Widespread support has poured in for the country’s newly released tourism campaign, Love the Philippines.
News5 reported that the social listening tool Sprinklr recorded 59.1 million approval emotions from the public and a combined 28.9 million smile, happy, and appreciation emotions on the Love the Philippines campaign in the last 24 hours at 4:50PM on Thursday (Jun 29) .
Former Senator and Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Richard GORDON, the mastermind behind the successful “WOW PHILIPPINES” campaign, showed his support, saying that he found the developed campaign “instantly appealing”.
In a report, he said that Love The Philippines is “catchy and easy to recall”, adding that the phrase “also gives a double-meaning call to Filipinos to love the country more than its physical which are wonders but also the good qualities of mankind. He said it is also a statement of appreciation for the Philippines experienced by tourists.
United States Ambassador to the Philippines Marykay L. Carlson also expressed her support for Love The Philippines through a tweet, showing her personal love for the Philippines since she came here as a diplomat.
“It’s been almost a year since I arrived and I have many reasons to #LoveThePhilippines—the food, the culture, and the people,” he said.
National government officials also expressed their support for the enhanced tourism campaign.
“I love it!”, Senate President Juan Miguel “Migz” Zubiri was quoted in a news report, praising the branding campaign as “clear and concise”.
Posting “Love the Philippines” on his Instagram, Senator Loren Legarda said there are countless ways to love the country, and expressed his full support for the newly launched campaign.
Former Senate President Pro Tempore and now House Deputy Speaker Ralph G. Recto, who described the Philippines as a destination like the “garden of roses”, also expressed his support through a statement.
“A rose by any other name is as sweet. As a travel destination, the Philippines is a garden of roses. I support the new DOT campaign,” enthused the House Deputy Speaker.
Meanwhile, Senator Grace Poe recognized the efforts of the DOT to attract more tourists to visit the Philippines. Senator Francis “Chiz” Escudero urged the public to “support it instead of directly criticizing it”.
Quantitative tourism achievements
Halfway through this year, the DOT has recorded 2.67 million international visitor arrivals on June 29, 2023, 2.44 million of which are foreigners. This year, the Department is targeting a baseline of 4.8 million international tourist arrivals.
South Koreans remain the main source of foreign markets with 665,757 travelers to the Philippines, followed by the United States (509,526), Australia (128,232), Japan (127,139), and Canada (123,439).
In 2022, the industry contributes 6.2 percent to the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) earning PHP1.87 trillion in tourism revenue.
DOT Secretary Christina Garcia Frasco expressed her gratitude to the public and all the officials who gave wide support to Gugma sa Pilipinas.
In a televised interview answering the question of some whether Love the Philippines is a “demand” from tourists, the DOT chief said that love is not demanded because it is a natural thing that should come from the heart. .
On the aspect of tourism, by showing the abundant assets of the Philippines—from its natural wonders to its heritage, tradition, and culture—to Secretary Frasco said he hopes the campaign will rekindle of love for the country.
“You can’t “ask” for love. This is a natural thing that should come from your heart. “Love the Philippines” is in the heart of every Filipino who loves their country. You can’t force someone to love their country any more than you can force them to love themselves, or others. This is a natural feeling that should come from your heart. And we truly believe that by showing our love for the country in our new tourism tagline, we can reawaken our fellow Filipinos in their own love for the country,” he said.
In addition, Secretary Frasco said that the tagline is also the “love letter to the world” of the Philippines, giving international tourists the opportunity to discover and know more about the Philippines, beyond promotions and stories. which used to be mainly focused on entertainment, repeating speech. that the Philippines still has a lot to offer from its heritage, culture, history, food, experiences, and especially the love and warmth of the Filipino people.
In a separate Facts First online interview with Christian Esguerra, veteran advertising executive Matec Villanueva shared the same observation.
“From the beginning, the first question is always: who am I talking to? Who is my target audience? Your target audience, as I understand it, are foreign tourists because what they see is the enemy of the regions,” said said Villanueva.
“So, what they’re trying to do is they’re trying to encapsulate that message in something inspiring, something attractive. So, they come up with what we call the big idea. But the big idea is based on a consumer insight or your target insight,” he added.
For Secretary Frasco, the launch of “Love the Philippines” is based on the needs of the industry after the devastating COVID-19 pandemic. This, as in the past a global health emergency has changed the motives, preferences, and behaviors of travelers, leading to what is now called “the changed traveler.”
The advertising executive also realized this in the enhanced tourism campaign.
“We have been in lockdown for three years. Tourists were different before the pandemic. Post-pandemic tourism is different. They have different views because before the pandemic, people were traveling, enjoying, then suddenly you can’t move for three years,” said Villanueva.
Build love as a concept
Love The Philippines as a concept, said Secretary Frasco, was created with careful consideration of the results of extensive market research and studies.
According to a market research released by Euromonitor, one of the leading independent providers of strategic market research, travelers are looking for new and authentic experiences in the real world, which means immersion in other cultures, finding curated experiences that are unique or out of the ordinary. .
In addition, travelers want to see a connection with love, and the word “love” is always primarily associated with the Philippines. Based on Brandwatch, one of the most trusted social media monitoring and analytics applications, the word “love” is frequently mentioned in high volume worldwide with a total mention of 140.4K (previously 92.24K) and a reach reached 91.21M (previously 59.72M).
The enhanced tourism campaign, Secretary Frasco said, is designed to highlight more of what there is to love about the Philippines.
“What food do they like? What destination do they like? What experience do they love in the Philippines? This is also an opportunity for our foreign friends from all over the world to discover a lot more ahead of us in how we marketed the Philippines until now,” Secretary Frasco said.
In an interview, Villanueva also said: “In this age of communication, advertising today is based on research because it is access to information, access to data. Now apparently, the group that did this, even the group (that conceptualized) It’s More Fun in the Philippines had data that supported them when they came out with It’s More Fun in the Philippines. According to the DOT, the tourists who came to the Philippines, the feeling that they came here, exceeded their expectations. They are happy with what they experienced because tourism is experiential. When they took a deep dive on social media, into the internet, they saw that the expression of satisfaction or exceeding expectations was not fun, it was love,” he explained.
“Expressing happiness is love,” he added.