January 7, 2008

Incredible, Uniquely, Sparkling, Bloody Asia

Over the past few weeks, Milady and I have been discussing some of the regional tourism campaigns. The problem, IMO, is that several of these campaigns have rather simple and, thus, boring slogans. The three primary offenders are Incredible India, Korea Sparkling (which is normally said as if there’s a comma between "Korea" and "Sparkling"), and the local slogan, Uniquely Singapore. It’s not that the advertising campaigns are done badly; in fact, all three campaigns are quite professional with decent television commercials. It’s just that the slogans are not terribly interesting.

Two slogans that I find a little better are Malaysia, Truly Asia and Australia’s So Where the Bloody Hell Are You?, which, apparently, had generated some controversy in the UK and Canada; in the UK because of the word "bloody," and in Canada due to the "unbranded alcohol consumption" at the beginning of one of the commercials (and also for the use of the word "hell"). Singapore avoided the problem by having the slogan advertised here as "So where are you?"

There are a couple of countries that don’t advertise regionally, which is a little surprising, namely Indonesia, the Philippines, and Hong Kong. The most recent entrant in the tourism sweepstakes is Vietnam, the Hidden Charm, which, unfortunately, seems to have followed the lead of India, Korea and Singapore with a simplistic slogan.

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