Hong Kong wet markets are far superior to supermarkets. It takes a bit of extra work to go to a few different places and discover which shop sells what... but then you are a local and you have a local – somewhere you are recognised, somewhere you trust.
However, sometimes you need to grab a few things, but a quick trip to the supermarket ends abruptly, for whatever reason.
Immediately upon entering Market Place by Jasons, I understood the complaints I had been seeing popping up on various social media feeds. That song, once so beloved, now so annoying. On repeat, over and over and over again...
After desperately and unsuccessfully rummaging through my bag looking for earphones, I found myself force-humming Britney Spears, The Beatles – definitely not Billy Joel (sorry, Billy) – anything to distract my mind. I became a sudden speed shopper. I couldn’t focus. I kept looking at but not comprehending my shopping list, and on arriving home, I discovered I had completely missed three things.
At home I cranked up Spotify, hoping to rinse my brain, akin to putting a burn under a running tap. “Tainted Love” (once I ran to yuu, now I run from yuu), “Sweet Dreams” (some of them want to abuse yuu), “Wicked Game” (yuu get the picture). Every song is now about yuu. I found some relief with Blackpink, and I am now gleefully embarrassing my children with my new-found musical trendiness.
What is yuu?
Yuu is a new rewards scheme uniting all the different brands that reside unde Dairy Farm Group and partners Hang Seng Bank and Jardine Restaurant Group.
Yuu covers over 2,000 places to shop and dine in, with local favourites Wellcome, Mannings, 7-Eleven, IKEA, Market Place, KFC, Pizza Hut, PHD, 3hree6ixty, Jasons and Oliver’s all listed as partners.
Seriously? That’s like... everywhere.
Reward schemes are supposed to make a customer more “sticky”, letting us accumulate points until we get something free or receive discounts.
In return, these brands receive valuable data on our shopping habits – both offline (at physical stores) and online – over many different types of purchases and at different places. This is the holy grail of customer data, and you can bet they will be pushing yuu hard early on with more than just torturous earworms – expect great deals and the like.
Will it make a customer more sticky? I will NEVER SIGN UP, EVER, and, whenever possible, will avoid any chain if there is ANY CHANCE of hearing that song again (I may reconsider if all brands apologise to Billy Joel, rescind the song and promise to fix what’s wrong with this picture – or at least do two out of the three).
Photo credit: @Wellcome2HellHK
Who is responsible for this madness?
That would be M&C Saatchi Spencer – 2019 Bronze winner of the Hong Kong Creative Agency of the Year.
Part of international ad agency M&C Saatchi, M&C Saatchi Spencer is helmed by CEO Spencer Wong, and the Hong Kong branch seem to be without its own presence on the web.
I was hoping to find a Twitter handle or Facebook page to share my trauma, and then I wouldn’t feel the need to carry on quite so much in an entire article. Sorry. Can we please start something? #YuuMayBeWrong? #OnlyTheYuuShouldDieYoung?
The last word
On checkout, I was asked if I had signed up to yuu. Of course not!
“This song?” I asked incredulously as I pointed to the ceiling. Bless the clerk – she nodded with smiling eyes. Or perhaps it was a grimace.
“How can you stand it?” Stony-faced, she replied without emotion, “Ten hours.”
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