Nebraska’s New Slogan Is The Kind Of Honesty We All Need

Should each state start making self-deprecating advertisements?

Corn shadows shot in Nebraska
Nebraska Tourism Commission

Should each state start making self-deprecating advertisements?

According the The Washington Post, Nebraska is desperate to increase their tourism. “For four consecutive years, it’s come in dead last on a list of states that tourists are interested in visiting.”

So what did they decide on for their new slogan? “Honestly, it’s not for everyone.”

This appears to be Nebraska’s way of playing along with what their critics are saying. They admit that while Nebraska may not be on the top of everyone’s list, or, frankly, even in the middle, the state does have a lot to offer for those that want to explore it.

Nebraska has an excellent art and music scene, as well as a growing food and restaurant culture. However, outsiders view Nebraska “as a really long cornfield they have to drive through to reach the Rockies.”

So, the campaign plays on those who believe in a “yeah, right,” sort of way. Each ad, which will officially get revealed next year, is accompanied with an image and a few words. One image is of people floating along a serene, beautiful body of water with the tag: “Lucky for you, there’s nothing to do here.”

Nebraskans are not too fond of the new campaign, though. Residents of the state think that it underplays Nebraska’s rich history and beauty, and that other tactics could have perhaps shined a better light on their state, while also bringing in tourists.

One Nebraska native said, “‘I just don’t think the best way to pitch ourselves is calling out stereotypes about ourselves.'” His background in branding and marketing leads him to believe that another route, one that highlights all that Nebraska has to offer in a non-self-deprecating way, would have more success.

Many other critics are frustrated that Nebraska decided to work with a Colorado agency rather than one in their home state.

A producer at 1011 News in Lincoln, Nebraska took to Twitter to add comedic options for the new campaign. One of them read: “‘Nebraska: Typhoid Free since ’87!'” Another was, “Nebraska: Your exes probably don’t live here!”

Not everyone has something bad to say about the slogan. Many people are praising Nebraska for their honesty and realness. The true effectiveness will have to await judgment until the early spring of 2019 when the campaign is officially released and will begin running. But it is already creating more buzz than the last slogan: “‘Visit Nebraska. Visit Nice,” which was a mostly-agreed upon bust.