Interview on 2CC, Canberra Live, with Leon Delaney

  • Transcript, E&OE
Topics: Come Live Our Philausophy campaign.
30 October 2019

Leon Delaney: As we mentioned a little while ago, the new tourism campaign, the advertising campaign is being launched today, Come Live Our Philausophy- philau- laus- well, let me quote The Canberra Times today: it may be either a stroke of marketing genius, or one of the worst slogans ever devised; only time and how much cash lands in Canberra will tell.

Well, let's see if we can find out a little bit more about the thinking behind – our philausophy - with the Federal Tourism Minister Simon Birmingham. Good afternoon.

Simon Birmingham: G'day Leon, great to be with you.

Leon Delaney: How are you today?

Simon Birmingham: Well, thank you.

Leon Delaney: That's the way. Obviously we want to spruik Australia's wares to the rest of the world. Are you convinced that this will get the message across, when we're having so much trouble even working out how to say philausophy, let alone what it's supposed to mean?

Simon Birmingham: Well, I can probably set some minds at ease there in that that little play on words is not something that is going to appear in every ad commercial in every single one of the 15 international markets that campaigns will run in. It's basically the overarching strategy, which is to say: we're not just going to keep showing images of Australian features or landscapes and think that that's enough. What we have to add to that is the people, the experiences, the attitudes that will ensure that visitors who come here don't just see great things, but that they have a great time. And so that will be applied in a range of different ways. The play on word will be used in some instances, but in many other markets and circumstances it'll be more about the way in which those attributes and stories are told of how people will have fun and a great time when they come to Australia.

Leon Delaney: What are the Australian philosophies that we are promoting here? Mateship, casual laid back attitude, beer and sausages on the beach? I mean, the usual stuff right?

Simon Birmingham: Well, they're all in the mix there, certainly, mateship is amongst them. And ultimately, what do people want when they go on a holiday? They want to have fun. They want to have a good time. And what we want to show through these campaigns which over several years will be rolled out in different formats across 15 different countries, is the type of fun and experience that they'll have. And part of that is indeed the incredible tourism operators that we have, whether it's in the Canberra region or whether it's more broadly across the country. People who are committed, not just, as I say, to showing people entertaining things, interesting things, beautiful things - but also doing it in a way that is fun, welcoming, engaging and is part of that Australian is being open and thoughtful and engaging with people.

Leon Delaney: Alright. Sounds very appealing. I think I'm almost sold. The most the most successful Australian tourism campaign ever is the Paul Hogan one, obviously. I read that Paul Hogan will be involved in this new campaign as well; is that right?

Simon Birmingham: Well, looking in- as I say, each of the 15 different countries that this pushes out to will have different ways in which it's applied. So I hope we'll have the reveal there when those aspects of the campaign are finalised. But Hoges, I hope, obviously still has great currency in parts of the US in particular. And so the opportunities are there to use those sorts of famous Australians, and again, you know, they give life to that welcoming positive attitude that Australia has. But the campaign that runs in the US will look and feel quite different to the campaign that runs in China or Japan or India, for example. And that's because we will target the language, the images, the people, all of that to each of those different markets based on the research and what that tells us about the culture and what's appropriate and the type of experiences that will most get people to move from thinking they might like to visit Australia, to actually book a trip to come to Australia.

Leon Delaney: And of course much has been made of the fact that images of Floriade are involved in the campaign. How prominent is the role that Canberra plays in this campaign?

Simon Birmingham: Well- and once again, the activation of this campaign will happen over a series of years. So Canberra will certainly be front and centre where it lends itself to the research, to the market, that we're targeting. So if it's targeting beach loving crowds, well clearly Canberra's not going to be part of the campaign. But in many instances, we're looking at targeting high value travelers who are looking for cultural experiences, and obviously Canberra sits very strongly in that domain. And so the images that can lure people to Canberra and get them to embrace the many different cultural and outdoor experiences available will be a part of it.

Leon Delaney: Yeah. It's about time that the nation's capital took a flagship role in promoting the nation elsewhere in the world, don't you think?

Simon Birmingham: Well, indeed. I get to spend a lot of time in Canberra, and I can say that on the very rare occasions that my kids come up, they always love the visit and the chance that we actually have to get out and visit some of the national capital's great sites.

Leon Delaney: Well, that's great to hear. Thanks very much for your time today, and certainly fingers crossed for the campaign to do the job it's expected to do. Thanks very much.

Simon Birmingham: Thanks so much.

Leon Delaney: Thank you. Simon Birmingham, the Federal Minister for Trade, Tourism, and Investment on 2CC.

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