The New Mexico Tourism Department has unveiled this multi-media video, now airing on television in Colorado Springs, CO; Tucson, AZ; El Paso, Lubbock, Midland, Odessa and Amarillo, TX, and unleashed on NM’s Own revamped NM Tourism website, here.
In addition to the video, print ads from the campaign will be placed in Southwest Airlines’ Spirit in-flight magazine, Texas Monthly, Budget Travel and in NM Tourism’s own publication, New Mexico Magazine.
The entire project from bid to post-production has drawn criticism, including our own here, here, here, here and here.
As part of the launch of the much maligned production, New Mexico Tourism Director Monique Jacobson is back in the justification and explanation seat, offering the following translation of the campaign’s target and intent.
NM Tourism Director, Monique Jacobson to The Albuquerque Journal:
The campaign is designed to appeal to a “psychographic” group — “people with an adventurous spirit and thirst for authenticity”
NM Tourism Director, Monique Jacobson to The Santa Fe New Mexican:
“A hard sell wouldn’t work with this audience…This particular target tends to be higher income…They are people who will choose to spend money on travel.”
Despite assertions by Jacobson below, that “this is just the first of many spots”, Veronica Valencia, director of marketing for the Tourism Department breaks down how the bulk of $2M budget has already been spent:
Vendor Inc. cost $275,000 in fees.
Production of all the ads cost $350,000. Production is a broad term that applies to everything from scouting sites, hiring talent and filming the ads to producing the music that goes along with the ads as well as drawing up the print and billboard ads, according to Valencia.
More than $1.2 million went toward purchasing media buys on TV, print, digital and billboards in the targeted communities.
Friday evening, moments after a quick mention on the weekly radio show, Cinema Scope (101.1 Santa Fe/simulcast on the web) touched on some local concerns around the disconnect between New Mexico State Tourism and the State Film Industry, confirmations of the out of state marketing firm awarded the $2M New Mexico contract having recently hired a San Francisco production company to trek-in and film tourism spots poured in.
IATSE 480 Business Director, Jon Hendry tells OHI exclusively:
(IATSE 480 – New Mexico chapter of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees)
“I’m disappointed that the New Mexico Tourism department chose to go with a California based production company to shoot their most recent commercial. The Department often points to their limited budget yet spends considerably more than they needed to transporting an entire crew from out of State. They brought in equipment we have readily available here and even shipped in Wardrobe for New Mexicans, no doubt so they could look “authentic”. The two local hires [on the production] were the Craft service person and the driver.
To add insult to injury the New Mexican based talent were the lowest paid people on the shoot, working for flats with no residuals. And by coincidence the weather on the shoot days were [un]typically blustery spring days with complete overcast when they were shooting the Santa Fe Plaza. A local crew would have called a weather day but when you’ve transported everyone a long way then that’s not possible. They can hardly have showed NM in its best light.
The main problem is this; We in the Industry have not convinced our own Tourism Department that there’s better, cheaper and more committed resources right here in the State. More troubling, our Film Office who evidently were aware of this and did not intercede apparently feel the same or how could this occur? If they are not our advocates who is?” -Jon Hendry
After the recent shoots, Hendry furthermore extended his apologies to New Mexico production companies vowing to work harder than ever going forward to close gaps between state agencies and state film workers.
Multiple, highly qualified in-state production houses are known to have made considerable efforts to submit for work on the New Mexico State Tourism ad campaign. One local production house confirmed to industry advocates that their firm worked diligently, over several months attempting to be considered for production work on the local tourism shoot.
Repeated contact, including at least one promising exchange with the Texas based company hired to execute the ad campaign, [pen]ultimately led to the New Mexico company being simply ignored – that is until the visiting crew hired was on location here in NM, when it is reported that the California producers called-in for advice on how to shoot a particular way, while the aforementioned regional weather issues griped the production.
Based on such accounts, what we can so far come to expect from the forthcoming campaign is an overcast Santa Fe Plaza and a wind ravaged Sandia Peak. At least it looks like the Kayak shoot was a success. New Mexico Kayak Instruction, Inc. (NMKI) posted on their blog all about the very positive experience of their water sport segment of the campaign shoot.
“Yesterday was my first experience working with the New Mexico Film industry,” NMKI’s Kelly Gossett wrote of the filming. Kayaks yes, NMFilm not so much. Click here for the full account on how at least one New Mexico based company was featured thus far in this out of state, out of pocket ad campaign.
While the average annual household income in NM is $43,000, the Governor Martinez Administration appointed Jacobson household weighs in at a hefty $204,000.
Nice work if you can get it. Especially for two young people whose combined work experience equals just over 12 years…most especially convenient for Mr. Jacobson who, according to his Linkedin resume hadn’t worked in five years prior to landing the original, “highly complex” political appointment last July.
It seems that Cabinet Secretary Jacobson’s husband’s glass slipper has turned to brass (a brass ring that is), as he has landed the position of Director of Finance Policy in the New Mexico Department of Finance & Administration.
Though not yet listed on the department website directory of the board, the Office of the Governor’s 2012 Financial Disclosure documents and The Sunshine Portal NM both show a hire date of December 2011 for Andrew Jacobson, just about the time Mr. Jacobson’s plum “Temp Job” was to wrap-up.
For the full article click through here, where you’ll come to find the following gems:
“His wife’s Cabinet position didn’t and shouldn’t have any bearing on his being hired,” said Finance and Administration Secretary Tom Clifford.
“Andrew was the only qualified applicant for a highly complex position and thus the only person interviewed,” he said. “He agreed to take the job knowing it didn’t include benefits and that it would expire by the end of the year.”
The budget division that employs Jacobson is tasked with preparing the governor’s annual budget recommendation to the Legislature. Specifically, Jacobson’s job duties include analyzing state projects and other components of the $5.6 billion budget, Clifford said.
As we told you here back in August, the NM Governess appointed State Tourism Secretary, Monique Jacobson had put out the call for marketing proposals to help re-brand the state in the collective side-eyes of the nation nay, the world.
The Wall Street Journal recently reported a New Mexico State Tourism Department study finds that much of the nation sees New Mexico as “Arid.” “Barren.” “Dull”, and on the ~upside “Close to Arizona”? At least that perception places NM in the continental United States, right?
Ms. Jacobson, tells TWJ that she’s confident she can leverage her limited resources to build “a strong, iconic brand.” Not included in the article is the recent development that those “limited resources” of $2.5M has been awarded by the New Mexico State Tourism Department to a TEXAS firm.
Despite submissions by no less than six New Mexico firms for the job, our bottom barrel, 36th ranked national tourism standings (formerly run by a Los Angeles, CA firm), and state tourism marketing dollars are headed out of state.