It’s a tough decision – what would you rather have – a Hello Kitty mini-doll or a special God doll to help my fortune?

It seems that every chain convenience store in Taiwan has its own little give-away mini-dolls that you get if you buy enough things. If you buy at 7-11 then you can collect stamps that will eventually get you Hello Kitty mini-dolls, and today my Chinese teacher pointed out to me that in Family Mart they have a similar interesting offer with various kinds of Chinese/Taoist gods.

Misadventures in Taiwan is a Taiwanese-based vlog/blog I really like. In her recent article she explained a bit about how this whole 7-11 Hello-Kitty gig works :

Here’s what you can choose from:

Taiwan's convenience stores promotion gifts : Hello Kitty or a God?

Think it wouldn’t affect sales much? Here’s an article from 2 years ago about 7-11 really boosting their sales with this one:

This time the benefactor is Taiwan’s 7-Eleven chain, which is offering coin-sized, three-dimensional badges of Hello Kitty in 31 different poses _ on a bike, making a wish, and even riding a shark — to people who spend more than 77 New Taiwan dollars (US$2.5, €2) each visit to the convenience store.

Since the campaign began in early May, sales are 20 percent above their level a year ago, said company spokeswoman Lily Lin.

Now, at the time of writing the articles adds that:

Taking note, rival convenience stores Family Mart and Hi-Life are considering fantasy character campaigns of their own, featuring stalwarts like Snoopy or Doraemon, the blue-and-white Japanese character with a pocket on his stomach, another popular figure in Asia.

Well, it’s not Snoopy and I think some Taiwanese would take offense at calling those “fantasy character”, but here’s what Family Mart finally decided to go with to battle 7-11’s Hello Kitty successful campaign – mini-Gods :

Taiwan's convenience stores promotion gifts : Hello Kitty or a God?

My teacher is pointing at what she refers to as “the local God”, take caring of the household, although there’s one you can take to help you with your love life or for business. Collect stamps when buying above 66NT$, and eventually you’ll get your own little God to help your fortune.

Hmm… I believe a similar promotion scheme will not work very well with western-middleastern religions (unless you’re actually looking for the quickest way to burn down your chain stores).

Tags: convenience store; convenience stores; Family Mart; Hello Kitty; Taiwan;

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My 7-year-old son is crazy about these 7-11 collectibles. I’ve tried to wean him off them but people keep giving him stickers and it seems he’s hooked. I guess it’s fairly harmless but then again these things are just cheap plastic crap that have no function. You can’t play with them: they just clutter up the shelves looking like cheap, plastic collectibles. Rant over!

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