Supported by Pacific Islands Trade & Invest, a 3-month Central Pacific Marketing Campaign has successfully raised the awareness of Kiribati and the Marshall Islands amongst the Australian tourism industry and traveling public.
The marketing campaign was launched in Brisbane for the period March 21, 2013 through to June 30, 2013. The campaign was built around the new air links provided by Nauru’s national airline, ‘Our Airline’ which offer one stop services from Brisbane to Kiribati and the Marshall Islands via Nauru. Such convenient air connections make these two untouched Central Pacific island countries only 6 hours flying time from Australia.
In the Australian market, where little promotion of either country has ever occurred, the campaign generated over 300,000 hits via two Australian micro-sites (www.gotomarshallislands.com.au andwww.gotokiribati.com.au) and attracted the public’s interest through other mediums which include online digital advertising, social and print media.
Sydney-based “Tropics Tourism and Marketing Services” devised the campaign, which was co-funded byPacific Islands Trade & Invest , the New Zealand High Commission in Tarawa and ‘Our Airline’ (Nauru’sflag carrier).
With the “Brisbane Holiday and Travel Show,” drawing more than 400 people to the Kiribati and Marshall Islands booths, the tourism agencies for both island nations capitalised on this marketing opportunity. The Director of Tourism, Kiribati National Tourism Office (KNTO)-, Reeti Onorio-Rui expressed, “Kiribati has enjoyed very positive exposure from the marketing campaign. Around 5,000 people visited our campaign website and there has been increased interest especially in our niche markets such as fishing, surfing, culture and battlefields.”
The General Manager, Marshall Islands Visitors Authority (MIVA), Brenda Alik-Maddison added “the campaign has successfully built awareness of the Marshall Islands in Australia as a potential tourism destination. We have had several requests from operators to begin promoting the Marshall Islands and this has been very encouraging. It has also helped raised the profile of tourism within the Marshall Islands.”
Commenting on the campaign, Our Airline CEO, Geoff Bowmaker mentioned,“As the major airline of the Central Pacific, ‘Our Airline’ has been pleased to participate in this campaign. The increased awareness in the tourism offerings of the region has brought new opportunities for ‘Our Airline’ to grow demand on our services to Majuro and Tarawa from Brisbane.”
Pacific Islands Trade & Invest’s Trade Commissioner,Australia, Caleb Jarvis, commented, “We are very pleased to have been able to play a role in building market awareness in Australia for these two emerging tourist destinations.”
Mr. Jarvis added, “This project has been another example of how Pacific Islands Trade & Invest supports and delivers innovative programs that develop and promote the growth of tourism in some of our smallest and most distant member countries.”
The Pacific Islands Trade & Invest network of offices located in Auckland, Beijing Sydney, Tokyo and a desk in Geneva, is the trade and investment arm of the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat (PIFS). Pacific Islands Trade and Invest aims to provide the region with high-quality export facilitation, investment and tourism promotion services.