Tourism New Zealand is beaming after taking out the title of Best Tourist Office International at the National Travel Industry Awards (NTIA’s) for the third year in a row.
We asked Tourism New Zealand’s PR Manager for Australia Lauren Blank how they keep taking home the accolade year after year.
She said it was all about being “proud and passionate about New Zealand” and letting that shine through in their work.
You can catch our full chat with Lauren below.
What does being recognised by the industry in this way mean to you?
We are honoured to be recognised as the Best Tourist Office International for the third year in a row.
It’s fantastic recognition and feedback on our trade media campaigns, training events and famils.
Almost 50% of all Australians that travel to New Zealand book through traditional trade channels, so travel agents are the real ambassadors and story-tellers of destination New Zealand.
What are some little or big touches you and the team make to ensure you leave a positive impression on agents/clients?
When hosting industry or travel agents in Australia or New Zealand our team always embodies the warm and welcoming embrace that New Zealand’s well-known for.
From welcoming everyone with “Kia ora”, we always try to bring people along with us on the journey of New Zealand.
Travel agents who have been one of our famils will vouch that there’s nothing else like being hosted in New Zealand.
From the warm and welcoming embrace agents experience to the unforgettable experiences and remarkable landscapes.
What are some changes the brand has made over the last year that would have contributed to your success this year?
Tourism New Zealand has focused on bringing New Zealand’s people to the forefront of our marketing.
Often visitors come to New Zealand for the landscapes, arriving as strangers, but leave as family, talking about the warm and welcoming embrace of the people.
For the travel trade, New Zealand’s local guides are extending their welcome to travel agents and their clients.
Providing agents with new resources and content that allows agents an insight to what their agents would experience on the ground in New Zealand, and enabling agents to build an itinerary for any customer that might walk through the door.
What would you recommend to other brands hoping to win in future years?
We are extremely proud and passionate about New Zealand which shines through in oue enthusiasm when interacting with trade, consumers and industry.
To live and breathe the values of your brand is the most important check against any work.
How important is your organisation to the industry?
Tourism is the number one economic export earner for the country. Australia is New Zealand’s largest international visitor market – accounting for almost half of all international visitor arrivals.
Our work in Australia aims to increase consideration and preference of New Zealand as a holiday destination.
The overall objective is to increase the value of Australian visitors by attracting more first-time holiday visitors, increasing seasonal arrivals, and growing holiday stay days.
This plays into Tourism New Zealand’s long-term plan for all visitors to enrich New Zealand through growth that is productive, sustainable and inclusive.
Our aim is to inspire and educate the trade on how they can pass this onto their clients at every touchpoint.
What do you love about the industry?
The fact that everyone is striving towards the same goal – to enrich other people’s lives with travel and the experiences that can only be had by immersing yourselves in a new country, culture or experience.
What do you think the future holds for the travel industry?
Tourism New Zealand along with Air New Zealand and seven other tourism industry bodies launched the Tiaki Promise, a commitment to care for New Zealand.
To guard, protect and preserve our home. The future of travelling globally will be educating visitors on how to travel responsibly, and travel agents will have a crucial part to play in this to educate their clients.
What’s your advice for people thinking of joining the industry?
Tourism is one of the most competitive, innovative and sustainable industries in the world and gives the opportunity to impact and elevate communities, individuals and enrich a whole country. Join the industry to share your enthusiasm for your product or place, and you will always love what you do.
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