The New DOT Slogan – My Take

Had an interesting chat with DOT Sec. Mon J. – 32 hours ago.

He heard that I overheard what the new tourism slogan is and wanted to explain why they’re doing what they’re doing.

Agree. The new line is vastly superior to the short-lived, highly pilloried “Pilipinas Kay Ganda” nightmare. Which was, among other things… wallpaper, predictable, boring. Dreamed up by amateurs. Executed by amateurs.

(But, I’m sure a million detractors are waiting in the wings to proclaim that the new battlecry… sucks – even more.)

Fine.

Back to the new slogan: there’s a short form (No. 1 for Fun)… and a full length version (“It’s more fun in the Philippines”).

From the looks of it, the slogan (and its execution) is definitely a 1st cousin – but a harder working one – of the “Wow, Philippines – More Than The Usual…” campaign which also came from the same ad agency that prepared this new dish – BBDO.

It puts the Philippines on a competitive (and fighting) stance and promises a commodity that is solid even with the most laughable infrastructure: F-U-N.

Best part, we get to OWN the word… a prerequisite for memorable advertising (i.e. Volvo = safety; El Al = hijack-proof; Datu Puti = asim; Rexona = long-lasting; Veto = B.O.)… and for compelling, bahala-na-si-batman social media experimentation.

The Secretary was going on and on about the logo – but the words just went from my right ear to the left. I don’t think an earthshaking logo (even if designed by Malang or Modesto or George Lois) has enough power to make a cynical, brainwashed-to-expect-the-worst tourist come to the Philippines.

I have attempted to engineer and construct the campaign based on our conversation. Sort of fantasizing what I’d do if I were the Creative Director tasked with translating the slogan into communications materials.

So here goes.

My personal interpretation of the campaign.

Unsolicited. Unfiltered. Unashamed.

Deal with it: we will never, ever have the huge tourism promotions budgets of the Malaysias and Thailands of the world.

But though we can’t outspend them… we can certainly outsmart them.

Pinoy ata tayo!

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20 thoughts on “The New DOT Slogan – My Take”

  1. The slogan will require a lot more visuals to drive home the point in a positive way.
    Huge challenge for all the creative Pinoy minds.

  2. Tell me again, what’s wrong with WOW! Philippines!….
    Even “I Love NY” is being recycled and copied – EVERYWHERE!
    #1 for fun is an open invitation to many wisecracks, and as Manolo states, it will need much more work visually with this slogan to bring tourists here.
    I think you can outsmart these other destinations with a limited budget, but don’t fall victim to outsmarting yourselves…
    Just sayin’….

    1. WOW Phillippines, as determined by an international market study, does not resonate with certain target markets because the word “WOW” simply doesn’t exist even in their kind of English … that’s one major reason. On the other hand, I LOVE NY is more universal.

    2. What’s wrong with this one? Why not just try it on for size and see if you like where it takes you (or takes us for that matter)?

      Just sayin’…

  3. The taglines don’t do anything for me at all. And, the logo looks spooky, weird too.
    I agree with Stephen’s take on WOW! Philippines. No shame in re-using something that works. WOW is wow in any language, place or people, I believe.
    Finally, the campaign will only work, I believe, with the visuals you envision which will cost big bucks. But I could be wrong.
    For the meantime I will try to be optimistic…

    1. best to voice out your sentiment, gigi… cause they make sense.
      let’s see how they execute the line…

  4. that’s the sad part of being a filipino. we have much of opinions. all are intelligent. none is satisfied. we should not dwell much on the logo. although visuals would have to play a big part. its a matter of positioning the country in right tourism strategy. selling what the country actually give. FUN! i am positive about this campaign. its just a matter of helping in your ways to make it work. actually, more than just places. we are known of our best values. thats the easiest selling part. like us Filipinos here in U.A.E. our foreign colleagues upon hearing where we are from, are hoping to visit our country. but guess what? more than the excitement to places is also their bragging of the kindness of FILIPINOS that they say are BEAUTIFUL. BEAUTIFUL COUNTRY. BEAUTIFUL PEOPLE.

    1. you’re so right. apparently, it’s very hard for pinoys to just accept anything that comes their way. but maybe, there’s also some good in this.

  5. You’re personal interpretation makes it more interesting, I hope that they (DOT) will execute it just like that. Kudos to DOT and to all people who believe in the beauty of our country! Life is indeed more fun in the Philippines! 😀

  6. If the slogan has really been decided, everyone should now focus on how to support it. This is the best opportunity for all Pinoys to pull together.

  7. One can use all the gimmick of WOW, FUN, etc. to attract tourists but if fundamentals like infrastructure, airport personal facilities, environmental scenes like tricycle-infested streets, are antiquated, political bickering an everyday fare in the news, then all that money on promotions is wasted. I am looking at this from the eye of an imaginary would-be tourist. I would wish I were wrong, though.

  8. They actually did. If you go to their website, it looks like that’s what they used, unless that’s not really their website and someone’s been wise about building up that domain. It goes “COMMUTING. It’s more fun in the Philippines” with a picture of a jetty or raft in El Nido’s Big Lagoon. But more than being positive, we all need to work on this. Word of mouth is better than any advertising material. 🙂

  9. I’m an American. I’ve been to the Philippines 6 times since 2005 and have decided I want to live out my days here. While I have made trips to several of your “tourist” spots, I must let you know that the only campaign that worked for me was WOW (I don’t know who it is that doesn’t understand the word). I will admit though, that no ad campaign enticed me to come here, as my partner for the past 8 years is a Filipina who I’ve known for nearly 30 years. Yes, I find the people and the country beautiful (and I dare anyone to find a single offensive photo in my collection of images I’ve captured over the years). And I have watched over these years the growth as evidenced in the ever changing landscape of added vehicles and high rise buildings. But I dare say that I also overlook a lot of what a foreigner would be exposed to coming here – starting with what would be seen upon arrival at the airport, the cleanliness, the congested roadways (first impressions – I won’t include politics because it’s too touchy a subject and we have our own issues back in the U.S.). I’m open to adapting to the culture of my new home, but I also get annoyed when I have to justify to other Americans (including some Filipinos living in America) my life changing decision in coming here. Positive press is what’s needed, and only a promotional campaign about everything that’s GOOD and BEAUTIFUL and FUN will change minds of the foreign tourists that haven’t yet been convinced that the Philippines is the place to come to and say WOW for all the right reasons…

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