Google Hangouts recruits Asian pop stars for new ‘A-Pop’ initiative


J-pop star Kyary Pamyu Pamyu
J-pop star Kyary Pamyu Pamyu

Google’s worldwide strategy to make Google+ a competitive social platform is increasingly making use of celebrities in its marketing efforts. All members of the famous pop idol group AKB48 are on Google+, and the annual election to battle for the center position on stage was streamed live via Google Hangouts. And now Google has just announced its latest celebrity-related project, ‘A-Pop Star Week,’ targeting the Asian market.

The project, set to kick off on March 8, assembles a range of pop singers from China, Japan, and Korea on Google Hangouts. Celebrities includes J-Pop diva Kyary Pamyu Pamyu (pictured above), Korean star 2PM, and Chinese singer LeeHom Wang. Each celebrity has made an announcement about the coming event on YouTube, asking fans to submit questions for them to answer during the hangout.

On the YouTube Asian Pop Channel, you can find the schedule for these hangouts as well as twenty music videos and newly released singles by the artists. Each musician will then hand-pick five lucky fans to participate in the hangout.

Kyary Pamyy Pamyu is one of the best known of these performers, famous for her unique digital performances [1]. Recently on her twentieth birthday, she performed at Sojoji temple in Shiba Park in front of the brightly lit Tokyo Tower. The spectacle was organized by mobile phone carrier au KDDI (TYO:9433) which turned the local area into a digital interactive theme park. 1,500 participants were able to manipulate taxis, water fountains, and street lights by using their smartphone as a remote control.

Google+ had 25 million users in Japan as of July 2011. The company’s celebrity-recruitment efforts first started in 2012, so the effect of such projects on growing its user base has yet to be fully realized. Stay tuned!

  1. Her name is nearly impossible to pronounce, even for Japanese people. So don’t feel bad if you stumble!  ↩