In a continuing effort to transform manga graphic novels into a mass market category, Tokyopop is planning a series of television commercials to be aired between May and September.
John Powers, Tokyopop v-p, marketing, told PW that the manga publisher has commissioned a series of 30-second television spots that will appear on MTV, the Cartoon Network, Spike TV, G4TV (the interactive gaming network) and TechTV beginning May 10. On the Cartoon Network, the spots will appear during the late-night time block (beginning at 8 p.m. on Saturdays), which features anime and Western cartoons, and the Toonami time block, which features anime from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Powers said the spots will feature Tokyopop's "Join the Manga Revolution" theme, the campaign slogan it uses in print advertising. "We've been focused on our core fans in print publications and at conventions," said Powers. "Now we want to break out of our fan base and expose the general audience to manga."
In May the spots will promote six titles (Sgt. Frog; Psychic Academy; Saiyuki; ShutterBox; Kill Me, Kiss Me; and D.N. Angel). From June to September, the spots will showcase three titles each month. The spots will open with the Manga Revolution ad campaign logo, focus on jacket covers, use computer-generated graphics to preview pages and end by pointing fans to buy the titles in bookstores, comics shops, music and video stores—"all the outlets that sell our manga," said Powers.