The state’s first-ever advertising campaign to attract and retain Wisconsin workers launched this week, with ads of all shapes and sizes peppering the Chicago area.

The $1 million price tag for the campaign is coming out of WEDC’s fiscal year 2018 budget, covering paid advertisements in a variety of channels. These ads highlight specific advantages of living in Wisconsin compared to a bigger metro area, such as shorter commute times, lower taxes and lower rents.

Tricia Braun, COO of the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation, says momentum has been building for this campaign for about two years.

“We had been hearing as an agency from all of our partners, businesses that we work with, etc., that talent is increasingly the number one issue for Wisconsin,” she told “Looking at what we could do to market Wisconsin to out-of-state workers, the reality was there was a large lack of perception or misperception on the types of opportunities that Wisconsin offered.”

She says the effort to draw Wisconsin alumni and millennials from out-of-state will reframe the narrative by showcasing opportunities for careers and for personal fulfillment.

Ads will take the form of targeted social media posts, streaming video and audio ads, mobile app pop-ups, banners on trains, backlit billboards in downtown health clubs and branded coasters in restaurants and bars.

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