Chicago Launches ‘First True’ Promotional Plan

Chicago wants to drop its "Second City" moniker in favor of something a little more ... confident.

In what's being pegged as the city's "first true branding effort," locally based firms were hired to promote Chicago as a first-class tourist and business destination through ads, brochures and even commercials.

Chi's leverage? Outstanding restaurants, theaters and museums, not to mention America's tallest building.

"Chicago is an international destination for both tourists and businesses, who come to enjoy our state-of-the-art facilities and unmatched assets," said Mayor Rahm Emanuel in a statement supporting the Chicago Convention & Tourism Bureau.

Chicago's first-ever television spots are expected to launch in January and target regional markets, including Cincinnati, St. Louis and Milwaukee. The Chicago Convention & Tourism Bureau unveils the advertising campaign at a Thursday evening event.

Tourism Board officials say $500,000 was raised for regional advertising with the help of  Broadway in Chicago, The Field Museum, Museum of Science + Industry, Navy Pier and Shedd Aquarium. Each will be featured in 15-second ads.

"As a result of the branding effort, we are taking an important step towards harnessing the city's many accolades and attractions into impactful tourism spending in Chicago," said Bruce Rauner, chairman of CCTB's board of directors.

The Bureau expects the initiative to increase the number of visitors to Chicago, translating to what they hope will be new jobs, millions of dollars in local spending and increased tax revenues.

To kick things off, the city partnered with Chicago-based Downtown Partners Chicago for creative input, M|Buy, Inc. for media buying and The Royal Order of Experience Design for website redesign. 

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