Japan knows a thing or two about human billboards. And now, from the PR company that brought the world adverts stuck to girls’ thighs on the condition that the girls wear short skirts and knee-high socks, comes a brand new marketing idea: Candy Crush are sponsoring this girl’s fingernails, with a wacky, candy-based design that’s as bold and colourful as the game itself.
- Joan Coello
Mar 12, 2014
We’ve previously peeked into the living spaces of cosplayers and while their props and costumes certainly impressed us, some of their rooms were a little… distracting. Let’s just say, not all cosplayers are as good at organizing their rooms as they are skilled at roleplaying.
“What has cosplaying got to do with organizing your bedroom?” you might ask. Theoretically, they’re two separate issues, but when the world’s largest furniture retailer IKEA steps into the picture, creating effective storage space in a room seems like something any and every cosplayer should be capable of. Check out the makeover of this Singaporean cosplayer’s bedroom!
Law enforcement continues to be a popular career choice in Japan. Outside of the obvious risks involved it’s a stable job compared to the corporate rat race. However, people who are simply interested in job security often aren’t the ideal candidates to become police officers. Incidence of resignation is on the rise in the forces across Japan, with disgruntled men and women alike citing “being tired of chasing people” and “scary” crime scenes as reasons for leaving.
Combine this with the impending mass retirement of the baby boom generation, and police are facing a significant human resources crisis in the near future. So they have recently been looking at new ways to hook new, and more importantly the right kind of, candidates.
If you spend some time walking around the Shibuya, Shinjuku, or Ikebukuro districts of Tokyo, at some point you’re bound to spot a lavishly decorated truck blasting music from its speakers. These “ad trucks” as they’re known in Japanese are just what they sound like - gigantic, mobile billboards with no purpose other than to drive around promoting the latest music and products. While these trucks do raise some legitimate environmental concerns, there’s no denying that this eye-catching (and deafening) marketing strategy is an effective way to grab everyone’s attention. Keep reading after the jump to view some photographic examples of ad trucks in action. You might be surprised by some of the wacky and suggestive things they can get away with!
We all know there ain’t no such thing as a free lunch, but in Japan, you might just be able to get free tour rides, free vegetables, and even free boxers! Some of these services even deliver the free items right to your doorstep without charging a single cent!
Sounds too good to be true. Getting a little skeptical here, aren’t we? Details after the cut!
Typographers and moral crusader beware! A risqué Samsung billboard promoting their Galaxy 3 notepad has been, ahem, erected in four countries, leaving the South Korean company with a potentially embarrassing public relations mess. The offending ad must have been designed by someone who forgot to turn off the autocorrect feature before editing, making for an unintentionally hilarious billboard. Click below to find out what the racy sign says!
- Rachel Tackett
Aug 16, 2013
Imuraya Confectionary is a Japanese sweets company that specializes in the sale of adzuki (sweetened red bean) products. They pride themselves on sticking to traditional Japanese flavors and sticking to their strange marketing strategies just as hard.
Recently, Imuraya made a pair of official Twitter posts cautioning people against the stiffness of their top-selling Adzuki Bar! This frozen slab of bean paste is a summer favorite across Japan, but according to Imuraya’s own assertions, they can crack your teeth!
- Master Blaster
Jul 18, 2013
On 16 July, Asahi Shimbun declared the winner of the 61st Asahi Advertising Award to be the ad seen above. Chosen from 1,200 entries this ad not only perfectly explains the product and how it’s used but also entices the viewer with its finely woven blankets and well painted walls.
If you’ve ever visited a big city in Japan, you’re sure to have seen a bored looking 20-somethings passing out free tissues with colorful advertisements inserted into them. Upon receiving these pocket tissue advertisements, you probably thought, “Hey, cool, free tissues,” and continued on your way. But pocket tissue advertisements have been around in Japan for over 40 years now, and are a surprisingly effective form of advertising. Let’s take a look at some fun facts about this unique marketing strategy in Japan.
- John Stuart Translations
Jan 31, 2013
The Okinawa Convention and Visitors Bureau (OCVB) along with the prefectural government have cancelled their plans to use space on women’s bare thighs for marketing the islands as a graduation trip destination to students outside the prefecture. Citing criticism, the two bodies stated January 24, “Placing temporary tattoo-like stickers on the thighs of young women to advertise Okinawa is not in line with prefecture’s brand image.”
Think back to the last time you saw an advertisement for a bus schedule. Difficult isn’t it? Even on the off chance you have seen one before, it probably wasn’t so attention-grabbing as to stick in your memory.
It’s not like bus schedules need advertising anyway. Either you use one or you don’t, no amount of persuading will likely change that.
Nevertheless, Tsukuba Tekken, a travel and rail association affiliated with Tsukuba University in Japan, has for years been designing quirky advertisements for their on-campus bus schedules.
Displayed in limited locations around the university, these posters have become a local legend both for their mystery and unorthodox content. So sit back and enjoy these advertisements translated into English.
Ads should be placed where the eyes naturally go. Take the exposed thighs of young women in mini skirts, for example, which happen to be the landing point for many a wandering eye in Japan. In theory, if you were to paste an advertisement on such a thigh, there’s a high chance that advertisement would be noticed. If the girl is wearing knee-high socks, even better as it creates a sort of erotic frame around the ad. In fact, we would go so far as to say the space on a girl’s thigh between her mini skirt and socks is the perfect advertising space!
Japan actually has a name for this premium space— zettai ryouiki, or “absolute territory”— and there is actually an advertising service that allows women to rent out their own “absolute territory” to advertisers. It’s called Absolute Territory PR, and the number of women participating in it are increasing by the day.
So what’s the attraction for young women to bare their thighs in the name of advertising? Read More
- Philip Kendall
Sep 23, 2012
Picture the scene- a businessman walks on to the set of reality TV show Dragon’s Den (which, would you believe, originated in Japan as Manē no Tora?). He sets a briefcase down on a black leather stool, adjusts his necktie and, staring the affluent entrepreneurs straight in the eye, confidently proclaims:
“Dragons, I am here today to present to you a marvel of modern technology. The pinnacle of human engineering. Never before has humankind witnessed such a feat of industry. I am about to present to you… a notebook computer thinner than a single one yen coin!”
The dragons look at one-another in awed silence. All five of them lean forward in their seats.
“Thinner than a coin?? That’s incredible!” splutters one of the millionaires, his hungry eyes flashing.
Although it’s often easy to forget, what with all those games to be played and women in skimpy costumes to pretend not to be staring at, Tokyo Game Show, like every other trade show of its kind, is really all about one thing for the companies attending- advertising and self-promotion.
So when the games have been played, the doors have been closed and the booth girls are just lifeless still images on an otaku’s hard-disk, what remains? Why, of course, the freebies! The swag that seems like an amazing idea until you ride the train home with it and realise that, outside of the event setting with every other guy carrying the same junk, you look faintly ridiculous.
And TGS had it by the bucket-load.
But Sega, the house that built Sonic the Hedgehog and dozens of other gaming greats, pulled out all the stops this year, and, proving that size really does matter, absolutely dominated the show. Read More
- Michelle Lynn Dinh
Sep 5, 2012
Would you buy a product that was advertised on a man’s crotch?
A few companies in Japan think you would. Currently on Yahoo Japan’s auction site, a man is offering to ride the Yamanote line, one of Japan’s busiest train routes, decked out in advertisements for an entire day. His unique service has already received 20 bids.
People often ask me why I moved to Japan and I say “to be with people like me – with blonde hair and blue eyes.” Japan is a homogenous country to be sure, but a recent advertisement from clothing chain COMME ÇA ISM boldly challenges this mistaken stereotype that Japan is full of Japanese people.
It’s actually full of white people!
A racy new Japanese ad campaign launched for the 2012 Toyota Auris, or Corolla as it’s known in some markets, has been causing a commotion for boldly challenging convention—and probably not in the way you would think.
Have a look at the commercial below.
- Master Blaster
Aug 19, 2012
I have to admit, I’m the kind of guy who clings to his underwear until it’s little more than two threads attached to a stretched out, useless elastic band. Guys tend to be creatures of habit and would rather put up with worn down shorts than go to the store to buy new ones.
Freepan (short for Free Pants) is a totally new patented service prepared to send up to seven free pairs of underpants every month – with free delivery!
Catch? Yes, there are a couple catches but not as bad as you might imagine.
- 10 things Japan gets horribly wrong1
- The top five places to survive the zombie apocalypse in Japan2
- So, the Dalai Lama walks into a convenience store in rural Japan… 【Photos】3
- 10 incredible tiny houses in Japan: a photo tour4
- Amazing Lego artist spends six months bringing Hatsune Miku into the physical world5
- Watch the Singapore Tourism Board video that was so bad it was pulled from YouTube6
- Scrapped original Dragon Ball designs bordered on plagiarism7
- Cute girls are universal! Japanese netizens rave over a Chinese girl who is “too cute”【Photos】8
- Otaku pro wrestler Tomoyuki Oka makes no apologies for blurring the nerd/jock boundary9
- Live-action Attack on Titan film casts lead role, sets filming location and start date10
- Chinese Photoshop Trolls and the Half-Blood Prisoner of the Deathly Phoenix Goblet (Part 6)1
- Unfortunate Google employee forced to wander alone on eerie abandoned island for Street View photos2
- 10 incredible tiny houses in Japan: a photo tour3
- How photos of food look when taken by a professional photographer vs a guy with an iPhone4
- Ten-year-old illustrator getting national attention for his unique style of portraits5
- See what 13 stuffed toys look like after a wash at the home spa6
- We finally get to meet Goku’s mother — and we think she’s a real cutie!7
- The extreme lengths Samsung must go to make sure your Galaxy phone works perfectly8
- Sad breakfasts the morning after a fight【Photos】9
- 【TBT】China’s Photoshop experts will fix your bad photos, but be careful what you wish for10
- Japanese netizens put reality on hold for a moment, fall in love with new attorney general of Crimea1
- Chinese Photoshop Trolls and the Half-Blood Prisoner of the Deathly Phoenix Goblet (Part 6)2
- Little store managers take over FamilyMart in Taiwan, hilarity and tons of cute in store【Video】3
- Revealed! Japan’s top 10 handsome samurai【Photos】4
- Unfortunate Google employee forced to wander alone on eerie abandoned island for Street View photos5
- Daughter of Osamu Tezuka, God of Manga, discovers his stash of hand-drawn sexy mouse artwork6
- Attack on Titan’s studio head talks sequels, keys to the hit anime’s success7
- 【TBT】China’s Photoshop experts will fix your bad photos, but be careful what you wish for8
- ‘Miss Korea’ ladies in the 1970s looked different, beautiful long before Photoshop existed9
- Admirers express their love for Crimean attorney general in the purest way they can: cute fan art10
- Korean high schools allow “anything goes” yearbook photos, with hilarious results1
- Taiwan’s Gravity Max – Quite possibly the scariest roller coaster in the world2
- Don’t call them fat, call them Marshmallow Girls!3
- Beautiful gym babe impresses Chinese netizens with her incredible fitness!【Pics & GIFs】4
- Japanese netizens put reality on hold for a moment, fall in love with new attorney general of Crimea5
- Picture perfect siblings of 18 years apart melt the hearts of Chinese netizens【Photos】6
- Attack on Titan’s studio head talks sequels, keys to the hit anime’s success7
- Unfortunate Google employee forced to wander alone on eerie abandoned island for Street View photos8
- Chinese Photoshop Trolls and the Half-Blood Prisoner of the Deathly Phoenix Goblet (Part 6)9
- Ghibli’s Hayao Miyazaki says the anime industry’s problem is that it’s full of anime fans10
- Watch the Singapore Tourism Board video that was so bad it was pulled from YouTube
- Scrapped original Dragon Ball designs bordered on plagiarism
- Cute girls are universal! Japanese netizens rave over a Chinese girl who is “too cute”【Photos】
- Otaku pro wrestler Tomoyuki Oka makes no apologies for blurring the nerd/jock boundary
- Live-action Attack on Titan film casts lead role, sets filming location and start date
- Real-life barbie bares real-life face in minimal makeup selfies【Photos】
- Touching commercial pulls off a hat-trick to hit us right in the feels once again
- 10 things Japan gets awesomely right
- Taiwanese student creates incredible art with materials others would throw away【Photos】
- Women, money and time: Behind the scenes with Japan’s “King of Hosts”
- Japanese people most like to drink green tea with their chips, incredibly dull survey finds
- Free double pickles and onions at McDonald’s Japan will help your budget, ruin your breath
- Eight Japanese words we’d love to import into English
- I thought everyone was exaggerating about how great the airport in Seoul was until I actually went there