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Japanese Crypto Exchanges Tap Star Power for Marketing Arms Race

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Japanese Cryptocurrency was the first to show TV commercials at the end of April last year, according to Japan times. At the time, the Japanese government had just legalized Bitcoin as a legal method of payment. If we see volume wise Japan is the largest Cryptocurrency exchange.

Bitflyer, DMM Bitcoin and Tech Bureau are several exchanges that have been launching TV commercials with original music and tapping into star power. “The presence of TV commercials by Cryptocurrency exchanges has significantly increased in the past year,” stated by CM Soken. Japan Times reported “Between December 20th to January 19th, TV ads by coin check and Bitflyer were aired 819 times in the Kanto region, comparable to major firms such as Toyota Motor Corp, NTT DocomoInc, and Mcdonald’s Japan.

Kenji Harashima is specializing in financial technologies and is a senior researcher for the Mizuho Research Institution. He said, “Japanese exchanges are the most active in the world. Not only is this the result of tight regulations in China and South Korea, it is also because you can use leverage to make investments.”

How is this happening?

Shibuya is Japan’s busiest and the most famous shopping districts in Tokyo. In Shibuya, there is a huge billboard featuring a Japanese celebrity for Cryptocurrency. A 20 years old British tourist told who was standing beneath the billboard said  “when I was in London I would see ads all over Facebook, but never on TV or in the streets like this”.

Every main Crypto currency company in Japan hiring big TV actors or celebrities to promote their currency. So naturally the prices of such ads are very high. Bittrade and coincheck Crypto exchanges have tapped into star power to advertise their business. Bittrade hired actress Ruriko Kojima. Japanese actor and model Rico Narumi has been hired by Bitflyer. He will will appear in its commercials and be the Cryptocurrency’s spokes model. Coincheck hired popular local comedian Tetsuro Degawa.

Actress Rika Nakagaea and a model known as Laura were hired for DMM Bitcoin’s commercial. Japan times wrote “Coincheck executives have admitted that they might have put more priority on attracting customers with ads rather than enhancing security.”

CEO Yoshitaka Kitao said, “The things that make me angry is that they spend money on commercials that should have been spent on their systems.”

The Japan Cryptocurrency business Association is an industry group with more than 150 members including Coincheck. It has also requested its members to advertise responsibly.

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