Published: Feb 14, 2013 12:27 AM EST
Updated: Feb 14, 2013 12:31 AM EST

COLLIER COUNTY, Fla - Winter gloves to golf gloves. Snow shoes to no shoes. That's the message behind a half a million dollar ad campaign out of Collier County aimed at getting more visitors from the snow to the sand. 

Dozens of billboards are currently sitting in the New York subway. In Chicago, eight billboards are strategically placed throughout the city. Each one features a digital thermometer displaying the real time temps of Chicago and Naples. 

"The first time you leave piles of snow and biting cold and windchill and then you get off the plane and see your first palm tree, I think you'll be sold," says Monty Mertz, visiting from Fargo North Dakota with his wife. 

This winter advertising push is targeting first time visitors with the hope they'll turn into regulars like Karl Pacini of Chicago.

"We fell in love with Naples the first time we came and there's no reason to look anywhere else. You find a place you like and you keep coming back," says Pacini. 

The Naples, Marco Island and Everglades Convention and Visitors Bureau is using 30 second TV commercials, newspaper ads and social media. They want images of warmth and relaxation to resonate with northerners and help them escape to the Paradise Coast. 

"Especially now with all the snow and slush and the cold and getting up in the morning scraping your car. To be down here and the sun is up at 6:00 and it stays up all day, it's unbelievable," says Pacini. 

The campaign is paid for with tourist tax dollars and will continue running up north until mid March.