feelings and publicity, but this is not sustainable. In the final analysis, it is still necessary to provide customers with valuable products and services. The root of the brand cannot be turned the cart before the horse.” Wang Yong said.

  In addition, in order to keep up with the popularity of the "national tide", many merchants just put together the elements of Eastern culture such as cranes, auspicious clouds, Chinese characters and so on. No consideration is given to whether these elements fit with the product culture.

  "These eager'pseudo-national trends' are difficult to guarantee the quality of products." Wu Hong said, not only that, these products lack a deep understanding of traditional culture, leading to the formation of a stereotype that "Chinese traditional culture is equal to traditional patterns". There is also a lack of "tide" echoes with avant-garde fashion, which dilutes or even distorts the original meaning of traditional culture.

  In order to make quick money, some so-called "national trend brands" even went astray, some faked, and some copied original designs of other brands, which greatly harmed the interests of original creators and the healthy development of the industry.

  Take lipsticks in the beauty industry as an example. Search for the keyword "Chinese style lipstick" on Tmall, and there are more than 2,000 related products; on JD.com, more than 10,000 products are displayed, only the "Chinese style lipstick set" The quantity in one column exceeds 5000 pieces.

  Most of these products are extremely similar. Looking at them, they are full of strong "national tide" elements such as cranes, peony, and phoenix. Some products are even difficult to distinguish without looking at the product trademarks or names.

Let "Guo Chao" truly empower Chinese brands

  Experts said that the "national tide" fever is gratifying. It allows people to see the powerful energy of excellent traditional culture in the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation.

But we must get rid of impetuosity, narrow-mindedness, and profiteering psychology, and make products steadily, so that the "national tide" can burst out with lasting vitality.

  In fact, with the help of the general trend of the development of "national tide", many brands have successfully established their own popularity and achieved revenue that was difficult to match in the past.

But to this day, there is still a huge gap between the quality and R&D of many products and the world-class brands.

  Some experts said that the creation of any high-quality brand is not a matter of overnight, only to sink one's heart, continue to absorb the nourishment from the deep meaning of "national", and carry out "tide" innovation in seeking common ground while shelving differences, "national tide" Can really carry forward.

In addition, we must also guard against money worship and impetuosity under the banner of "national tide", and avoid falling into the vicious circle of looking at "money" and resorting to "plagiarism" and "hype" for profit.

  Wang Dan, curator of the Beijing Art Museum, believes that the "national tide" needs to be further explored, not to follow suit.

It is possible to incorporate world cultural elements into the traditional Chinese culture. "Chinese culture is tolerant, and a confident civilization will tolerate, learn from, and absorb various civilizations while maintaining its own national characteristics."

  "We live in a modern society, and traditional culture must also be combined with modern aesthetic needs to have lasting and vigorous vitality." Wu Hong said that the development of "national tide" requires the refinement and sublimation of traditional Chinese culture, and at the same time it needs to be maintained. Open your mind, and you can't work behind closed doors.

  "A truly outstanding brand can break through geographical restrictions and have a more general impact on a global scale." When it comes to the development direction of the "Guo Chao" brand, some experts said.

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