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Micro-blogging Queen Yao Chen the face of campaign shoot

21 November 2012

Micro-blogging Queen Yao Chen the face of campaign shoot

Newly-wed Tourism New Zealand brand ambassador Yao Chen, dubbed China’s micro blogging queen, begins work on her latest 100% Pure New Zealand campaign shoot across the country this week.

The focus of the campaign is to demonstrate to potential Chinese travellers that the fantasy of Middle-earth is in fact the reality of New Zealand.

Yao Chen is one of China’s most high-profile celebrities and became Tourism New Zealand’s brand ambassador in August 2011.

Since that time, her Weibo following, the China equivalent to Twitter/Facebook has more than doubled from 12 million to 26.2 million.

She is one of the top five most followed micro-bloggers in the world after the likes of Lady Gaga and Justin Bieber, and ahead of President Obama.

Last weekend she wed fiancé Cao Yu in New Zealand’s world-renowned resort town Queenstown. Yao Chen has posted photos of the wedding and visitor activities in and around Queenstown on Weibo, sparking enormous interest and comment on New Zealand as a holiday destination.

Yao Chen and her new husband have stayed on in New Zealand and she will start shooting the new Tourism New Zealand campaign tomorrow, Thursday 22 November.

Tourism New Zealand’s General Manager Marketing Communications Justin Watson says that the imagery taken during the photo shoot will invoke the magic of Middle-earth but show Yao Chen experiencing it first-hand.

“It will build on the recent launch of Tourism New Zealand’s global 100% Middle-earth, 100% Pure New Zealand advertisement in China which has been adapted for the market using a voice over from Yao Chen.

“It will also show our Chinese Active Considerers that a New Zealand holiday is a rejuvenating experience,” says Justin.

Tourism New Zealand’s General Manager Asia Markets Tony Everitt, based in Shanghai, says that Yao Chen was chosen to be Tourism New Zealand’s brand ambassador in Mainland China because of her influence, popularity and vast audience reach across our target market of Active Considerers.

“Working with these individuals helps extend New Zealand’s profile and inspire travellers to follow in the footsteps of the celebrities they admire.

“With the growth of social media, Yao Chen’s reach makes her word even more powerful.

“Tourism New Zealand’s securing of Yao Chen as a brand ambassador has been a huge success. Her audience reach is something that Tourism New Zealand could never afford to buy in a market like China.”

For the year ended September 2012 visitor arrivals from China exceeded arrivals from the USA for the first time becoming the third largest source of visitors to New Zealand, behind Australia and the UK.


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