New ‘In Utah’ Campaign Aimed at Wellness and Economic Reactivation

Pete CodellaNews

To encourage wellness and foster economic growth and support of Utah businesses, today, the Utah Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED) launched a public information and education campaign.

The campaign is in response to the Utah Legislature’s 4th 2020 special session (H.B. 4001), in which it requested a campaign to support the reactivation of Utah’s economy, and the 5th special session (H.B. 5010), in which the Legislature asked for a public information campaign to encourage healthy activity during the COVID-19 pandemic, such as following current CDC, state, and local health guidelines, and not forgoing other preventive or urgent medical care.

After completing a state procurement request for a proposal, GOED selected a campaign called ‘In Utah,’ prepared by Salt Lake City-based RUMOR Advertising, to address Utahns’ health and wellness and encourage economic growth. The campaign works in tandem with the state’s existing efforts and supports all economic development initiatives across Utah’s varied industries.

‘In Utah’ is focused on economic reactivation efforts as the state navigates the COVID-19 pandemic and the phases outlined in its Utah Leads Together plan.

“We’re fortunate to live in a state where volunteerism, community support and service provide positive examples to the rest of the country,” said Val Hale, GOED’s executive director. “We’re working to foster a collaborative environment where a rising economic tide will lift all boats — where incremental improvements in Utah’s economy help us achieve our hopes and dreams. This is our opportunity to lead by example and even reshape Utah’s future in exciting, innovative ways.”

‘In Utah’ encourages Utahns to embrace healthy habits while practicing appropriate measures to slow the spread of COVID-19. It also encourages Utahns to shop, dine, stay, work, film and play, ‘In Utah.’ It’s a collaborative, adaptable outreach campaign that includes various industries and interests. The multimedia campaign will launch with a website ( and social media platforms. Campaign materials will be available in English and Spanish.

After being presented to Gov. Herbert last month, the initiative was introduced by GOED and its agency, RUMOR Advertising, in a partners kick-off meeting last week. Utah municipalities, associations, organizations, celebrities, athletes, teams, nonprofits and businesses can join the effort and show their support for a healthy Utah, from both wellness and economic perspectives, by:

  • Partnering to create a unique ‘In Utah’ badge,
  • Displaying ‘In Utah’ signage in physical and online locations
  • Sponsoring promotions and giveaways, and
  • Ordering and distributing or selling ‘In Utah’ promotional items.

A plethora of ‘In Utah’ partnerships are possible.

“We’re thrilled the state saw value in our clear, concise and positive ‘In Utah’ campaign,” said Shane O’Toole, founder and CEO of RUMOR Advertising, a 23-year-old Utah ad agency. “Our team has been hard at work for several weeks developing creative concepts we believe will help shape public attitudes and behaviors. We appreciate the trust placed in us and vow to use the CARES Act monies allocated for the campaign carefully.”

On April 23, 2020, the Legislature passed H.B. 4001, and Gov. Herbert signed the bill into law on April 28, affirming the legislative appropriation and setting the wheels in motion for this vital effort. Since then, the GOED team, with support from many other state agencies and groups, has worked to prepare and launch the new economic reactivation campaign with input from dozens of partners across the state.

With the June 29 passage of H.B. 5010, GOED incorporated two additional outreach efforts into its contract with RUMOR Advertising, ‘Healthy In Utah,’ and ‘Learn & Work In Utah.’ RUMOR’s contract for the three initiatives totals $2.1 million and goes through the end of the year.

Utahns, Utah businesses and organizations are encouraged to support the effort in their communications and actions. Together, Utah will demonstrate what it means to live, work and recreate ‘In Utah.’

Business Elevated Podcast

Listen to Pete Codella, director of marketing and communications at the Utah Governor’s Office of Economic Development, and Tyler Sohm, vice president and executive creative director at Rumor Advertising. Listen here.