Jun 22, 2022 - News

New tourism slogan is flush with potential

Chicago skyline

Photo courtesy of Choose Chicago

If tourism officials wanted to get people talking about their new slogan, "When You Go You Know," they have succeeded brilliantly.

The intrigue: Most of the response — at least on our social media — is focused on what seems like a bathroom joke, with the yellow-tinted "GO" hovering above Lake Michigan.

What they're saying: "With the campaign, we are illustrating the emotional and transformative impact our city can have on visitors," the CEO of Choose Chicago told the Tribune.

  • As for the urine implication, a spokesperson said it was not intentional but that tourism officials have seen the jokes. "We appreciate everyone's good humor ... there's a reason why Chicago has such a great comedy scene."

Of note: The city recently announced some seriously good tourism news.

  • We hosted 30.7 million visitors in 2021, an 86% increase over 2020.
  • Tourism-related employment returned to 60% of pre-pandemic levels, generating $1.3 billion in 2021 tax revenue.
  • Local hotel tax revenue reached $127.2 million, a 163% increase over 2020, and the average occupancy rate was 43%, a 63% increase.

Quick takes: Here's what our social media followers have to say about the new slogan:

  • Shane M.: "No. 1? I thought we were the No. 2 city."
  • Erika C.: "It should be, 'When you know, you GO.'"
  • Tom M.: "Chicago: When ya gotta go, ya gotta go."
  • Kevin W.: "The agency was certainly a whiz at slogans."
  • Jean I.: "The typography used for 'Chicago' is interesting. But the slogan is a wee bit bland."
  • JW4Progress: "You know urine Chicago when urine an 'L' train."
  • Brian C.: "Chicago: When You Need to Do No. 1."
  • Russ K.: "'Poop in the Loop' is sure to follow."
  • J.B.: "Oh no, why would they choose yellow :("
  • Mary R.: "I'm not a fan of the campaign at all. I want to know how much $$$ was spent on this. It's better than the 'Chicago Not in Chicago' — but barely. Come on, Chicago leaders. This is juvenile."
  • Ti-Jah: "Dear Dave Matthews Band, how do we begin?"
  • Mark L.: "Urine for a treat when you visit."
  • William H.: "Chicago may be an American city, but they sound more like European."
  • Mike P.: "How about, 'Enjoy the Go!'"

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