BUSINESS Events Tasmania (BET) has overhauled its ambassador programme, adding nine new experts to its arsenal in a bid to secure more national and international conferences for the state.
Speaking to TTGmice, CEO of BET, Stuart Nettlefold, said while the original programme launched in 2010 was an exercise in profile raising, the reinvigorated programme was a more formalised and strategic approach to winning new business.
“What we’ve done in the Tasmanian Ambassador Program is really target people we know have the networks, knowledge and expertise, and use that to bring in conferences in our key sectors such as Antarctic and Southern Ocean, food and agribusiness, information, communication and technology,” he said.
Among the new ambassadors are Paul Holper, director of Scientell; Neil Bose, principal, Australian Maritime College; and Sean Tracey, senior research fellow, Institute of Marine and Antarctic Studies.
“They are very keen to work with us to use conferences to showcase what they do to the world, to attract global talent back to Tasmania and really drive those beyond tourism benefits,” Nettlefold said.
“The patron is (Australian) Premier Will Hodgman, which means we’ve got buy-in at the highest level of government.”
Nettlefold also said that while parallels could be drawn with programmes in other states, the key difference was in the ambassadors targeted to join the programme.
“Each state has different priorities in terms of their strengths economically, so we’ve been very targeted to those specific drivers.”
In 2015, 41,000 delegates visited Tasmania for business events, injecting A$132 million (US$99.8 million) into the state’s economy.
“The Tasmanian brand is hot at the moment and the destination appeal is high. That certainly helps what we do in terms of getting conference and incentive groups into the destination.”