R.I. COMMERCE Secretary Stefan Pryor said they are committed to moving the tourism marketing campaign forward and making it a success, and want to engage Rhode Islanders in the process through the latest initiative, called "Make it Yours."
PROVIDENCE – “Make it Yours” is the latest tourism strategy from the R.I. Commerce Corporation.
After a new slogan, Rhode Island: Cooler & Warmer, was unveiled to widespread criticism, resulting in its abandonment less than a week after its debut, Commerce RI said it is now focusing on engaging Rhode Islanders in the tourism marketing campaign through “Make It Yours.”
Through the MIY sessions, residents can share stories, images and suggestions about the state, which, according to R.I. Commerce Secretary Stefan Pryor, will “help inform, infuse and inspire our marketing campaign going forward.”
“We are committed to moving our marketing campaign forward and making it a success,” Pryor said in a statement. “Over the past several weeks, our team has stepped up its engagement with key stakeholders including our colleagues in the tourism regions. We're grateful for this dialogue, which provides our team with ongoing on-the-ground insights. As a next step, we are pleased to offer these ‘MIY’ public engagement opportunities.”
Rhode Islanders can visit the MIY Story Studio to tell their stories about the state; they also can share videos and photos. The temporary pop-up storefront is opening Thursday from 5 to 8 p.m. at 250 Westminster St.
The MIY Story Studio also will be open April 29 through May 6; Hours are Monday-Saturday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Sunday, 1 to 6 p.m. Admission is free.
Another feature is the MIY Road show, a special edition of the story studio that will hit the road for one day, visiting multiple locations across the state. Commerce RI said dates and details will be announced soon.
Details about the MIY website – in which users can upload stories and showcase their photos and videos – will be released Thursday night at the MIY Story Studio opening, as well as how to engage on social media using the hashtag #MyRIStory.
The MIY program is being led by Epic Decade.
“There are no greater advocates for Rhode Island than Rhode Islanders who are passionate and proud and have lived a collection of experiences that illustrate what this place is all about,” Seth Goldenberg, CEO and founder of Epic Decade and chief creative officer of the tourism campaign, said. “MIY plays off the ‘Do It Yourself’ DIY culture. It’s a theater, a forum and a conversation to learn from and to capture those unique and amazing stories that we are all living here every day.”
Bob Billington, president of Blackstone Valley Tourism Council, called MIY “an unprecedented commitment to understand our state’s DNA in order to shape our tourism story.”
“When I have shared the news of the program with my community here in the Blackstone Valley they are excited and want to be involved,” Billington said.
This latest initiative is in addition to investments being made across paid, earned and social media, and is within the existing tourism campaign budget allocation.