A new campaign targeting cashed-up tourists from Asia has been announced at Australia’s top tourism conference in Canberra.
Tourism Australia unveiled plans on Thursday for a new campaign including digital and online marketing aimed directly at big spending Asian travellers, especially from China and India.
The Australian Tourism Directions Conference was also told a 10 year strategic plan would be drawn up to attract wealthy middle-class holiday makers from India.
Tourism Australia chairman Geoff Dixon told delegates the challenge was to send a unified image of what’s on offer “down under”.
“I believe our current marketing … particularly in the digital and social media spaces, is working outstandingly well for the industry,” he said.
“Australia is a five star, must-see destination with some of the world’s best natural and man-made attractions.
“Tourism Australia is unashamedly going to target the high-yield traveller in a new multi-faceted campaign now under planning for release in 2012.
“In the past our marketing has been far more generic and this will continue, but alongside a message of high quality and unsurpassed natural beauty.”
Mr Dixon said the campaign would highlight world best attractions in Australia including luxury lodges, hotels and facilities, food and wine and natural wonders, but the message would have to be uncluttered and clear.
He said Tourism Australia had been told in no uncertain terms during recent trips to China and India that Australia spoke with too many voices.
“Tourism Australia, the states and territories, airlines and private business all have legitimate messages but finite resources to spend in what is increasingly a cluttered market,” he said.
“I strongly believe we would be better heard, particularly in Asia, with a clarity of marketing message through the one voice, in which some of our great experiences would be better segmented and told, helping disperse our international visitors right around the country.”
Mr Dixon said there was already close co-operation between his body and the states, but that could be taken a step further to achieve better outcomes which would bring long term benefits to the industry.
Tourism Australia managing director Andrew McEvoy said the 10 year plan for India would focus on how to capitalise on what will be one of the world’s most massive outbound markets of 50 million travellers in the next decade.
“It’s the biggest English speaking country upon Earth,” he said.
“It’s a young audience, with 62 per cent of people under the age of 26. They are an adventurous growing middle class who want to put travel and destinations like Australia on life’s resume.”
Tourism Minister Martin Ferguson said it was essential for the industry to work together on its international marketing campaign.
“More strategic co-operation is more important than ever,” he told AAP.
“Team Australia domestically and internationally, but we’ll still have competition for business, sporting events etc. between states.
“I think that’s healthy for the industry and keeps every state and territory on its toes and means we’ve got people chasing business internationally.”