In 2006, Tourism Australia spent 180 million dollars
on a disastrous global campaign featuring the swimsuit model Lara
Bingle, who posed the question: “So where the bloody hell are you?” The
proper question, perhaps, would have been whether or not foreign
standards authorities would allow the slogan at all. The United Kingdom,
Australia’s third-largest tourist market after New Zealand and China,
banned the ad for being vulgar, and tourism numbers from there and other
target markets plunged.
Partly as a result of that debacle, and also because of the success of the 2009 Tourism Queensland campaign, the Tourism Australia managing director, Andrew McEvoy, said that campaigns run through social media represent the future of the industry.
Australia is not planning to abandon anytime soon the broad campaigns
that form the bulk of the agency’s annual budget of more than 150
million dollars, he said, it is clear that targeted campaigns are the