In a New York Times article covering the awarding of the Super Bowl, I had noticed that they surprisingly used a photo showing OUR governor, instead of Bloomberg or Paterson – yet the article constantly says about New York hosting the Super Bowl.Â Also – the only time New Jersey is mentioned is when it is prefixed with New York,Â yet New York is repeatedly mentioned by itself.
I am hoping that Christie will be strong – which I think he will be (he seems to be a true, proud New Jerseyan) – and not let New Jersey take a backseat to New York.Â What the NFL will most likely do I am afraid – now that the bid has be awarded – is attempt to dimension the marketing and mentioning of New Jersey in favor of presenting it as a New York event.Â However, we have the stadium, WE are hosting the main event.Â They can NOT have a Super Bowl without the stadium and New York does not have one. To have a successful event the NFL has to keep New Jersey in the game. Also, we can NOTÂ allow it to turn into a game of keep away either – with us in the middle trying to catch the marketing ball, as the NFL and New York throw it back and forth over our heads.
The key reason for hosting these major international events is not for the one shot in the arm benefits of the hotel guests coming to the event, but instead to promote the area to the MUCH GREATER audience who are watching it on their couches at home.Â These events are a way of saying to millions and millions of people – “See how great we are.Â Come visit us”.Â The thing is – the TV audience will be seeing New JERSEY’s stadium on TV, not New York’s. They will be seeing OUR Meadowlands. The Super Bowl will be held in New JERSEY. This is a great opportunity to promote New Jersey to a world wide audience.
The Olympics for instance, particularly the Opening Ceremony, is just one gigantic tourism commercial.Â I am just hoping that New Jersey will not let this opportunity slip away and that we will not once again be ignored and pushed into the shadows as a New JERSEY attraction is used for a major event, while New York gets all the marketing and credit.Â This is what happened to the Live Earth Day Concerts – where they even listed the Meadowlands on their marketing material and website as taking place in “Meadowlands NY”. However, enough New Jerseyans, including many of the New Jersey performers such as Zach Braff and even Corzine, made such as stink about it – that it was picked up by the international media. All of a sudden the story wasn’t about the event itself, but instead about it being in New Jersey. Many media outlets, including even the BBC, started calling it “Live Earth New Jersey” – instead of “Live Earth New York” the way it was promoted by the marketers.
I do see some very positive changes on this front, yet New Jersey still is fighting an uphill battle for being heard and getting OUR image and message out there. We get saddled with the negative comments from the late nigh talk show hosts, Saturday Night Live, the many derogatory comments that are made about NJ in movies and TV. It is IMPERATIVE that New JERSEY is allowed to take advantage of these great world wide media events that take place in OUR state so we can showcase the TRUE New Jersey. We have to get control of our image and stop letting the outside world, particularly NY, define us.