Chief Executive Officer's Report

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There's no denying it's been another great year for tourism in Tasmania – total visits are up, the number of visitors exploring our regions is up and our occupancy rates are at record levels.

For domestic consumers, we remain the second most appealing destination after Queensland and the response from the international travel trade to Tasmania at this year's Australian Tourism Exchange was exceptional.

On top of this, audience reaction to our marketing suggests it's resonating with consumers with interest in Tasmania growing beyond our expectations, and we're playing our part to keep this momentum going.

Under a renewed vision to grow Tasmania's visitor economy, Tourism Tasmania aims to increase the number of leisure visitors to the state. We expect this group to make a significant contribution to the government's and industry's visitor economy goals.

Our tourism brand is also playing a part and it's vital we continue to explore the brand's creative potential, knowing that our success in the market place depends on it. Our Go Behind the Scenery theme successfully portrays this and gives us further scope to communicate our unique character.

We know that being brave and exploring new possibilities is not without risk, however we must be doing something right when other destinations start mirroring our approach. This only goes to show how important it is for us to stay ahead of the game and maintain our distinctive position in the market  if we are to keep growing.

Over the coming year, we'll continue to use a combination of marketing approaches in our domestic and international markets to make sure our tourism brand continues to engage our target market segments and has cut through in the market place.

We'll also help our media partners in traditional and new media generate high quality content on Tasmania to expand the reach of our marketing message.

Third party advocacy remains a priority and we'll continue to encourage others to share their Tasmanian stories and advocate on our behalf through integrated marketing activity on our social media channels and through public relations activities.

And we'll continue to work closely with inbound tour operators and our wholesale and retail travel partners to help them increase their Tasmanian sales in our domestic and international markets.

Each of these approaches offers an effective way to market the state. In combination, they provide a far more powerful means for us to extend the reach and impact of our marketing message and help us achieve the best return on our investment.

Of course, our ability to grow also depends on our industry's capacity to meet visitor expectations. The overwhelming recognition of Tasmanian tourism businesses at this year's Qantas Australian Tourism Awards reflects the high-quality experiences on offer in Tasmania and gives me further reason to  be optimistic about the future.

I thank the board for their support over this past year, the staff of Tourism Tasmania for their hard work and passion in marketing the destination, and our industry partners for their invaluable contribution in raising awareness of the destination and the world-class experiences we have on offer in  Tasmania.

John Fitzgerald
Chief Executive Officer

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