‘I Love New York’ Is 20

By Cristina Merrill

NEW YORK–The Empire State Development Corp. is gearing up for a new ‘I Love New York’ campaign, having recently hired three boutique agencies to create the ads and one to buy television time.

1997 is the 20th anniversary of the campaign, said Linda Wohler, deputy commissioner for advertising, marketing and tourism at ESDC in Albany, N.Y. Sources said that ESDC is planning to spend about $11 million on advertising in 1997.

Last May, ESDC sent out more than 1,000 requests for proposals in search of an agency. Ogilvy & Mather, New York, was the incumbent.

Wohler recently picked four smaller agencies, three of which–Toolbox in New York and Albany-based shops Media Logic and Oberlander–will handle creative duties. Media First International, New York, will handle spot TV buying.

‘We’re going with boutiques now,’ Wohler said. The agencies’ smaller fees will enable ESDC to spend more on other projects, she said. One such project is a promotional print and radio campaign, tagged ‘New York: fun to go,’ from Media Logic. It will consist of ads running in niche magazines and a promotional guide that will position New York as the preferred summer tourist destination.

Wohler said that the savings also helped ESDC hire DDB Needham on a project basis to produce two commemorative spots, currently on the air through May 5.

Starting May 7, four additional TV and radio spots from Toolbox will roll out in New York and seven other markets like Binghamton, N.Y.; Hartford, Conn.; and as far west as Cleveland.

Copyright ASM Communications, Inc. (1997) ALL RIGHTS RESERVED