New Orleans Celebrates Its 300th Birthday With a Massively Fun Tourism Campaign

A new tagline, print, TV and more from 360i

New Orleans is going big for its 300th birthday bash.
New Orleans Tourism Marketing Corporation

Next year is historic for the city of New Orleans. In 2018 the city will celebrate its 300th anniversary—its tricentennial. To celebrate such a glorious event the New Orleans Tourism Marketing Corporation released a massive campaign, “One Time, in New Orleans,” to kick the party off.

NOTMC worked with its creative agency of record 360i to roll out the integrated campaign—which spans TV, print, social and experiential. The campaign also includes a new tagline, “One Time, in New Orleans,” and a logo for the city and its tourism efforts.

The idea for the “One Time, in New Orleans” campaign came from the simple insight that while people leave the city with souvenirs, from T-shirts to coffee mugs, what they really leave with is stories–stories they can’t wait to tell their friends and share with their followers on social media. There’s a heavy social component to the campaign that encourages people to share, but it’s also about sharing the city’s own history and untold stories with the world.

“We thought the best way to share our 300 years of history was to connect that to 300 years of stories,” Mark Romig, president and CEO of New Orleans Tourism Marketing Corporation, said. “I think that really sets New Orleans apart from many places. It has stories about creation, rebirth, silliness and indulgence. Some are inspirational stories, some are hard truth stories, but all of them people own and they are our greatest ambassadors.”

A national TV spot rolled out earlier this month during Monday Night Football and depicts some of these historic moments from the city’s past. Each story is beautifully projected onto The Presbytére (a building designed in 1791) in the French Quarter, while local talent preform in front of a crowd. The stories featured in the 60-second spot also make their way into the print work as well.

360i and company created seven different print ads, each one featuring a different piece of the story. The ads also introduce the city’s new logo mark and tagline, which also have an interesting story behind them. (See the common theme here?)

In the process of working on the campaign, 360i’s team made a few trips to New Orleans to find inspiration. The team took some art directors and photographers along to capture images of some of the iconic buildings and colors used on those landmarks.

“It really blends the old and the present, it’s an elegant script but the entire design system that we put together–the color schemes, the way that New Orleans is written out—we’re calling it ‘elegant grit,'” explained Romig.

“When it came to things like color we actually looked at the city guidelines of how homes in New Orleans are supposed to be painted. We chose specific houses in different neighborhoods to be the basis for five different color palettes,” added Jeffrey Anderson, group creative director at 360i.

To truly make the project complete, 360i wanted the city of New Orleans to really think outside the box and do something with its marketing that it had never done before. So the duo turned to augmented reality, AI and IBM Watson. Beginning in October the NOTMC and 360i will place two storytelling booths around the city–one smaller version will permanently reside in the city’s international airport and the other (a reclaimed shipping container) will travel to major events held in New Orleans throughout the year.

When you step inside one of these booths, you can start telling your story. Maybe it’s about a delicious meal you had one night, or that charming little corner where you and a loved one shared a romantic dance. Depending on the topic, the booth will then project collected video onto the storyteller. So if you’re talking about food, footage of delicious New Orleans food will roll.