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STB reviews Singapore’s national brand identity and switches to global marketing approach

YourSingaporeSingapore Tourism Board is reviewing the citystate’s destination brand ahead of a rollout of a new global campaign.

The idea behind the campaign is to deliver a “powerful, authentic narrative that conveys Singapore’s core identity” as the tourism body looks to take on aggressive rivals and tackle the perception that the citystate is boring and expensive.

“The story of Singapore must be an authentic one that goes beyond tourism and is told by everybody with a stake in our success,” a document outlining the strategy reads.

According to sources, STB has been working closely with Singapore’s Economic Development Board to align tourism with other key reasons to visit the city.

Though details of the campaign have not yet been revealed, the tourism body says the global push will be “focused, extensive and sustained” and have “local market nuances.”

The global approach is a big change from STB’s strategy in recent years, which has been to run different brand platforms for different local markets.

Previous global brand platforms Singapore has used have included ‘Uniquely Singapore’ which six years ago was replaced by ‘Your Singapore’.

STB hired TBWA as its new global creative agency partner in December last year, replacing J. Walter Thompson, and the appointment became effective at the start of this month.

The relationship did not have an easy start when the chief creative officer of TBWA suggested that STB’s recent marketing had lacked vision, prompting an apology from the agency.

STB said today that its tourism industry partners are to play a key role in the campaign, as will data-driven marketing and tighter targeting of its audiences.

STB has defined its key target groups as young families, working millennials, active seniors and business travellers.

Geographically, STB wants to invest further in tier one cities in its top markets of China, Indonesia and India, but also push into tier two cities in these countries.

More attention will also go into attracting visitors from high growth markets such as Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Vietnam and Myanmar, and also long-haul countries such as the US, UK, Germany and France.

Lynette Pang, assistant chief executive of Singapore Tourism Board, said in a press release that tourism bodies could not afford to “stay still” because of rapidly changing consumer behaviour.

“The road ahead is a challenging but exciting one. In this era of change, it is critical that our tourism partners join us in coming up with innovative and bold marketing ideas, and work together to maintain Singapore’s edge as a leading tourism destination,” she said.

The announcement was made today after Singapore’s minister for trade and industry said at a conference that S$700m would be pumped into developing the tourism sector over the next five years.

The minister noted in a speech that while long term strategies were needed to capture growth prospects, short term measures were needed to cope with economic uncertainty.

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