'Stronger than the Storm' ad campaign - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Superstorm Sandy

'Stronger than the Storm' ad campaign

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NEW JERSEY (MYFOXNY.COM) -

More than 70 percent of New Jersey residents have seen or heard the state's "Stronger than the Storm" advertising campaign, according to a new Rutgers-Eagleton poll. It also found the campaign appears to be making some difference in encouraging summer tourism.

The song in those commercials is definitely hard to forget for many people. It's a catchy campaign, taking over the air and radio waves in New Jersey and the tri-state area.

The unforgettable "Stronger than the Storm" ads started running before Memorial Day. The goal is to let people know that despite Hurricane Sandy, the Jersey Shore is open for business this summer

Ken Musto, creative director at Brushfire Marketing Communications in Cedar Knolls, N.J., said he and a colleague came up with the slogan while grabbing a bite to eat and scribbled it down on a napkin at the restaurant.

CEO John Leonardi said the team had five days to come up with an ad proposal, then once they won the contract, only about three and a half weeks to execute the entire campaign, including radio and TV spots, billboards, and digital. A project like that would typically take four to six months, he said.

Musto said a big part of helping to get the message out there was writing the anthem, which became that catchy song that many people now can't get out of their heads. They came up with the lyrics and had a composer write the music.

The company is thrilled with the campaign's success and the opportunity to help their home state.

But some have criticized Gov. Chris Christie for appearing in these taxpayer funded ads during his re-election campaign.

Brushfire's Leonardi said it was the company's idea to have him and his family in the ads because Christie played such a huge role during Sandy.

The ads run through Labor Day.

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