MultiConnexions’ Media Executive Loan Kien shares her experience as an Australian-Vietnamese about the importance of this festival in Australia.
Autumn Moon Festival, though originating from China, is celebrated in many countries throughout South East Asia including Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Singapore and Vietnam.
The Vietnamese have their own tales and traditions for the festival. The best-known tale is about a man named Cuội who found a banyan tree that could cure the ill. Ever since he had learned of the power of the tree, he started helping wounded animals and sick people that he encountered. Unfortunately, when his wife accidentally urinated on this enchanted tree, it floated up to the moon, dragging Cuội with it. Children parade lanterns in the streets the night of Mid-Autumn Festival to help light the way to earth for him from the moon.
What is special about Vietnamese Autumn Moon Festival customs?
In Vietnam, the Autumn Moon Festival is also known as the “Children’s Festival”. Traditionally, on the night of the full moon, young children would parade around their neighbourhood bearing brightly lit lanterns and singing Autumn Moon songs.
Nowadays, Autumn Moon Festival is an occasion where families gather together to devour on scrumptious Moon Cakes or enjoy a great lion dance performance. For all the fun that it brings, children wait all year for this spectacular festival.
Autumn Moon Celebrations in Australia
The full moon this year falls on Friday, September 13 and Autumn Moon Festival is celebrated throughout Australia. The celebrations this year has kicked off with the Cabramatta Moon Festival which was held on the 8th of September. There were more than 90,000 people who attended the festivities in Cabramatta.
There are many such events which are being organised across the country. I decided to also attend the festival and realised that many of the Australian marketers have now started discovering the on-the-ground opportunities to connect with the Vietnamese/Asian audiences. It pleased me to see this, primarily because the marketers have a ready audience whom they can niche-target on the ground in a cost-effective manner. Brands such as Bupa, Medibank, CBA, Optus, Western Union and a Telstra Partner Store among others were visible in their efforts to connect with this audience.
As a marketing and communication professional, I believe festivals such as Autumn Moon, Lunar New Year and others present excellent opportunities to build relationships, engage with the Asian community and grow one’s market share. Australian marketers are still a long way from discovering the full potential and spending power of the Asian audience. The silver lining however is when we find some of the brands mentioned above coming forward and taking a step to connect with the local Asian community.
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