We went after the toughest audience in the country — New Yorkers.
Through proprietary research, we discovered two key insights: consumers in their 20s and 30s were most open to moving, and the first step to consider moving somewhere is having visited there first. So we promoted tourism and travel to Iowa as part of our strategy for growing a quality workforce. Then we set out to convince those who seemed least likely to find Iowa appealing — New York City residents — and made an example of them.
We set up a fake real estate office in New York City and offered up listings secretly from Iowa. We captured priceless reactions and created a video that disbanded the perception that Iowa was just a dusty farmland. We continued to reveal the real Iowa through online ads on travelandleisure.com, Uber car wraps and a website we concepted called ThisIsIowa.com. We engaged social media influencers to encourage Iowa travel and spread truths about the state.