Encourage all kinds of people from around the world to spend their vacation dollars in America.
The challenges are monumental:
- A product with millions of attributes
- A target audience that is wildly fragmented with attitudes that run the gamut from love to hate
- A government committee looking over your shoulder as you create this campaign
- The multi-billion dollar travel industry chiming in from every corner with its two cents
It's not a bad effort. But it's not a great one either.
"Land of dreams" is a wonderful way to describe the U.S. It's a tag that elegantly captures what our country is and has always been (when we're at our best). The other thing I like is that it allows the viewer to personalize the spot. My dream is different from your dream.
But it descends quickly into mediocrity from there.
The spot is so crammed full of disparate (albeit beautiful) imagery that it seems to say, "We're not sure what it is, but your dream is probably in here somewhere." This is the challenge that comes from trying to offer something to everyone.
The music is nice and hummable. Roseanne Cash is a pro and you can't go wrong having her pen your campaign's anthem, but from an overall concept standpoint, there's nothing new here. Toss a Cruze, Corvette, Camaro and Silverado into the mix then change the soundtrack to "Heartbeat of America" and it's 1985 all over again.
Will this convince people to travel to the U.S.? It won't hurt. Just getting a message out there is better than we've been doing, which is nothing.
Ultimately, the campaign will be successful when it's not from us, but the people who visit us. I hope the effort evolves to contain elements that allow people who've come to America to share how their vacation fulfilled their dreams.
Until then, this spot – this product of a very tough assignment – represents us well.