I have to applaud Kaohsiung for doing such a great job with the current “高雄 – 不思议” campaign. The tourism board is promoting Kaohsiung aggressively and intelligently. Using Mayday as the main “hook” (ambassadors), the promotional campaign is successfully attracting an influx of Mayday fans.
Let me analyze some strategies used by Kaohsiung tourism board:
Strategy 1: The promotional video
This video showcases most of Kaohsiung attractions by portraying how each Mayday member is enjoying himself in Kaohsiung.
不思议的发现: Ashin looks like a bohemian artist as he wanders through the “Pier 2 Art Center” (驳二艺术特区) (the place where the DNA exhibition is held).
The second video shows Ashin speaking dialect as he interacts with the elderly Kaohsiung citizens.
Ashin also wanders into Wu Pao Chun Bakery. Wu Pao Chun is a world renowned baker. I think they filmed the video during the 3DNA promotion period as I found a picture of the Kaohsiung mayor, Wu Pao Chun and Ashin holding the 3DNA poster. I love stuffing my face with all kinds of bread and I hope to visit his bakery someday! Check out the never-ending queue in front of the bakery!
Wu Pao Chun Bakery (吴宝春麦方店)
Address: No.19, Siwei 3rd Rd., Lingya Dist., Kaohsiung City 802, Taiwan (高雄市苓雅区四维三路19号)
Opening hours: 10.00 – 21.30
As always, Ashin is very business-savvy. He collaborates with Wu Pao Chun and his Stay Real Cafe launches a special edition pineapple tarts (made by Wu Pao Chun) and coffee (Gabee) package. Even though the box of 8 pineapple tarts and 6 packets of coffee powder is quite costly, the pineapple tarts are rather tasty. More information is available at the Stay Real website.
不思议的浪漫: Masa looks wistful as he cruises down the “Love River” and finds “love”. He happily gallivants along the “Love River” and meets a girl (who appears in Jay Chou’s 你好吗 MTV). The video ends with the italian phase: Questa è la bella vita (This is the Good Life)! Our dear Masa is born in Kaohsiung – a true blue 高雄人. The Love River is just a small river running through Kaohsiung. Sometimes there are people canoeing in the river.
不思议的纯净: Rock, the most muscular man in the band, cycles through Kaohsiung. He rides through the antique trains exhibited in the Takao Railway Museum. I love the wide open space with numerous railway tracks running through the beautiful land covered with soft, green grass. One can also “chop” their notebooks crazily with the many stamps available in the museum. Rock also speeds around the World Games Stadium (where the 2009 World Games, 2009 DNA 55,555 people concert and 2012 Nowhere December concerts were held). The video showcases Kaohsiung’s efficient transportation system that promotes cycling. It is extremely convenient to rent a bicycle and cycle in Kaohsiung. I think you can use their K metro (MRT) card to rent a bicycle from one of the numerous bicycle kiosks around the city.
不思议的热情: Guanyou explores the Meinong Folk Village (美浓民俗村) in his video. It is a traditional Hakka village. I have not been there before but I heard it can be touristy on weekends. Maybe I will visit it when I am in Kaohsiung next time. This video promotes the cultural heritage of Kaohsiung. In his iconic spectacles, Guanyou appears to be quite a convincing cultural ambassador!
不思议的魅力: Monster, our chief, is the main conductor in the video. He composes a Kaohsiung symphony by mixing the different sounds from everyday life in the city. While the other videos only show individual members, Monster’s video has more star power as Rock and Ashin appear in it. Monster brings us through the famous “Dome of Light” in Formosa Boulevard Train Station and various locations in the city. I think I can even spot the famous Liouhe night market.
Strategy 2: The collaboration with KMRT (Kaohsiung Mass Rapid Transit System)
Despite its rather small trains, KMRT is an extremely efficient transportation system. They work very closely with Mayday. Just check out the various promotional items.
a. The KMRT cards
Currently, there are two Mayday series: 2009 DNA version and 2012 Nowhere version. Thank God for true friends that I managed to get the 2012 card and my shamelessness won me the 2009 card.
b. The KMRT trains
Look at the train carriage! I would die to ride in the train carriage that is covered with Mayday goodness or even that train which Mayday took in 2009!
I really have to salute KMRT and its staff. They extended their operating hours purely for Mayday concerts! During the 31 December 2012 concert, the trains ran till 3 a.m.! The courteous staff was so organized that there was no stampede; all Mayday fans could travel in comfort and go back safely! Rock on KMRT!
Strategy 3: Kaohsiung Tourism Board and Mayday
I believe the collaboration between Mayday and Kaohsiung tourism board started in 2009 when Mayday brought their DNA tour to the city. The 5 December 55555 people concert was sensational as it was the first time the World Games Stadium was used as a concert venue. The tourism board expected 55555 fans to flock to Kaohsiung, hence they rolled out an extensive “tourist entrapment” plan.
One of the effective strategies is to make this tourism booklet available in all train stations and tourist information booths. The concept behind this booklist is to encourage the fans to travel around Kaohsiung with Mayday and promote various locations which are linked to each Mayday member.
Just take a look at my conquest. Each Mayday member is the ambassador of one famous landmark in Kaohsiung.
Ashin: World Games Stadium (国家体育场)
Masa: Love River (爱河)
Monster: Cijin Island (旗津)
Guanyou: Dream Mall (梦时代购物中心)
Rock: Lotus Lake (蓮池潭)
There is a tragic story behind my uncompleted Mayday maps. I actually went to all five places during my solo adventure. I even went to the World Games Stadium twice – once for the concert, second solely for the stamp. However, I forgot to bring the booklets on some trips and my booklets were irregularly stamped due to my stupidity.
A beautiful completed Mayday map should look like Bloodbubb1es‘.
Anyway, the point is that most hardcore Mayday fans like me would have gone to all the destinations in their irrational quest to obtain all the five stamps. The promotional campaign is extremely effective as many fans would have spent good tourist’s money during their Mayday journey. However, Kaohsiung also rewards the Mayday fans for all their determination. The Dream Mall kindly gave the concert-goers one free ride on the amazing Hello Kitty ferris wheel.
Strategy 4: Banana and Mayday
I am not too sure if Kaohsiung produces yummy bananas. However, the pictures of Mayday and the Kaohsiung mayor and bananas look very hilarious. The joke is definitely associated with Mayday’s fixation with bananas (the Golden Melody Award 2012 and 憨人 MTV)
The multifaceted tourism campaign launched by Kaohsiung tourism board is really incredible – 不思议! I have great memories of Kaohsiung during all my trips there. I feel like I have returned home whenever I visit Masa’s homeland. The people are so friendly and helpful. The food is mouth-watering. The transportation system is flawless. I can write non-stop about Kaohsiung. So let me just end and scream: 我爱五月天! 我爱高雄!