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Welcome to this week’s edition of Culture Wire, a newsletter brought to you by Singapore-based pop culture and lifestyle marketing agency Culture Group.

🧜🏿‍♀️To misquote Sebastian: ‘when it comes to diversity, the human world, is a mess’. Perhaps that explains the success of Disney+’s live-action remake of The Little Mermaid which just became the channel’s most streamed film premiere to date, racking up 16M views within the first five days. We’ve said it before, and we will again: representation matters!

  • Innovation of the Week: Why this travel brand is betting on KOLs
  • Fax, No Printer: Where might Gen Z look for love?
  • Regional Round-up: Food collaborations, personal shoppers and living the live!

Innovation of the Week


Our friends at Klook are celebrating their 9th anniversary by working with 1,000 creators across 10 global markets. As part of the celebrations, deals and discounts to 14 destinations will be available, alongside a travel trivia game that unlocks prizes. It’s all part of the online travel platform’s plan to build out the recently-launched Klook Kreators: an affiliate program that invites social media users to create travel and experience content, and be rewarded for it.

💡 Our take

According to the Klook Travel Pulse survey, which ran in 12 markets including Singapore, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam, social media is the top inspiration tool for Gen Z travelers, with more that half using these platforms to discover destinations and experiences. Much of that inspiration comes via creators and KOLs, particularly nano-influencers (10K followers and below), who make up 45% of the Klook Kreator program and micro-influencers (10-50K followers), who make up 32% of the program.

As established players further legitimize the creator economy and new tech tools democratize content creation, more people will be inspired to join in – and many will be rewarded for their endeavors. Most won’t make it to mega celebrity status but, as we’ve previously discussed, nano-influencers have always wielded considerable *ahem* influence in SEA, thanks to their ability to create hyper-localized, relevant content for an engaged group of followers. This isn’t going anywhere! In the coming year(s) we expect that creators with a smaller but more tight-knit community will continue to drive purchase considerations and decisions… there will just simply be more of them catering to more niches. 

More broadly, our friends at Klook are harnessing an underlying shift – when it comes to experiences, younger consumers want in: one in three Millennial and Gen Z travelers are willing to spend more than double of the average monthly income in Asia (USD 1,069) on their next vacation. This isn’t new news, but it’s been given a fresh impetus in the form of post-COVID revenge for experiences (see last week’s newsletter for more on that).

Klook has cemented a position as the leading platform to practically facilitate this demand, but the Klook Kreators program ensures they can help consumers discover and connect with these experiences in authentic ways. What role will your brand play in young people’s quest for experiences? And how can a robust creator strategy help with that? Drop us an email if you want to discuss your 2024 strategy!

Fax, No Printer*

For those of you born before 1997, ‘fax, no printer‘ is Gen Z speak for ‘undeniable facts I agree with’

What’s the latest dating platform you haven’t heard of?

A. Tiktok

B. Roblox

C. Zepeto

Scroll down to the end of the newsletter for the correct answer!

Regional Round-up

🍜 Supinya ‘Jay Fai’ Junsuta, star of the Netflix hit Street Food, is collaborating with the popular noodle brand Shin Ramyun on a new flavor. No official release date but, given Jay Fai’s credentials (she runs the first Bangkok street food stall to be awarded a Michelin star), it’ll be worth waiting for! While there are many food collabs, this shows there will forever be an appetite for something new.

🏎️ K-pop star Jackson Wang has a busy weekend: he will perform at the F1 Singapore Grand Prix and will make a guest appearance at Marina Bay Sands’ Cé La Vi as Hennessy V.S.O.P’s global brand ambassador. Regular Culture Wire readers know that we’ve been exploring the boom of live events in SEA – it doesn’t get much glitzier than this!

🎭 Sticking with live events: Singapore’s National Arts Council (NAC) wants to make it easier for audiences to find local cultural events. – which will also offer members-only privileges – is one strand of the NAC’s five-year plan to build a more sustainable arts ecosystem. NAC sees partnerships as central to their roadmap. Time to consider how your brand might get involved?

🛍️ China pioneered the social commerce model, and brands in the country are still pushing the concept forward. Now, Xiaohongshu is giving some livestream KOLs an official title, marketing them as ‘personal shoppers’ that direct viewers to the products they’re interested in. We will be watching to see if this social commerce model catches on in Southeast Asia!

⚠️ ICYMI: OK, One Piece of news! Following the launch of the live-action adaptation, Netflix and Enthusiast Gaming have launched a game on Fortnite inspired by the original IP. Developed using Unreal Editor for Fortnite, which allows users to design and create experiences outside the game’s battle royale mode, it offers one more avenue for fans to engage with the title. Has your brand gotten on the One Piece wave yet?

This Week's Trivia Answer

B. Roblox

Over the last few months, Roblox has been keen to stress it isn’t just for kids – users aged 17 to 24 are the platform’s fastest-growing demographic. To reflect this shift, the platform introduced experiences for people aged 17+, promising more mature themes. Earlier this week, CEO David Baszucki predicted that, in the next five years, ‘thousands’ of adults will meet and form ‘real-life relationships’ in dating experiences on the platform. 

When you think about it, this development isn’t that farfetched. We know that people are already establishing communities around games. And over the past decade the stigma around online dating has declined, with young people in particular embracing apps like Tinder and Bumble. So why wouldn’t they find love in virtual worlds? 


🚀 Over and Out!

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Your Culture Mavens,

Acacia, Aliya, Angela, Kiko, & Vicki