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Posts Tagged ‘George Zimmerman’

Pure Michigan Campaign Lives On!

Earlier this week, McCann Midwest’s award-winning “Pure Michigan” campaign was on the brink of dying due to a lack of government funding. Travel Michigan vice president George Zimmerman called for quick action, saying that if funding wasn’t resolved by today, “Pure Michigan” would not run its winter campaign. Luckily for Zimmerman and Governor Jennifer Granholm, the state legislature approved $10 million in funding to save the campaign early this morning, $15m less than what Granholm and Zimmerman asked for, but enough to allow “Pure Michigan” to present its snowy wooden glens and frozen lakes to the rest of the country for the next few months.

Of course, this sudden emergency funding might have something to do with “Pure Michigan” winning Best in Show on Wednesday at the “2010 D Show” (mentioned in yesterday’s Morning Stir), an awards ceremony dedicated to honoring the best in creative advertising out of the Detroit area. The awards show also honored McCann Midwest’s “May the Best Car Win” campaign for GM.

While we applaud Pure Michigan’s knack for winning awards and its ability to stay afloat due to 11th-hour government spending decisions, we have to wonder, if the campaign really did help bring $1.3 billion to Michigan businesses and $93 million to state taxes, then why was it so hard getting the state legislature to pony up the $35 million to keep the campaign going for another year? Also, what percentage of that $10 million is going into all-things-Michigan narrator Tim Allen’s pocket?

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‘Pure Michigan’ Winter Campaign Will Be Canceled on Friday

In the wake of news that Michigan’s state government would not be able to afford running their “Pure Michigan” ads this fall, Travel Michigan announced today that Dec. 3 would mark the cancellation of the campaign’s winter advertising unless the state can somehow make up for a huge loss in funding. 2011′s fiscal promotion budget is set at $5 million, a sharp decline from last year’s $17 million.

The “Pure Michigan” campaign, a McCann-Erickson Detroit creation, launched in 2006. During its history, the campaign has won a plethora of awards and acknowledgments including Forbes naming it one of the top 10 greatest tourism promotion campaigns ever created and a USA Today front-page feature calling it one of tourism’s greatest success stories. Despite featuring narration from Michigan-native Tim Allen, the campaign saw an increase of 5 million tourists to Michigan who brought a total of $1.3 billion to Michigan businesses and paid another $93 million in Michigan taxes. In late October, 67% of Michigan voters supported continued funding for the campaign.

George Zimmerman, Travel Michigan’s vice president, feels that there is little time for saving the campaign. “We hope to be advertising Michigan’s wealth of winter activities to potential visitors from Chicago and other key out-of-state markets in Ohio and Indiana, but can only do so if we have our funding resolved by December 3,” he says in a statement. “National Pure Michigan advertising for spring/summer – our biggest tourism season – is scheduled to begin airing in March and must be purchased in January. We cannot move forward with our spring/summer advertising buy unless the legislature provides funding before they adjourn in December. The time for action is now.”

Compared to travel campaigns from Montana and St. Louis, “Pure Michigan” truly had Chicagoans looking to escape the city hooked.