Tourism industry stakeholders launch national ad campaign
PETER Hearnshaw was one of the 151 people representing the tourism industry to lay his towel on the silica white sands of the iconic Whitehaven Beach yesterday morning.
It was more than a pleasure trip for the owner of Airlie Beach Tourism, representatives of Ocean Rafting, Explore Whitsunday, Tourism Whitsundays, Tourism and Events Queensland and Hamilton Island.
The beach voted number one in the southern hemisphere provided the perfect backdrop to launch an international and domestic ad campaign entitled Welcome Back.
Beach towels were laid out on the sand to shape the letters “welcome back”.
A month on since Cyclone Debbie tore through the Whitsundays, the collaboration of industry stakeholders was designed to send a message loud and clear to the nation and the world: the Whitsundays is back. A symbol of the industry’s readiness to welcome back travellers from both far and near, the beach towel message is a timely invitation for visitors to return.
Mr Hearnshaw said the campaign was something the industry needed in the wake of Cyclone Debbie.
“Airlie Beach really is open for business to welcome people back to the Whitsunday islands,” he said.
Tourism Whitsundays CEO Craig Turner said the event on Whitehaven was not just a public relations stunt but a PR “activation” that would target a large audience via a social media and digital campaign, partly funded by the Queensland and Federal Governments’ release of $2 million to encourage Australians to holiday in Queensland.
He said the majority of the Whitsundays was open again “and the whole town cannot wait to welcome back travellers and to watch them, like many before them, fall in love with the region”.
“It’s important the world knows that most hotels have opened their doors, tours are back on the water and the sun is again shining on the Whitsundays. Whitehaven Beach, voted one of the top 10 in the world, is ready for people to unfurl their own beach towel on,” he said.
Tourism and Events Queensland CEO Leanne Coddington said the “welcome back” message would deliver a great boost to the local tourism industry.
“This support is vital to the Whitsundays community, with tourism worth $1.6 billion to the region and supporting more than 7000 local jobs,” she said, adding “the Whitsundays is shining brightly,” after personally experiencing a bird’s eye view of Whitehaven Beach.
LURING IN VISITORS: Tourism industry stakeholders, in collaboration with Tourism Whitsundays and Tourism and Events Queensland, launch the Welcome Back national ad campaign from Whitehaven Beach.