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State launches talent attraction ad campaign

Governor Whitmer unveils new program and logo for talent attraction program
State of Michigan
Governor Whitmer unveils new logo for talent attraction initiative

The state has launched a new marketing campaign aimed at bringing more workers into Michigan and reversing decades of sluggish growth.

The "You Can in Michigan" campaign features a combination of TV, radio, print and digital ads highlighting the state’s work and recreation opportunities.

It’s the latest addition to a handful of multistate marketing campaigns, that include Pure Michigan and Pure Opportunity.

Michelle Grinnell, senior vice president of marketing communications with the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, said each of the promotions complement one another.

“The story we are really trying to tell is the story of Michigan. And those are components of that. And so, together, laid over each other, we are able to tell a really holistic story about the opportunity that exists for all people here in our state,” Grinnell said during a press conference Tuesday.

Officials said the state plans on airing the "You Can in Michigan" ads in 10 states and Washington D.C. They said they hope to reach places where there are existing talent pools for tech and other future-oriented jobs.

A press release that accompanied the announcement said there’s $20 million in the state budget for the campaign over its first two years to cover production and development.

Not all reception to the campaign has been warm, however. Representative Mark Tisdel (R-Rochester Hills) said the state should focus on lowering taxes and backing off a clean energy plan if it hopes to attract more people.

“If Michigan is serious about growth, we have to address the root causes of our current population decline, starting by making our state more affordable for families and job providers,” Tisdel said in a press release.

The comments echo recommendations made last month by the West Michigan Policy Forum.

During Tuesday’s announcement press conference, Zach Gorchow of the Gongwer News Service, asked Governor Gretchen Whitmer about the critique.

Governor Gretchen Whitmer addressed them by saying the state has had a strong track record with past campaigns, like Pure Michigan.

“These efforts to talk about the business climate, to talk about the talent to lure great talented people to Michigan or keep our talent here in Michigan are all components to making sure we’ve got an economy that grows and thrives,” Whitmer said.

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