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Tourism spend now has to be maximised


The front page of last night's paper would have caught the attention of all those with an interest in Gisborne's economy and many ratepayers who have questioned value-for-money in current tourism marketing spend.

No one actually in the tourism business would have a problem with the staff at the visitor information centre. Their job is to look after the tourists when they get to Gisborne and in my experience of international tourists, both the old Tourism Eastland staff and the new staff perform well.

It is not in their job description to get tourists here. It is those spending promotional and marketing funds that (not before time) should, in the current climate, have to justify their high salaries and show the results of their marketing spend.

They do actually have time to reassess their recent past unimpressive efforts and maybe look in a new direction, such as high yield against high numbers.

The talk of a bubble with Australia opens up strong possibilities for Gisborne and the East Coast. It will be interesting to see how that is handled. My mother had a saying: “Don't tell me how to do it, show me.” I am already personally getting inquiries from Australia.

Frank Murphy

  1. Zeynep Simpson says:

    First sunrise is a very limited promotional tool. Instead of wasting money on temporary promotions, they should just convince the Rocket Lab people to put a museum somewhere there. I’m sure the Govt would be happy to subsidise it partially. They can ask Nasa for some spare parts. They can come up with something like Cite de l’espace in Toulouse with spaceship-labyrinths for children. Building it would help the construction industry in Gisborne, even the contractors. If you do it in a sustainable way – in a way that won’t need fixing every three years – it becomes profitable. It creates more businesses and jobs. The transport to/from there becomes a business, cafes become a business, even the production and sale of local products go up. Make a rocket-shaped cookie and sell it for $5. People always visit anything space-related and spend some money there (Rocket Lab is very under-used in Gisborne tourism).
    It is very difficult to profit from sunrise. It is a free event to be seen freely from anywhere, after all. You would want people to be able to find “unique” things to do at least for three days. Gisborne doesn’t have this (but could, easily).