New ad seeks to lure tourism to Ohio with perfect road trip

A screenshot of the latest Ohio tourist ad, courtesy of the Ohio Department of Development.

A student is walking around the Ohio University campus when she spots a welcome surprise: Grandma, with a sickening smile, beckoning her on a spontaneous road trip.

  • They go on a whirlwind weekend excursion that would make Ferris Bueller jealous ⁠ – biking in Cleveland, hiking in Yellow Springs and paddling the Scioto River.
  • The two are even considering matching Evolved Body Art tattoos on North High Street.

What is happening: Ohio is featuring this impromptu trip and other Buckeye State experiences as part of its “Find It Here” tourism campaign.

  • The state plans to invest $8 million in television, radio and digital advertising in Ohio and its five neighboring states.

why is it important: Ohio tourism typically generates tens of billions of dollars in visitor spending each year, according to the state’s Department of Development, but that figure has been hit hard during the pandemic.

  • As travel increases again and summer approaches, Ohio wants Midwesterners to choose our cities, amusement parks and trails.

The big picture: Ohio has seen a major boost in self-promotion in recent years, between that and ongoing attempts to convince coastal residents and businesses to move here.

Our point of view:While those “Ohio is for leaders” billboards are a bit grumpy, this ad seems more heartfelt and effective. Who doesn’t want to skip homework and ride a roller coaster instead?

  • The montage music by Columbus folk band Caamp is a nice touch.

🤔 This ad got us thinking… what would a promo focused on central Ohio look like?

  • We imagine a family enjoying Nordecke’s rowdy section at a Crew game, strolling through the Columbus Arts Festival, and feeding giraffes at the zoo’s Heart of Africa exhibit.
  • Then end the day with a cool drink at Edison Brewing Company, watching the planes take off and land from the hilltop patio. Now it is a day worth skipping class.

📬 What would your Ohio ad look like? E-mail [email protected] with your ideas.

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