The Singapore Tourism Board (STB) in Japan has selected Ultraman as its ambassador to celebrate 55 years of Singapore-Japan diplomatic relations. Coincidentally, this year also marks the 55th anniversary of the iconic Japanese character. The campaign titled “SingapoReimagine ULTRAMAN” features Ultraman standing gallantly before Marina Bay Sands as he looks over the Merlion statue in the poster. The campaign runs until December 2022, with plans for Ultraman to appear in video content and feature 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, North Asia, Markus Tan, declined to reveal the monetary value of the partnership, he said the video content, key visuals and special merchandise will be rolled out in phases, depending on the COVID-19 situation.
The campaign will also look ahead to a reimagined Singapore and drive anticipation for travel, by leveraging Ultraman’s brand power and audience network in Japan, as well as in other markets where Ultraman is popular, such as Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand, Hong Kong and Taiwan.
According to Tan, there are also plans for more virtual tours this year organised by travel agency JTB. A series of virtual tours was first launched in late-2020, which ended in March this year. A recorded performance by the Singapore Symphony Orchestra will also be streamed for audiences in Japan later in June.
The SingapoReimagine campaign was launched last November to reimagine travel for Singapore and the rest of the world, by sparking conversations, stories and ideas to collectively shape the future of the travel industry. Closer to home in Singapore, STB kickstarted the campaign 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.
It has since been actively promoting this initiative in other countries. In Malaysia, for example, STB premiered the docuseries “Hello from Singapore" in April, looking into how industry players in Singapore are reimagining their businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic. Over 10 episodes, this docuseries tells stories of 10 Singaporeans from various establishments across different industries such as food, retail and entertainment.
Separately, it also tied up with TBWA\Chiat\Day New York to virtually open its doors for Americans to explore the country via livestream taxi tours on Twitch: Singapore by Stream. Each day and night tour allows the streamer to truly experience the landmarks and hidden gems of Singapore – all under the authentic guide of a taxi driver.
Last July, STB also set aside SG$45 million for the marketing initiatives of its SingapoRediscovers campaign. This was said to be the largest campaign introduced in Singapore to drive local demand, and supports local lifestyle and tourism businesses. It also encourages Singaporeans to explore the different sides of the country.
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