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Resident and Visitors Helped Shape New State Brand Through Stories
of Inspiration, Innovation, Community and Adventure

Hartford, CT (July 12, 2012) -  After three months, hundreds of submissions and 58,000 votes, residents and visitors selected Sally Roberts’s story titled, “CT River Journey, 100 Miles in 3 Days,” as their favorite Connecticut Story in the state’s What’s Your Connecticut Story campaign. Sally’s story received nearly 5,500 votes, putting her in the number one spot to take home the $1,000 Connecticut shopping spree grand prize.  

The What's Your Connecticut Story contest launched in late February as part of a $27 million

 two-year marketing effort to help create the new Connecticut brand identity. The contest asked residents and visitors to share what they loved most about living, working and playing in Connecticut. Submitted stories were then used to help inform the direction of the overarching state brand, still revolutionary. 

"Through our brand exploration and research in developing still revolutionary, we learned that the unique experience Connecticut offers both residents and visitors alike is one of inspiration, and these stories reinforced that" said Christopher “Kip” Bergstrom, Deputy Commissioner of the state Department of Economic and Community Development. "Connecticut is a state of intimate places and hidden gems that inspire people, and we were inspired by how beautifully the entrants captured that sentiment. The fact that the contest was shared more than 375,000 times across various social media channels alone demonstrates how highly engaged residents and visitors were with this campaign.” 

In addition to Sally’s story, three additional entrants - Christi Papa (Wallingford), Jaleith Gary (Hartford) and Paula Cornell (West Hartford) - were chosen as “CT Picks” by selection committee from Connecticut's Department of Economic and Community Development and Office of Tourism.  

Christi Papa’s story, “Money Saving Mommy-2 little girls,” showcased how on a tight budget, a sense of adventure and Connecticut’s hidden gems can lead to life-long memories. Jaleith Gary’s submission, “A Change of Heart,” talked about Hartford as the perfect place for someone to start anew, while Paula Cornell relived her childhood escapades of ice skating in Elizabeth Park. Each “CT Picks” winner will receive a prize pack featuring uniquely Connecticut products and experiences. 

“I feel honored to be chosen amongst all the other amazing stories and hope that the program encourages others to go out and explore Connecticut and build their own memories,” said Sally. “I will remember those three days on the Connecticut River for the rest of my life. It was not only an incredibly validating personal accomplishment, but allowed my love and appreciation of Connecticut and its beauty to grow even more.” 

The new still revolutionary campaign has continued to drive interest and awareness about Connecticut events, activities, exhibits and destinations since launch earlier this spring. Connecticut tourism destinations such as Mystic Seaport, Mystic Aquarium, Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo, Goodspeed Opera House, EMPOWER Zip lines and more have reported an increase in visitation and ticket sales in the first and second quarter over the same period in 2011, with projections and outlook positive for the months to come. CTvisit.com has seen an 80% increase in site visitation. Still revolutionary ads have been viewed more than 178,000 times on YouTube and through the strategic media buy have reached our target consumer more than 200MM times with campaign messaging. More than 103,000 people are fans of the Visit Connecticut Facebook page. 

To read all the stories submitted visit http://myconnecticutstory.com or if you’re interested in making your own Connecticut story, check out www.CTvisit.com for ideas and inspiration.

For Immediate Release: July 12, 2012





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