I’m pretty sure I’ve blogged about this but I’m blogging it again.
Many years ago, I was sent to Singapore to cover the opening of a Cartoon Network amusement park. It was Christmas season and despite the crowd, the place was eerily quiet, save for the music coming from the rides and street shows. At this point, it had not dawned on us that that was very weird until another Filipino journalist and I got on the roller coaster.
It was just the two of us shouting our lungs out; the rest of the passengers behaved as if they were in a library.
On another overseas trip with a group of Singaporeans and Indonesians, we got to talk about famous celebrities in the region. While I got to drop names like Charice and Lea Salonga, which garnered enthusiastic nods, they were hardpressed for names from their respective countries. (Until I weakly offered, “Stephanie Sun?” thanks to a few MTV Asia Music Awards I’ve seen on TV. Oh, and Anggun.)
The Department of Tourism earlier launched the tagline for what I think would be a memorable international campaign: It’s More Fun in the Philippines.
|The logo, which features the Philippines islands, is a play on the banig, or handwoven palm.|
It’s so simple and true; I can’t believe we’ve missed using the slogan after all these years. After all, whenever I strike a conversation with strangers on airplanes and they ask me about the Philippines, no matter how long my explanation, it would eventually boil down to the fact we are a fun-loving people. It sure more than makes up for all the problems that we have (but which we need to solve, of course, let me be clear on that).
On a technical point of view (I’m in internal corporate communications), it’s succinct, and as DOT Secretary Mon Jimenez explained, it answers the question, “Why come to the Philippines?” As I wrote in my entry on Pilipinas Kay Ganda, I’m not really a fan of one-adjective slogans because they lack clarity.
Malaysia is ahead of the pack [in terms of tourism arrivals] with what I personally find as the most obnoxious slogan of all—Truly Asia. (What makes an Asian country truly… um, Asian? It reeks of arrogance; I’m surprised Filipinos, who rile over the slightest of things, haven’t filed a complaint at The Hague: “Sinong tinatawag nilang pekeng Asian?!“ [“Who are they calling fake Asians?”])
Although in that post, I did raise the point that it takes more than a slogan to raise our tourism profile. However, the new tagline seems to circuit around infrastructure problems and other third-world issues that we have, i.e., “Stuck in traffic? It’s more fun in the Philippines.”
I will definitely write more entries on why it’s more fun in the Philippines 😀