For the first time in its history, Wisconsin is allowing an out-of-state agency pitch its tourism business, much to the surprise of Wisconsin agencies which consider state accounts exclusively their own.
'It would be the closest thing to committing political suicide,' said one Milwaukee agency head. Another agency head half-jokingly said, 'I think the Wisconsin shops would be outraged if an out-of-state agency won. And to think it would be an agency from Illinois.'
Tourism officials downplayed the inclusion of an out-of-state agency and said no agency has an advantage over another agency because of the objective scoring system used by the state. The officials did say that Lois's geographic location was one of the reasons the agency got into the finals. The majority of tourists traveling to Wisconsin each year are from Illinois, more specifically from Chicago. And while Wisconsinites love the revenue, some feel out-of-staters overcrowd their highways and parks in summer.
But Illinois and Chicago will remain a big key for future Wisconsin advertising. Part of this summer's push by Laughlin/Constable is an outdoor campaign that asks Chicagoans to visit Wisconsin, 'Illinois' State Park.'
Lois is pitching the business in conjunction with Chicago-based pr firm Aaron D. Cushman & Associates. Other agencies in the pitch are Milwaukee agencies Laughlin/Constable; Hoffman, York & Compton; and William Eisner & Associates; and Mequon, Wis.-based Birdsall Voss & Kloppenburg.
Copyright Adweek L.P. (1993)