There's Nothing Like Australia (yawn) | BTalk


Matthew Hingerty

Matthew Hingerty

(Episode 472; 18 minutes 22) Tourism Australia, the government funded tourist promotion body, has launched a new campaign with the unimaginative tagline "There's Nothing Like Australia". It's a safer tack than recent campaigns, including Lara Bingle's "Where The Bloody Hell Are You?", too vulgar for some, and Baz Luhrmann's "Australia" campaign, viewed as too arty by many. Yet the tagline sounds like it's been picked off a shelf of hackneyed phrases and false promises.

So will it work? A bigger question in my mind is whether big brand campaigns are worth the expense. Whatever we spend it will be a drop in the vast ocean of advertising messages and isn't money better spent on driving more regular visits from those who already love the idea of coming here?

Whether it's through the work of Tourism Australia or not, 5.6 million people came to Australia in the 12 months to February 2010, a rise of about 2%. It's not a big increase, but it could easily have gone backwards given the GFC and the strength of the Aussie dollar, but is it more to do with cheap airfares and lower priced package deals?

On today's BTalk I talk to Matt Hingerty, MD of the Australian Tourism Export Council, about how we promote Australia overseas and what the future has in store for the inbound tourist industry.