VISIT Milwaukee is proud to kick off its 2023 marketing efforts with a 35 x 23-ft. billboard in New York City’s Times Square that capitalizes on National Geographic naming Milwaukee to its “Best of the World” list as one of the best destinations for travel in 2023 -- one of only 25 such destinations. Through a 15-second video that will run four times every hour, this billboard, located at 1540 Broadway, will introduce Milwaukee’s stunning lakefront, James Beard award-winning cuisine and diverse attractions to tens of millions of viewers. The billboard will run from December 26 through January 1 and live attendees of Times Square’s New Year’s Eve celebration will be in close approximation to the billboard.  

“Milwaukee’s incredible moment in the spotlight thanks to publications like National Geographic is monumental, but we want to keep that momentum building through 2024,” said Josh Albrecht, vice president of marketing and communications for VISIT Milwaukee. “What better way to do that than with a billboard in one of the busiest intersections in the world over New Year’s Eve?”  

This marketing initiative is just one of many that will increase awareness of Milwaukee in new markets and build on the momentum of a city adding new reasons to visit every day. Campaigns to entice leisure travelers will focus on metropolitan areas like Chicago, Minneapolis, and Des Moines. Other 2023 campaigns include:

  • “Good Things Brewing,” a four-episode television show that begins airing Feb. 23, 2023. In “Good Things Brewing,” host David Caruso takes viewers on an adventure through the community guided by eight extraordinary Milwaukeeans.  
  • An expanded partnership with Milwaukee Bucks star Bobby Portis, in addition to year-round influencer marketing. The campaign showcases Bobby’s love for Milwaukee as he acts as a “hype man” at attractions around the city, helping champion our city of champions.  
  • Continued promotion of the Milwaukee Theater District, which is designed to position Milwaukee’s live entertainment scene as the best in the nation. 

Many of these campaigns build on the success of 2022 campaigns that ultimately helped to bring more diverse travelers to the city and generated growth in out-of-state markets like Minneapolis. “In 2022, we tried a few new tactics, and they paid off in a big way,” Albrecht says. “Efforts like these helped to ensure that the economic benefit of tourism to Milwaukee increased in 2022 and will grow even more in the coming year.”  

These efforts would not come to life without the strategic guidance and input from VISIT Milwaukee’s board of directors, marketing committee and IDEA committee, which seeks to ensure that the tourism bureau is accurately representing the rich diversity of the community in all its campaigns. These efforts also incorporate the feedback of the community thanks to those who participated in the Destination Next survey and citizen survey process.  

VISIT Milwaukee encourages anyone in New York City for New Year’s Eve to capture and share the billboard across social channels and tag the @visitmilwaukee accounts or use #visitmke.