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Brand Insights: Kumamon

Part 4

Kumamon orくまモン

Kumamon, more than just a mascot, is a key public relations figure for Kumamoto Prefecture. Created in 2011 to celebrate the completion of the Kyushu Shinkansen line, Kumamon holds the official titles of "Kumamoto Prefecture's Sales Manager and Happiness Manager." He's not merely a character but a bona fide civil servant, employed at the Kumamoto Prefectural Office. Gaining immense popularity both nationally and internationally, Kumamon clinched the 2011 Yuru-chara Grand Prix, a contest that measures the popularity of such mascots.

In terms of economic impact, Kumamon's influence is staggering. The annual revenue generated from Kumamon-branded products soared to 169.8 billion yen in 2020. This marked a nearly 5 billion yen increase from the previous year, setting a record for nine consecutive years of sales growth. These figures are not just impressive but also indicative of Kumamon's extraordinary success as a regional mascot.

Kumamon's strategy revolves around three core principles: "Surprise," "Story," and "Share." Surprise-signifies a constant pursuit of innovation and embracing new challenges. Story- focuses on creating narrative-driven initiatives, weaving engaging stories rather than relying on mere gimmicks. Share-emphasizes creating value that benefits everyone involved – beneficial for sellers, buyers, and society at large. This approach has not only endeared Kumamon to the prefecture and businesses but also to the local citizens and fans worldwide, making the character a beloved symbol in and beyond Kumamoto.

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#mascot#kumamoto prefecture#japan
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