Tourism Australia goes back to the Hemsworth well as US tourist spending declines


Posted

November 01, 2018 06:12:24

Tourism Australia loves the Hemsworth brothers so much it is spending an extra $5.8 million on its campaign featuring “a different Hemsworth”, Luke.

Key points:

  • Spending by US tourists in Australia fell about $100 million in 2017/18 on the year before
  • Actor Chris Hemsworth was used in the original Dundee commercial, and now his brother Luke has been called up
  • China and New Zealand remain Australia’s best source of tourism money, but India is a growing market

The campaign will aim to arrest a decline in tourism spending from the US market, which has fallen for the first time since the height of the global financial crisis.

New figures from Tourism Australia reveal spending from US tourists in Australia fell approximately $100 million in 2017/18 compared with the year before.

Total US spending was $3.7 billion, down from $3.8 billion in 2016/17.

There were 786,600 US visitors, representing an increase of 4 per cent.

Tourism Australia’s head of corporate affairs Karen Halbert said while the decline in spending was not major, it justified the new campaign.

“With markets where you think the economy needs a bit of a push, you’ve got to spend a bit of money and do something to drive that,” Ms Halbert said.

Phase two of the Dundee campaign features the lesser-known actor Luke Hemsworth wandering around scenic locations in Australia, believing he is on a film set.

“How do they make it look so real?” he exclaims in the video.

The advertisement pokes fun at his relative obscurity compared with his world-famous brother, Chris.

“He was a great sport,” Ms Halbert said.

‘We’ve used up our last Hemsworth’

The new Hemsworth campaign builds on the $36 million Dundee ad blitz, starring Chris Hemsworth and featuring a cameo from his other brother Liam.

“We’ve used up our last Hemsworth,” Ms Halbert said.

Phase one of the campaign was launched in February and featured a Superbowl commercial, watched by 103 million Americans.

The campaign has not yet resulted in higher tourism spending, because most US tourists book trips to Australia months or even years in advance.

“You need to talk to your boss and get leave, coordinate everyone in the family, then you need to research and book your trip,” Ms Halbert said.

“You then need to arrive in Australia, spend your money and then have that measured when you leave.”

Hemsworth fees kept secret

Tourism Australia would not reveal the fees paid to Chris or Luke Hemsworth, declaring the deal “commercial in confidence”.

However, Ms Halbert suggested they may have done it at a lower-than-market rate.

“What I can say is they are very patriotic Australians,” she said.

Tourism Australia hopes the Dundee campaign will boost tourism spending by $800 million a year by 2020.

China, India fuelling growth

The stats say 9.1 million international tourists visited Australia in 2017/18, an increase of 6 per cent on the year before.

They spent $42.5 billion, which was up 5 per cent on 2016/17.

China remained the biggest market, with 1,421,500 visitors in 2017/18, an increase of 13 per cent.

New Zealand was close behind on 1,371,300.

There were 335,000 tourists from India, which was up 20 per cent on the year before.

Tourism Australia said India would continue to present a major opportunity in the years ahead.

Last year, it recruited Bollywood celebrity Parineeti Chopra as an ambassador.

Pictures and videos of her tour of Australia were shared with more than 36 million fans, Tourism Australia said.

Topics:

tourism,

government-and-politics,

industry,

business-economics-and-finance,

arts-and-entertainment,

australia





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