The State of Maryland, through the Maryland Marketing Partnership, has launched a new economic development marketing campaign that positions the state as the ideal place to start, locate, and grow a business. The “Open for Business” campaign debuted with ad placements throughout BWI Thurgood Marshall Airport, the busiest airport in the region, and during a keynote presentation during the recent Mid-Atlantic Marketing Summit in Baltimore.
“Our administration has made economic development and job creation a top priority, and we have been delivering on our promise to turn Maryland’s economy around from day one,” said Governor Larry Hogan in a press release announcing the campaign. “We have created over 127,000 jobs, and the unemployment rate is now at its lowest level in a decade. Maryland’s gathering economic momentum is an incredible and compelling story. This exciting campaign gives us the opportunity to share our successes with the broad business community and attract even more companies and jobs to our state. Maryland is Open for Business – and it’s going to stay that way.”
“Since the start of this administration, Governor Hogan has been committed to making Maryland the most business-friendly state in the country,” said Secretary of Commerce Mike Gill, who serves as chairman of the partnership. “The ‘Open for Business’ campaign packages Maryland’s tremendous assets to drive new jobs and economic growth right here.”
In addition to placements like the one at BWI, the marketing campaign will feature a mix of digital, print, and radio advertising. The ads are being placed both within Maryland and outside the state in key markets and industries targeted for business development such as cybersecurity, life sciences, financial services, and advanced manufacturing.
Rockville-based agency HZDG developed the creative execution, featuring the words “open for business” emerging from images common in certain industries. For example, networking wires spell out “open for business” in an ad for cybersecurity and information technology audiences, and “open for business” appears within a series of genetic code, representing biohealth and life sciences.
Presenting the campaign during the Mid-Atlantic Marketing Summit were Allison Skipper Mayer, APR, Managing Director, Marketing & Communications, Maryland Department of Commerce; Ron Thompson, VP + Creative Director, HZ; and Katie Hooper, VP of Strategy + Managing Director, HZ Baltimore Office.
The Maryland Marketing Partnership was created through legislation reorganizing the Maryland Department of Commerce that was passed by the legislature during the 2015 session and was signed into law by Governor Hogan. The public-private organization is overseen by a 17-member board of directors with diverse expertise in business, economic development, and marketing. To date, the organization has recruited 18 private businesses as partners, which have committed funds and resources to support the marketing effort. Laura Van Eperen, CEO of Van Eperen, a Capitol Communicator sponsor, is a member of the board of directors.
The BWI placement will continue through the beginning of December and has the potential to reach many of the 25 million passengers that use the airport each year.