Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Promoting the Collective Jersey Shore

There's this group that is calling itself the Jersey Shore Convention and Visitors Bureau. Sounds good, right? Well, it only includes Ocean and Monmouth counties. Apparently, Atlantic and Cape May counties aren't part of the Jersey Shore.

I'm sick of this. I really am. Why does everyone fight each other? The Jersey Shore - all of it, from top to bottom - is the state's greatest tourism asset. It should all be promoted as one collective whole with a lot of cool and different things in every single shore town.

Instead, we have counties and townships trying to rip the Jersey Shore Tourism crown away from each other. And, yes, I'd say the same thing if just Atlantic and Cape May Counties were behind this CVB. Actually, I have come out against the whole "Jersey Cape" nonsense.

Here's an idea: Stop fighting. Stop seeing each other as competition. Work together to promote the entire Jersey Shore. If you do that and create one unified promotional message, you'll elevate everyone. Trying to tout just your county or whatever is short sighted, and is a missed opportunity.

Of course, someone would need to bring all these parties together to do this, and I don't have much faith in NJ Tourism. They're not even on twitter. Look what Philadelphia - a CITY - is doing there, and you'll see why I don't have much hope for the state's tourism agency to come in and do something about this problem.

Why the rant? I'm speaking on a New Jersey tourism conference next week, and I'm still figuring out what to say. I love New Jersey - obviously - but I hate to see people work against improving our state and the state's image to drive tourism.

Disclaimer: Yes, this blog is regional, but I don't deny the fact that other counties exist, and I write about them, too. I have a feature coming out next month about Asbury Park, and I've written many times about Sandy Hook, Long Branch, Ocean Grove, Belmar, LBI. It's not my speciality, but I don't try to say they're not the real Jersey Shore. They're part of the whole that make up this great area of our state.

I also don't think that morons at MTV has ruined the Jersey Shore image. The show is fading. Those nit wits were kicked out of NJ, and are reportedly being banned from places in Miami, where they're filming the next season. Here's a promise: I will throw a big blow out party the day one of those people goes bankrupt and/or does porn. Because that's the only place that can go.

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Unknown said...

Thanks for the shoutout to @VisitPhilly Jen! Your comments about regional tourism are interesting. My company (GPTMC)actually represents Philadelphia, Bucks, Chester, Delaware and Montgomery Counties (each of whom have their own tourism offices) but we have to recognize that a tourist does not care about county boundaries.

We would love for a visitor to spend a few nights in Philadephia then a few in the region, and vice versa.

Jen A. Miller said...

Caroline - Right. The more people know there is to do in the AREA, the more likely they are to visit. It's better to offer a herd than a one trick pony.

Jim said...

I agree. I've come to love the Jersey Shore a bit late in life after spending childhood summers in DE. I am endlessly fascinated by driving back and forth among the shore towns. Each one with it's own charm and character. It seems to me that all the towns coming together and promoting a Jersey Shore Tour would be an awesome idea.

Jen A. Miller said...

Jim - Agreed! Wouldn't that be great? How cool would it be to get a group of Wildwood regulars to head up to Asbury Park, or Cape May history fans to see the History House up in Sandy Hook?

Someone has to make these connections..

Ann Delaney said...

Jim has a great point- each shore town has its own character, and therefore attracts a unique visitor. So, we really aren't in direct competition with each other. Families who rent in Avalon are likely to ride down to Cape May for dinner; and up to Atlantic City to gamble. We should encourage these day trips between communities.

RDHolt said...

Jen, bad news. They're coming back.

Jen A. Miller said...

I heard. Why? Because no in Miami is letting them in.

I'm not going to get huffy about it because there is nothing I can do about it. Seaside and NJ Tourism failed the state, and the shore.

As I said before: They will end up bankrupt and/or doing porn. Me? Not so much.

Jen A. Miller said...

That, by the way, will be the last time it's mentioned on this site.