While Japanese TV dramas have spread to other channels such as the state-run Vietnam Television (VTV), the bid to secure airtime for Japanese commercial products have also increased. Japanese broadcasters are hoping that such efforts will cement a good sponsorship between their company and the advertising firms.
Watching Japanese TV dramas in VTV, one would notice that 12 minutes of the commercial break airtime have been allocated to nine Japanese companies that are present in Vietnam. Mayonnaise maker Kewpie Corp has launched a commercial upon Tokyo Broadcasting System Television’s (TBS) invitation. Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co., producers of sports drink Pocari Sweat, also showed a commercial when the product launched in Vietnam in 2012. Even Rohto Pharmaceutical Co. and Dai-ichi Life Insurance Co. have decided to sponsor the timeslot allocated for the Japanese drama.
According to Shuntaro Tanaka, chief operating officer of Dentsu Media Vietnam Co., Japanese companies need TV advertisements to promote their products. “To sell the safety and promote the health consciousness of Japanese products, I think there would be a synergistic effect when you bundle TV commercials with dramas that reflect Japanese lifestyles,” he noted. It also added to the credibility and backing of the TV show. Initially, VTV had apprehensions on showing Japanese dramas because of fierce competition from the Korean shows. But according to Shintaro Hayashi, head of TBS’ Global Business Department, “With sponsors attached (to the shows) serving as a reassurance, we got a good time slot.” Japan is looking to export more TV shows and films in hopes of having a ripple effect on other industries.