New tourism campaign set to go live soon with residents’ stories, photos

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NEWPORT, R.I. (WPRI) — If at first you don’t succeed, take it to the experts.

The people of Rhode Island are being enlisted to promote tourism, by sharing their own photos and stories of what they love about the state on social media. Images and narratives may be used in future ads encouraging tourists to visit.

The Rhode Island Commerce Corporation, through the “MIY (Make It Yours) Story Studio” it’s been operating in pop-up shops, including in Providence, is calling for submissions through social media and through a website, with entries marked with the hashtag #myRIstory. So far, there have been about 700 submissions, the Providence Journal reported.

All the state’s regional marketers are being welcomed into the fold for input as well, after the campaign of “Cooler and Warmer” released this past spring was declared a total flop by residents.

Evan Smith, the CEO of Discover Newport, said Wednesday he believes the submissions will keep streaming in. “For some people, it’s going to be about architecture; for some people it will be about events. For some people it’s going to be arts and culture, for other people it’s going to be food. Everybody has a love story with their city, their state, and we want everybody to tell their own unique story.”

The MIY Story Studio launched in April, but as time ticks down for the campaign to launch with the new content, organizers are waving the flag to bring in submissions before they start publishing digital ads on July 25.

A special Legislative Commission studying methods of growing tourism in Rhode Island is also scheduled to meet at Newport’s Old Colony House on Friday.

In today’s social media world, there’s a market — and a demand — for everyone’s opinion, and that’s being mined for the campaign.

“There’s nothing like a referral from a friend or family member, and I think that’s the most powerful tool that we can use in our promotional toolbox right now to get people to come to the state,” said Smith.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.


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