A message from VTIC Chief Executive, Dianne Smith
What a month it has been!
The VTIC team was proud to present the second Victorian Tourism Conference (VTC), in partnership with Tourism Victoria, to more than 430 delegates at Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre from 20-21 July. You can access the presentations here.
Themed The Next Chapter, the conference was an opportunity to unite Victoria’s tourism leaders with policy makers and identify growth opportunities for operators in our ever-changing sector.
In my introductory presentation, I reinforced the need for industry and governments to collaborate more to ensure we can reach Victoria’s potential in 2015 and beyond.
I was very pleased to present VTIC’s core policy priorities, which we plan to bring to life using the following insights and experiences from the conference:
• Improved ‘hero’ products and attractions – Product and event operators, regional tourism boards and local governments must work together to provide innovative, bespoke experiences.
• Competitive positioning and smart marketing – The retelling of experiences that highlight unique and emotive aspects of Victoria’s attractions must be encouraged. We must trigger story-telling experiences for customers.
• Focus on the visitor ‘experience’ – The focus on the old ‘4 Ps’ (product, price, place and promotion) has shifted – it’s now about focussing on the ‘4 Es’ (experience, exchange, ‘everyplace’ and evangelism).
• Greater accessibility and visitability – As Destination Melbourne’s Laura Cavallo emphasised, a disability does not mean an inability to travel. A seamless journey for all in terms of getting around and accessing visitor information and communication channels will encourage people to stay longer and spend more in our destinations.
• Support for innovative businesses – We need to be very fast, consistent and personal in our responses to customers in this new technological landscape where customers are empowered and expectations are high.
These sorts of themes and discussion points, highlighted throughout the conference, were a promising indication of our passion and potential as an industry to work together to embrace tourism growth opportunities.
Collaboration was aptly demonstrated in what was a really encouraging moment: company director and corporate advisor Laura Anderson was facilitating a Q&A panel with John Stafford of the RACV Energy Breakthrough program, and proposed that John’s Maryborough-based event be showcased at the Australian Formula One Grand Prix as a means to expand its profile and provide an opportunity for further growth.
It was moments such as these that really embodied the spirit of what VTIC hopes to achieve through our policy priorities.
I would like to thank all the 2015 Victorian Tourism Conference attendees, speakers and partners, and all those who assisted in bringing this amazing event to life. We look forward to advancing our core policy priorities and creating our industry’s next chapter together!