The High cost of hype.

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OuterBanker
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The High cost of hype.

#1 Postby OuterBanker » Mon Feb 01, 2021 1:56 pm

I guess it is just a sign of the times. With network news, cable weather and countless internet sites the need to grab customers is always at the top. The more drama, the more customers. Consequently, the need for the most drama does not always create the most balanced reporting. Also, the effect it has on the areas affected does not seem to come to play. Once the event is over, so is the reporting. Those of us who live in areas that are dependent on tourism can attest to that. If a storm is even mentioned as heading your way, it can devastate the economy. If a hurricane does strike the coverage is always on the damage and devastation, never does it cover the areas that aren’t damaged.

Never has this been more evident than 2020 on the Outer Banks. The lack of hype has produced one of the best seasons we have ever had. The Outer Banks occupancy rate for the 2020 season was 100% through the end of October. Real estate went through the roof and there is still a backlog of closings.

The reason for this was two-fold. The total lack of coverage of any storm and the worldwide cat 5 called Covid-19. Large east cost metro areas headed for the Outer Banks. It was almost like we were a shelter for COVID-19. I remember listening to a national sports program where one of the hosts had just returned from the Outer Banks stating as if nothing had ever happened here as far as COVID-19 was concerned. No one could go overseas, cruising, etc. Real estate went through the roof. New Yorkers were now working from home instead of their NY office. Thinking why am I working in my 5k a month two bedroom apt when I could work from home on the Outer Banks for less.

I do wonder what will happen when all these new residents live through their first hurricane.
2020 was my 46th year here.
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Re: The High cost of hype.

#2 Postby tolakram » Mon Feb 01, 2021 5:10 pm

I'm never sure how to react to these kinds of post. What is hype, can you define it? If hype is simply forecast uncertainty then I'm not sure what solution you're looking for.

Someone who has lived through numerous storms and knows what to do is going to view storm coverage very differently from a newcomer to the area.
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Re: The High cost of hype.

#3 Postby chaser1 » Thu Feb 04, 2021 11:31 am

OuterBanker wrote:I guess it is just a sign of the times. With network news, cable weather and countless internet sites the need to grab customers is always at the top. The more drama, the more customers. Consequently, the need for the most drama does not always create the most balanced reporting. Also, the effect it has on the areas affected does not seem to come to play. Once the event is over, so is the reporting. Those of us who live in areas that are dependent on tourism can attest to that. If a storm is even mentioned as heading your way, it can devastate the economy. If a hurricane does strike the coverage is always on the damage and devastation, never does it cover the areas that aren’t damaged.

Never has this been more evident than 2020 on the Outer Banks. The lack of hype has produced one of the best seasons we have ever had. The Outer Banks occupancy rate for the 2020 season was 100% through the end of October. Real estate went through the roof and there is still a backlog of closings.

The reason for this was two-fold. The total lack of coverage of any storm and the worldwide cat 5 called Covid-19. Large east cost metro areas headed for the Outer Banks. It was almost like we were a shelter for COVID-19. I remember listening to a national sports program where one of the hosts had just returned from the Outer Banks stating as if nothing had ever happened here as far as COVID-19 was concerned. No one could go overseas, cruising, etc. Real estate went through the roof. New Yorkers were now working from home instead of their NY office. Thinking why am I working in my 5k a month two bedroom apt when I could work from home on the Outer Banks for less.

I do wonder what will happen when all these new residents live through their first hurricane.
2020 was my 46th year here.


No offense but I'm not sure what the point was. I speak with customers every single day that cannot afford to pay their bills due to lost jobs or decreased income as a result of Covid-19. I highly doubt that any of those folks vacationed or bought property in the Outer Banks, where the average median closing in 2020 was well over $400K. Cleary those with the discretionary income seeking a far lower population density descended to the Outer Banks or other "out of the way" destinations where they might be less affected by Covid related lock-downs. That economic boon and influx of excited investors likely did not occur to New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina, S. Miami-Dade County following Hurricane Andrew, or towns affected by Mt. St. Helens in 1980. What will happen to those new residents who recently moved to the Outer Banks following a significant hurricane impact? Depends whether they evacuated, survived, and still have a home (or at least insurance). I suspect some will move and some might stay but the vacation industry will likely take a hit for some time and it won't be as a result of media.

If the primary concern is whether those who could afford an Outer Banks family vacation or potential property investors will be scared off by a glancing blow or direct hurricane impact in 2021, I suggest the local chamber of commerce start a slush fund now for that ad campaign following each hurricane threat or impact suggesting either "..... the Outer Banks are still here, please excuse the ongoing clean-up, construction, and relentless hum of generators" OR "We dodged a bullet, the Outer Banks is still here and don't even worry about Covid-19". Either message will fall on deaf ears to those barely affording food or rent but there will be those others grappling with the difficult decisions whether to spend time in the Hamptons, Banff, or spot along the Florida coastline next fall.
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