Forums examine tourism tactics
Australia’s North West Tourism toured the Pilbara last week to meet industry representatives to gain fresh ideas into how to promote the industry in the region.
Forums were held in Karratha and Tom Price to discuss ideas and concepts about doing a better job of marketing the Pilbara.
ANWT chief executive Glen Chidlow said a key theme was ensuring all stakeholders collectively promoted the whole region as a package.
“We know a number of people are coming through the Pilbara already, so it is about looking at ways we can get to these people and sell the attributes of this region,” he said.
“We need to find ways for tourists coming through to allow enough time to explore the attractions in the Pilbara.
“Part of that is in sending a welcoming message to the people, make them feel particularly welcome and that we offer them every opportunity.”
Mr Chidlow said the use of digital platforms and social media were two areas which needed work.
Port Hedland was well represented at the Karratha meeting, with six residents travelling to attend the event and engage in discussions.
Port Hedland Chamber of Commerce’s outgoing president Andrew Ziems said attendees discussed the fact that while many Pilbara towns were not a destination in themselves, they could be a good stop on the way.
Mr Ziems said places such as Port Hedland could be a good “welcome mat” for tourists.
Among other things discussed at the meeting, the group agreed everything — including dump trucks, holes in the ground, people and stories — were bigger in the Pilbara.
Tourism stakeholders have told the Pilbara News in previous interviews the product is available in Karratha but the marketing has to improve to put the message out, while Hedland stakeholders have previously highlighted a lack of product, which needed to be built on.