Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Beijing Bans Luxury Ads Over Wealth Gap Worries

An advertising billboard outside a DSquared store (an Italian high-end fashion label store) in Sanlitun North Village, a new centre of luxury brands in Central Beijing.

Nothing like a billboard in a high traffic area to shout out in your audience's face. It is good news and bad news for outdoor media owners. But now we all know - Out of Home media works! And bigger the better.

Rest of the news report here - sourced from: The Straits Times (Tuesday, March 22nd 2011):
Beijing: China’s capital has banned outdoor advertising that promotes hedonistic or high-end life styles as the government to ease public concerns about the country’s widening wealth gap.

The Beijing Administration for Industry and Commerce said in a recent statement that businesses were given an April 15 deadline to rectify such ads, along with any that excessively promote “foreign” things.

It gave no details on which “foreign” things were considered objectionable. Such promotions help create a politically “unhealthy” climate, it said. Violators could face fines of up to 30,000 yuan (S$5,800), the state-run China Daily said yesterday.

Newly forbidden words include “supreme”, “royal”, “luxury” or “high class”, which are widely used in Chinese promotions for houses, vehicles and wines, it said.

The authorities in the south-western mega-city of Chongqing last week issued similar rules that barred real estate advertisements from using phrases including “best”, “unique” or “irreplaceable”.

Chinese officials are struggling to cool criticisms over a widening income gap at a time when high inflation has put economic pressure on the country’s hundreds of millions of low-income farmers and industrial workers.

Premier Wen Jiabao said earlier this month that “resolving unfair income distribution” would be a major objective under a 2011-2015 state economic plan.

Brokerage firm CLSA Asia-Pacific Markets predicted in January that China would become the world’s largest luxury goods market by 2020; accounting for 44 per cent of worldwide sales and bigger than the entire global market is now.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Incredible India in Billboards also known as Hoardings

Some online research for an earlier blog post had given me an impression that Out of Home advertising in India is a bit like this:

However, after some field research during a whirlwind trip in India, comprising of New Delhi and Bangalore, I really like some of the billboards (aka Hoardings as they are known in India) spotted. Here's my take of Incredible India from the view of Out of Home media.

(1) These are airport advertising by JCD in the Bangalore Airport. Seat advertising featuring the recent Cricket World Cup held in India. Simple, clean and effective media use. 

(2) Nike- I Bleed Blue. Precisely because it was the Cricket World Cup when I was there, every other advertisement was in Blue or the Tri-Colours. However, the graphic and tagline "I Bleed Blue" from the Nike ads created a very emotive feel from me.

(3) Many public convenience facilities in Delhi, such as public toliets and drinking posts, are being built and maintained by outdoor media owners for the rights to place billboards on these facilities. I think this is a great win-win situation especially since India's overall public infrastructure has much room for improvements.

(4) Here, is a typical bus shelter in Bangalore taken in the day-time. They are Build Transfer and Operate (BTO) project with a short 3 year operational contract. This is undertaken by a local media owner. Not exactly the common standards for bus shelter design, but not exactly incredible... yet.

(5) Here, the bus shelter taken at night-time. This bus shelter is more like a couple of giant lightboxes grouped together! Not user friendly at all since it was very glaring to be inside one of these bus shelters and the heat generated by the lamps made it very uncomfortable for the users.   

***   Not relating to Out of Home Media.... ***

(6) The Taj Mahal! Truly Incredible India, a very magnificent part of India!

However the journey to Agra to see this wonderful, beautiful monument was unforgettable (and unrepeatable) too, especially since everyone raved about how good the roads were. Maybe it is a joke that I did not catch then. But the journey took almost 6 instead of 4 hours drive and the roads were clogged with traffic PLUS hundreds of tractors, over-loaded trucks, camels, cows, horses, donkeys and even elephants.
(7) Spotted on the roads. Incredible India. ;)

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Non-Advertisement: Donation to the Japanese Red Cross for Emergency Relief

In our own little way, TPM will be contributing the the Japanese Red Cross - Earthquake Donation with a company and personal donation. The personal donation is our staff's own initiative and I am grateful to work with such a bunch of caring people. We also have several Japanese clients and our thoughts and prayers go to them.

We will be donating via bank transfer directly to the Red Cross and we hope these funds will reach to the local level soonest and with the least hassles.

TPM would like to do more, please let us know how.

Life's short. Do good.

Update: TPM is donating S$4,000 as a grand total from both company and team. Thanks guys!