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Associated Press, Published January 06 2010

North Dakota tourism campaign seeks photos, videos

BISMARCK – Aside from spending $2 million on broadcast, print and Internet advertising, North Dakota’s new tourism promotion campaign will seek photos, videos and reviews from visitors themselves, the state’s tourism director says.

Sara Otte Coleman called the effort another step in developing North Dakota’s “I Am Legendary” tourism theme, which this year will feature an “RULegendary” Web site with links to YouTube and social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook.

“We’re trying to get more ... user-driven content on the site, and allow people to have an easy way to post videos, post some photos, blog their stories and tell us about their North Dakota adventures,” Coleman said.

The campaign will target people in Montana, South Dakota, Minnesota and Wisconsin, as well as North Dakota’s two Canadian border neighbors, the provinces of Saskatchewan and Manitoba. A majority of the ad spending will go to television ads, including two that target Canadians and outdoors enthusiasts.

Coleman says this year’s campaign will ask visitors to stop by the “RULegendary” Web site to contribute reviews and videos of their North Dakota experiences.

There has been a surge in demand for the agency’s hunting and fishing guide; the number of copies printed has been increased from 50,000 to 70,000, she said.

An assortment of print advertisements will be aimed at golfers, bird watchers and other niche markets, Coleman said.

“We can compete with national golf courses,” Coleman said. “We know that we’re a birding destination. We’ve got some of the best birding in the country.”

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