To celebrate the 55th anniversary of Singapore-Japan diplomatic relations, the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) in Japan has appointed Ultraman as its ambassador.
This year also happens to be the 55th anniversary of the iconic Japanese character. In the poster for the “SingapoReimagine ULTRAMAN” campaign, Ultraman stands gallantly in front of Marina Bay Sands, looking over the Merlion statue. The campaign will run until December 2022, with Ultraman set to appear in original films and on special merchandise.
"Ultraman will feature in the 'SingapoReimagine ULTRAMAN' campaign as the Ambassador of Light, to connect the 55th anniversary of Singapore-Japanese relations, with the anniversary of Ultraman’s first appearance on Earth 55 years ago," Tsuburaya Productions, the production house for Ultraman, said in a statement on its website. Alongside the campaign was the launch of the SJ55 logo, featuring the Merlion and Japan's cherry blossoms in origami style.
While STB's regional director for North Asia, Markus Tan, declined to disclose the monetary value of the partnership, he did say that the video content, key visuals, and special merchandise will be released in stages, depending on the COVID-19 situation.
By leveraging Ultraman's brand power and audience network in Japan, as well as other markets where Ultraman is popular, such as Malaysia, Indonesia, the Philippines, Thailand, Hong Kong, and Taiwan, the campaign will also look ahead to a reimagined Singapore and drive travel anticipation.
According to Tan, the Japan Tourism Board is also planning more virtual tours this year. A series of virtual tours was launched in late 2020 and concluded in March of this year. Later in June, a recorded performance by the Singapore Symphony Orchestra will be streamed for Japanese audiences.
Last November, the SingapoReimagine campaign was launched to reimagine travel for Singapore and the rest of the world by sparking conversations, stories, and ideas that will collectively shape the future of the travel industry. Closer to home, STB launched the campaign in Singapore with "Reimagine Travel in Singapore," a series of engagements with passionate members of the local community and tourism partners to co-create ideas and spur the renewal of Singapore tourism.
Since then, it has actively promoted this initiative in other countries. In Malaysia, for example, STB premiered the docuseries "Hello from Singapore" in April, which surveyed how Singapore's industry players are reimagining their businesses in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. This docuseries tells the stories of ten Singaporeans from various establishments in industries such as food, retail, and entertainment over the course of ten episodes.
Separately, it collaborated with TBWAChiatDay New York to virtually open its doors for Americans to explore the country via Twitch: Singapore by Stream livestream taxi tours. Each day and night tour allows the streamer to truly experience Singapore's landmarks and hidden gems – all while being guided by an authentic taxi driver.
STB also set aside SG$45 million in July for marketing initiatives related to its SingapoRediscovers campaign. This is said to be Singapore's largest campaign to drive local demand and support local lifestyle and tourism businesses. It also encourages Singaporeans to explore the country's various aspects.
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