Ten things to know about the me-generation Chinese

Boy and grandfather playing with soap bubbles, Shanghai 2008
#1 Children born since 1979 have grown as only children, singletons, without brothers or sisters. They take for granted the undivided attention of their parents and grandparents.
Guy wearing red shoes, Hong Kong 2009
#2 The singleton generations are considered to be the “Me”-generations, who put their own success and well-being first.
Before, the Chinese society was built on a collectivist thinking and focusing on We, but the younger generations are more individualists and focus on themselves.

Little Empress wearing a yellow coat, Beijing 2008
#3: These "little Emperors and Empresses" are the apple of the eye of their parents and grand-parents.
Up to 70 % of all income of these four adults is spent on the well-being and education of the only child.

University student doing arts and crafts surrounded by sponge bobs Shanghai 2009
#4: The Me-generation children may be lonely.
They often go away from home to study, and have to take a lot of effort to maintain life-long friendships. Many have a huge collection of plush toys as adults.

Art University Student at home with jeans and shoe collection, Beijing 2009
#5: The middle class singleton children are expected to get a university degree and to succeed in their studies.The studies involve studying and visiting abroad. 

In top universities the atmosphere is highly competitive, and suicide after failure is not unheard of.

Streetlife at night, Beijing 2009
#6: In every me-generation, there are more guys than girls.
This had led to empowerment of the young women and a shortage of bachelorettes.
Nightclubbing girl, Beijing 2009
#7: The singleton daughters get the same undivided attention and investment from their parents as the singleton sons do.
Young middle-class women are educated, speak several languages and have travelled the world.
On the pavement accross the Mao (cat) nightclub, Beijing 2009
#8: Chinese bachelors are having difficulty in finding a wife.
The educated bachelorettes are very demanding, want to have a career and may prefer a foreign husband.
Male beauty pageants, cosmetic surgery, and match-making services thrive.
Guy wearing hot pink "Love's story" T-shirt, Hangzhou 2009
#9: The male ideal has become softer, as the women are more able to provide for themselves than ever before. 

Baby-girl, to be her parents' social security, Wuhan 2005
#10: The children of the singleton parents are facing a 4-2-1- syndrome:
Four grandparents and two parents are all relying on their one and only offspring for social security at old age.

So what? 

- All this has strong implications on consumer culture in China. In order for your brand to succeed in China, you need to have deep understanding of Chinese consumers and their lives.