North Dakota Tourism unveils new advertising campaign for 2014

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Bismarck, N.D. – North Dakota Tourism kicked off 2014 with a new advertising campaign as part of the ongoing efforts to market the state as a tourist destination. Governor Jack Dalrymple and North Dakota Department of Commerce Tourism Division Director Sara Otte Coleman unveiled the 2014 creative strategy today.

For the past decade, Legendary has been a proven branding statement for North Dakota, and this year’s advertising campaign continues to build on this positioning. The campaign plays to the authenticity that defines North Dakota and connects the landscape to the people in a real, emotional, simple way. The new direction sets the tone for all components in the 2014 campaign, with the development of:

  • Six television ads that individually showcase the experiences of golfing, hiking, history, family adventure, fishing, hunting, outdoors and, new this year, an ad dedicated to Theodore Roosevelt National Park.
  • A print ad series to out-of-state audiences promoting specific North Dakota experiences of golfing, history/western and birding.
  • A print ad series to Canadian audiences highlighting dining, hiking, hunting and fishing, shopping and entertainment.
  • Newly designed 2014 Travel Guide.
  • A new 2014 Hunting & Fishing Guide.

“Just over 10 years ago, we started aggressively marketing North Dakota as a great place to live, work, and play, and those efforts have paid off in big ways for our state,” Gov. Dalrymple said. “North Dakota’s tourism industry is an important part of our state’s economic growth, and the 2014 marketing campaign will continue to promote North Dakota’s legendary tourism offerings and position our state as a premier travel destination.”

North Dakota’s investment in tourism is paying off. The state’s tourism industry has grown steadily since the initial launch of the Legendary brand. Research shows that the 2012 advertising campaign produced more than 1.4 million trips to North Dakota, $231.6 million in visitor spending and $17.8 million in tax revenue.

The campaign uses stunning imagery that intimately captures the unique North Dakota experience. “North Dakota’s authentic landscapes provide the perfect backdrop for visitors to have meaningful experiences and real adventures,” Otte Coleman said.

Audiences in Minnesota, Wisconsin, South Dakota, Montana, Manitoba and Saskatchewan are the primary targets for the 2014 campaign efforts.

Otte Coleman pointed out that the success of North Dakota Tourism’s Legendary strategy is not by accident. “The success of the Legendary strategy over the past 10 years is in large part due to our research-driven approach. We consistently use research and measurement to refine the strategy to keep us on track year after year.”

The most recent visitor study indicated that outdoor adventure is the driving force behind the majority of visits to North Dakota. Therefore, many of the ads in the 2014 campaign showcase the state’s outdoor beauty. In addition, this research prompted the creation of an ad dedicated to Theodore Roosevelt National Park.

Josh Duhamel provides voice talent for TV ads

North Dakota Tourism tapped into homegrown talent for the 2014 television ads. Minot native and Hollywood actor Josh Duhamel provided the voice talent for the television ads for North Dakota Tourism’s 2014 advertising campaign.

“Those who follow Josh in his career and on social media know he has a lot of pride in his home state and has promoted North Dakota in interviews and on social media well before he provided his voice talent for our TV campaign. So, it was a natural fit for him to do this,” Otte Coleman said.

Otte Coleman further noted that Duhamel wasn’t chosen just because he’s a celebrity, but also because his voice fit perfectly with the look and feel of the advertising campaign and complements the visual creative.

“We are proud that one of North Dakota’s native sons would share his talent with us as we promote North Dakota as a tourist destination,” said Gov. Dalrymple.  “Because he grew up in Minot, Josh knows firsthand about all of the fun things to see and do here, and he continues to come home to take in North Dakota’s offerings.”

Duhamel’s career has spanned everything from recurring roles in the TV series “Las Vegas” and “All My Children” to supporting and starring roles in movies. He’s best known as one of the leads in the blockbuster “Transformer” movie series.

“The best state in America – my home state of North Dakota – has some awesome new TV ads, promoting all the beautiful scenery and fun things to do and see there. I’m proud of my home state and was truly honored when they asked me to be the voice of their newest Legendary advertising campaign,” Duhamel said.

This year’s campaign kicked off last week with the outdoor-themed TV ad, along with the distribution of the 2014 Travel Guide and the 2014 Hunting & Fishing Guide. The remaining elements of the campaign will follow. Both publications can be viewed online at NDtourism.com and copies of the publications can be obtained by calling 800-435-5663 or 701-328-2525 or visiting the North Dakota Tourism office at 1600 E Century AVE, Suite 2, Bismarck.

North Dakota Tourism’s 2014 advertising campaign can be viewed online at NDtourism.com.

As one of North Dakota’s leading industries, tourism attracts visitors to the state’s 646 attractions, 357 events and festivals, and 886 hotels. In addition, more than 33,000 jobs in North Dakota are attributed to this robust industry.

Follow North Dakota Tourism on Facebook at www.facebook.com/TravelND or on Twitter at http://twitter.com/NorthDakota and get tips on what to see and do all year long.