Our marketing and sales programs invite Australian travellers to see and experience Canada in a whole new way. Our integrated advertising partnership programs—focusing on ski travel, fully independent travel (FIT) and group travel—are the cornerstones of all major activities in Australia. These programs focus on raising awareness of Canada as a desirable destination, driving the consumer to book Canada now.
Whether we launch an integrated marketing campaign, conduct travel-trade shows or bring media and destination partners together to exchange stories and tourism experiences, our initiatives target three key audiences:
Australia’s 2015 consumer-direct strategy is focused on the consideration phase of the path to purchase. Our goal is to drive aided destination interest and active consideration for travel to Canada through curation, creation and distribution of relevant, inspiring and exciting content. We will employ a mix of paid search, paid digital media, native advertising, content partnerships and social integration channels to reach new audiences as well as enhance our relationship with engaged users. Our consumer-direct strategy is aligned with our travel-trade, PR/media relations channels and social channels to optimize our influence across the various stages of the path to purchase.
Activity will target Australia’s priority Explorer Quotient® (EQ) types—Free Spirits and Authentic Experiencers—who pose the best potential for engagement. The strategy utilizes the latest research findings such as Global Tourism Watch and CTC’s conversion studies. Insights from both CTC in-market teams and key industry partners aid media and channel planning to ensure we optimize our consumer projects.
Our main activity will concentrate on the consideration phase of September through November to fuel the conversion period of early 2016, supported by nimble and responsive activity in key booking, planning and consideration phases during the year.
CTC-Australia's trade development focuses on the wholesale aspects of selling travel. Our team in Australia organizes trade shows, makes sales calls, coordinates tour operator and partner familiarization (FAM) trips and conducts training under the Canada Specialist Program. We ensure travel agents—from elite Canada Specialist agents to those with a general interest in Canada—have access to the training tools they need to learn about and share all that Canada has to offer.
We also educate the local fully independent travel (FIT) wholesalers and group tour operators to ensure that the reservation teams and outside sales staff are up to date on Canada's products, regions and experiences. The Canadian Signature Experiences (CSE) program has been introduced to key wholesaler partners with excellent feedback and enthusiasm. We continue to work with these partners to include CSE members in co-op marketing campaigns. For example, CTC-Australia organized a p roduct m anager s’ FAM trip to British Columbia and Alberta in September with a CSE focus. The trip was supported by Air Canada.
Alliances with Air Canada and Qantas have been strengthened recently due to increased air capacity, the possibility of a new direct flight with Air Canada, the codeshare agreement with WestJ et and a short series of direct flights with Qantas. Air Canada is supporting FAM trips as well as working with CTC- Australia on marketing projects.
Ski wholesalers are an independent segment and deliver a large number of visitors to Canada. Work with this group of dedicated operators goes on year-round, ensuring a steady flow of relevant information, contacts and advertising support that is resulting in growing traffic to Canada.
Canada Specialist Program
The Canada Specialist Program (CSP) helps educate travel agents and wholesale reservation staff on the unique range of Canada's experiential products available to the Australian consumer.
Participating travel agents are offered a range of information and support, including:
- Webinars (online Canada presentations)
- Canada Specialist websites and e-updates
- Consumer leads through agency details listed on CTC websites
- Canada window displays
- CSP members-only incentives
- Chance to be selected for group FAM trips
- Independent FAM trip rates
- Assistance with Canadian seminars for Canadian partners as well as sales calls upon request
- Regular e-newsletters
- Certified web-based training program
- Exclusive travel agent rates for Canadian partners such as hotels and attractions
- CSP logo for use in e-mail auto signature for certified Canada Specialists
- Publication of contact details on CTC’s consumer site
CTC-Australia also collaborates with tour operators to develop promotions exclusive to Canada Specialists.
Trade s hows
CTC-Australia's public- relations and media activities showcase Canada as a compelling, four-season destination to Australian journalists. We invite media reps to attend events at the beginning of each year (such as the Corroboree media lunch) to hear about new Canadian products, destinations and experiences. Alongside these events, FAM trips are organized for media to experience Canada's products firsthand.
The focus of CTC-Australia's public relations and media activity is to build strong and lasting relationships with media nationally in Australia and to grow awareness of Canada as a must-visit destination for consumers.
Independent FAM trips
CTC-Australia focuses on independent FAM trips as opposed to group FAMs that include, where possible, Canadian Signature Experiences (CSE) businesses and new developing regions. Iconic products and destinations are used to introduce new products. We create a pitch document that is presented to travel and magazine editors in the hope that they will commission a writer to travel to Canada to cover a story. We anticipate taking approximately 40 to 45 individual journalists to Canada in 2015 , who will visit many Canadian provinces and territories.
Two television shows were shot in Canada in 2014: one in British Columbia, Alberta and Yukon in late July, while the other took place in late May and early June, again in BC and Alberta. This medium is a key sales tool for creating awareness for a destination. Past TV shoots—such as 2013 ’s “Australian Today Show,” which ran live starting in Lake Louise, then Banff, then Whistler and Vancouver before finishing in Victoria, reaped strong sales and travel bookings for 2014 and 2015.
Other FAM trips:
- Two Australian Instagrammers travelled to Quebec in f all 2014 to capture the magnificent fall colours and Quebec’s unique culture and flavours;
- An Aussie blogger went to Quebec and Yukon to explore food in the wild and the Quebec c ulinary scene in the fall;
- The editor of Australian Geographic Outdoor visited Canada ’s North to discover new outdoor pursuits;
- The Travel Editor of The Australian n ewspaper and the Editor of WISH Weekend Australian, both national publications, explored the luxury resorts and product offerings in BC;
- I n September, CTC-Australia hosted the editor of International Traveller magazine at Fogo Island, NL .
We will continue to cultivate blogger and Instagram FAMs and work in social media to ensure Canada’s products and stories stay top of mind.
GoMedia Canada Marketplace
GoMedia is held annually in Canada and is hosted by a different destination each year. In 2014, GoMedia Canada Marketplace was held in Winnipeg, MB, Aug. 17-21, attended by seven Australian journalists ( a mixture of newspaper, magazines, freelancers and social media reps) . GoMedia 2015 will take place Sept. 27-Oct. 1 in Penticton, BC.
Australian media website and newsletter
Australian media gather Canada information from CTC’s Media Centre. The site offers a huge variety of story ideas, itineraries, celebrity spots, media releases and news from all over Canada. CTC-Australia sends an e-newsletter six times a year to key Australian media highlighting significant products, seasons and events in Canada.
In February of each year, CTC-Australia hosts two media events during Corroboree, one in Sydney and one in Melbourne, to share our stories for the coming year and to determine which media are keen to travel to Canada over the next 10 months.
|Inbound travel to Canada from Australia|
|Overnight trip to Canada (000's)||207.7||219.3||188.1||202.2||215.9||219.4|
|Year to year change||16.7%||5.6%||-14.2%||7.5%||6.8%||1.6%|
|Year to year change||15.9%||10.3%||-12.3%||13.0%||11.0%||9.3%|
|Source: International Travel Survey, Statistics Canada. Note: *Compared to preliminary 2009 estimate Quick Facts.|
- Australia posted GDP growth of 3.3% in 2012, a quicker pace than in recent years. The boom in outbound travel by Australians continued through 2012, supported by the strong Australian dollar. (Source: Oxford Economics)
- Australians took 8.2 million outbound trips in 2012, a 5.4% increase over 2011. (Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics)
- There were 219,400 overnight trips to Canada from Australia in 2012, up 1.6% from 2011.
- Australian travellers injected $393million into the Canadian economy in 2012, a 0.3% improvement on 2011.
- In 2012, Australian travellers spent on average $1,791 per person-trip; the average stay was 15.6 nights.
- Travellers 34 years of age or younger accounted for 27% of Australian overnight visitors to Canada, while the proportion of those aged 55 and over tumbled 10 percentage points to 37%.
- In 2012, British Columbia (+0.9%) remained the most popular province among Australian travellers, while Ontario (-8.3%) and Alberta (-22.1%) declined.
All sources: Statistics Canada, International Travel Survey, unless otherwise indicated.
Qantas has announced two new seasonal services between Vancouver, BC, and Sydney. During the summer, there will be 13 direct return flights in June and July. For keen Australian skiers, there will be 20 non-stop return flights from mid December until late January 2016.
A new codeshare agreement between Qantas and WestJet has opened opportunities for Australian travellers. Starting Oct. 15, Australians flying into Los Angeles and Honolulu can connect to flights to Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton and Toronto, four of Canada’s main hubs. From there, 20 further WestJet connections across Canada will be available.
Guided by the CTC corporate strategy, the Australia strategy focuses on high-yield travellers—consumers who spend more, stay longer and are less influenced by exchange-rate fluctuations and market pressures.
Some 48% of all visits to Canada from Australia include a side trip to the US during the journey. An additional 29% of travellers visit Europe and Canada in one trip—opening the door for the creation of dual nation vacations.
Work is being done to match Canadian travel experiences to the growing interest in fully independent travel (FIT) and fly/drive products. This is being done through the Canadian Signature Experiences (CSE) program and incorporating these experiences into co-op marketing campaigns with key wholesaler partners. In addition, as more Australian travellers classify themselves as adventurous, Canadian tourism businesses can tap into the growing adventure-travel market. Australians are also keen skiers, with many travelling to ski resorts in western Canada.
As FIT travel continues to grow, there is an opportunity to capitalize on this niche segment by developing packages that focus on experiencing Canadian nature—both as an observer (for the less active) and via soft adventure. Interest in lifestyle/experiential travel continues to grow, with food and wine, spa, culture and soft adventure all ranking as preferred activities.
Australians over 55 enjoy travelling at a less strenuous pace, and their journeys involve a blend of nature, sightseeing, cruise and rail vacations, the magnificent Rockies plus other dramatic landscapes and unique attractions. Travellers of all ages are signing up for responsible tourism projects.
Winter non-ski and “White Christmas” products are making a comeback in the market with FIT and group programs being offered.
General Sales Agent
D.C. & Associates Worldwide
Contact: donna [at] dcaworldwide [dot] com (Donna Campbell)
Nathan [at] dcaworldwide [dot] com (Nathan McLoughlin)
Account Director – Trade, Australia