An interactive game teaching Chinese children about the Great Barrier Reef is the centerpiece of a new tourism marketing campaign designed to attract thousands of Chinese visitors to Tropical North Queensland.
In Guangzhou for the launch of Tourism and Events Queensland’s (TEQ) ‘Reefocus’ campaign, Tourism Industry Development Minister Kate Jones said the new initiative would target high-value Chinese families who ‘travel with purpose’.
“The Great Barrier Reef is a globally renowned tourism experience. But we recognise we need to find new and exciting ways of encouraging tourists to experience this icon,” she said.
“Visiting the Reef provides a range of educational opportunities for students. It really is one giant classroom, teeming with marine life and supported by a mainland ecosystem that offers spectacular landscapes and diverse experiences for curious visitors to explore.
“This new campaign by TEQ aims to encourage Chinese families to take a memorable and educational trip to the Great Barrier Reef through inspiring a love of learning about marine life with an interactive game.
“To support the promotion, key travel distribution partners in China will offer themed holiday packages for sale, targeting the busy Chinese New Year holiday period.
“The campaign also aims to have trade partners in China singing a united tune about the Great Barrier Reef, with partners in the campaign using consistent messaging and ad creative.
“This approach will maximise the impact of the campaign.”
Member for Cairns Michael Healy said China was Queensland’s biggest and most valuable international market.
“We invest in tourism because we know this industry is crucial to supporting local businesses and jobs growth in Far North Queensland,” he said.
“Targeting families who want to travel for a purpose gives Queensland a distinct competitive edge.
“TEQ has worked closely with travel trade partners in China to develop this campaign to target high-value travelers who have the propensity to stay longer and spend more while they’re here.
“The approach also highlights the diverse range of experiences the length of the Great Barrier Reef, with the aim of encouraging visitors to spread out their trips.
“With Chinese ‘Golden Week’ fast approaching in early October, and then Chinese New Year only a few short months away, this campaign launch is perfectly timed to take advantage of a peak Chinese travel booking period.
“The campaign is also planned to take advantage of Chinese New Year being a traditional time to travel as a family.
“By working with trade partners in a coordinated way, this campaign will support bookings into Cairns and the Great Barrier Reef during this important travel period.”
Cairns Mayor Bob Manning said the initiative would help communicate the message that, despite facing significant challenges, the Reef is still vibrant, beautiful and alive.
“In fact, the Great Barrier Reef is likely the best managed reef in the world,” Mr Manning said.
“There is no better way to get this message out than by engaging with children. This represents a great opportunity to reach a globally significant audience, to tell the story of the largest living structure in the world – the Great Barrier Reef.”
Tourism Tropical North Queensland CEO Mark Olsen said offering an interactive and educational experience for Chinese families was an innovative approach to marketing the Great Barrier Reef.
“With Cairns being the closest access point to the Great Barrier Reef and offering the largest range of reef experiences, this new initiative will ensure Chinese families are experiencing the amazing diversity the Great Barrier Reef has to offer.”