Here in North America, finding a KFC restaurant seems like a treasure hunt. But if you go to China, there are more KFCs than the famous golden arches. When I first came to Canada from China, it was, ironically, somewhat of a cultural shock at the lack of KFC restaurants here. I mean, I was expecting the food here would be even better than China! How disappointing 🙁 So what made KFC more popular than McDonalds in China? Infobarrel published an article on KFC’s marketing success and I agree very much with its points.
KFC adapted to its local market and tailored its menu to the Chinese consumers by offering more than just the famous Kentucky fried chicken. Their menu items are capable of luring Chinese consumers to eat at KFC for breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea/snack, dinner, and late-night snack. And this is not an exaggeration. Here are a small food feast for your eyes. Remember theses are in addition to the regular KFC burgers, chicken wings/drumsticks, popcorn chicken, and side dishes.
Not only do their food items specifically target the Chinese market, they are also targeting an older audience, as mentioned in the article. Fast foods are not only for children, but for adults as well. Don’t the food options look healthier than just a normal burger meal as well? We can see that KFC in China is targeting those with a busy lifestyle who have no time to cook but still wants to enjoy a healthy, home style meal.
Targeting and Positioning:
Through their products, we can see that KFC uses differentiated targeting strategy to target both children and adults. Unlike the KFC’s in North America, however, KFC is everywhere in China as Starbucks is everywhere in Seattle. It’s so conveniently located, it makes it possible for you to enjoy breakfast, lunch, and dinner at KFC.
Different from McDonalds, KFC in China positions itself as the fast food restaurant that not only offers delicious famous Kentucky chicken and burgers, but also healthy home style Chinese meals that makes consumers feel right at home.
From these, it’s evident that KFC’s successful adaptation to the Chinese culture is the main driving force behind its marketing success in China.