STB awards SG$1.3m to 7 firms, including VICE and Carousell for marketing proposals

The Singapore Tourism Board (STB) has awarded seven businesses up to SG$1.3 million for marketing proposals under the second edition of the Marketing Innovation Programme (MIP). These businesses are Vice Media Asia Pacific, Carousell, Savour Events, Invade Industry, Euro-Asia Holidays, Cocoba and Botani Spirits.

According to STB, the seven proposals, which came from both tourism and non-tourism businesses, stood out for its business ideas as well as for introducing a new dimension to storytelling about Singapore, which is a strategic thrust under STB’s Marketing Strategy: Of Stories, Fans and Channels.

The campaigns tell stories of Singapore’s culture, heritage and food, which are closely aligned to STB’s Passion Made Possible brand, and target audiences from various Passion Tribes. STB said in a media release that the campaigns were selected based on criteria such as innovativeness, the potential to drive tourism outcomes and feasibility, by a judging panel comprising STB representatives and industry experts.

In addition to that, the campaigns were also selected for its ability to creatively convey Singapore’s authenticity and character, in innovative ways that go beyond the conventional definitions of tourism. Vice Media proposed a "The VICE Insider Guide to Singapore” and the VICE ASIA Young Creators Summit campaign aimed at getting youth around Asia Pacific to visit and discover the unexplored parts of Singapore.

The campaign also comes with three key initiatives such as an online video and editorial series to capture experiential and immersive content that showcases a different side of Singapore, a summit event held in Singapore to gather young and creative individuals across Asia Pacific to create compelling content, a platform to exchange insights and engage with local content creators and KOLs.

In addition, after the summit, international participants will also produce content to showcase "made in Singapore" products and experiences available in their respective countries. Audiences will also have an opportunity to uncover hidden gems within Singapore’s culture, through its food, music, art scenes and more – through the lens of the youth.

Meanwhile, eCommerce company Carousell's proposed campaign planned to showcase Singapore as a destination through the eyes of a visitor who meets new Singaporeans friends that share similar interests. The campaign titled “Embark on Your Great Singapore Treasure Trail” seeks to invite Indonesian users to experience Singapore by planning their own ‘treasure trail’ itinerary, using the Carousell app, and for them to further discover Singapore by meeting and interacting with fellow Carousell users from Singapore, who share their passions and interests.

“Carousell is very much a part of Singaporean life as the place for buying and selling. We wanted to showcase our country's attributes as a destination through the lens of the Carousell community. We're not just a marketplace, we are a platform for Singaporeans to share their interests, passion and stories with visitors,” said JJ Chai, senior vice-president, business in regional marketing, Carousell.

For the 2018 run of MIP, STB received a total of 66 proposals from applicants across a range of industries, including food and beverage, eCommerce and tourism. This was an increase of 50% from 2017, which saw 44 proposals. Each marketing campaign will receive an award of up to 50% of qualifying marketing costs, up to SG$300,000 (excluding GST). These qualifying costs include creative production of assets and collaterals, marketing-related costs for publicity events and activation, talent engagement, media buys and distribution.

Jacqueline Ng, director, marketing partnerships and planning, Singapore Tourism Board said through the MIP, STB aims to support more of such inspired marketing ideas in the future as it looks to tell the Singapore story in "bold, agile and creative" ways.

"It is gratifying to receive even more MIP applications than last year, especially when a good number of them were innovative and potentially impactful. I am heartened that these businesses are passionate about telling a good story in innovative ways and creating opportunities for locals and tourists to interact with our unique culture and heritage," she added.

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