by ABC6 Chief Political Reporter Mark Curtis
The song in the TV ad says, "Stay in Warwick, See Rhode Island".
This television ad, touting Warwick as a tourist destination is now airing in the Boston TV market.
Yes, that's right - Warwick as a regional tourist spot.
Mayor Scott Avedisian says, "You're only 25 or 30 minutes from Newport. The hotel rates are not as high as they would be in Newport. The occupancy is better; you can probably book a room easier here."
The mayor says Warwick has 39 miles of coastline; great restaurants; and central travel for tourists going further.
ABC6 Chief Political Reporter Mark Curtis said, "Now some Warwick taxpayers might be upset that the City is spending $20 thousand dollars on this campaign, but guess what? Taxpayers aren't footing the bill. It's all being paid for through the hotel visitor tax."
We had a public relations professor review the ads, and he wonders whether the budget is big enough.
Professor Kay Israel of Rhode Island College said, "There's an old axiom in advertising that used to say that in order to have an effective commercial it had to have at least 5 impressions, or being seen 5 times. With $20 thousand dollars it's hard to believe any individual is going to have 5 impressions. "
But the city believes the campaign is working.
"We had 70 percent of our hotel nights booked in May. High above the state average; and high above the national average."
After the summer Warwick will evaluate whether to buy more ads next year.