Regional collaboration drives tourism
Not-for-profit organisation Avon Tourism is seeking to build a competitive tourism industry for the seven shires within the Avon Valley region in Western Australia.
Chair, Karen Dore, said that working collaboratively with the seven local government areas (Beverley, Chittering, Goomalling, Northam, Toodyay, Victoria Plains and York) and their respective visitor information services, was the ideal way to promote the whole region.
Collaboration continues to be a focus for local government; at the Ninth National Economic Development Conference (held in the Swan Valley in early October), Western Australia’s Governor, Her Excellency the Honourable Kerry Sanderson AC, closed her opening address with the words “…in summary, aim high, think positive and collaborate with likeminded organisations”.
Avon Tourism, as a sub-regional tourism organisation, is a classic example of regional collaboration, providing a conduit for the independent promotion of the whole region, for the benefit of visitors, operators and local governments.
“Echoing the words of Frank Kero (Product Specialist, Orange County USA), I feel that by combining our collective strengths, the entire region becomes more attractive to prospective visitors.” Ms Dore said.
“The highly successful, and well-received, Avon Valley Planner is distributed at a number of WA visitor centres and at both Perth airports along with being featured through attendance at the annual Caravan and Camping Show. “Inclusion at interstate and overseas trade shows is also made possible thanks to the assistance of Experience Perth. This coverage is something that would not present good value for money to an individual Local Government Area.”
In addition to the Planner, Avon Tourism further contributes to regional promotion through the hosting of a comprehensive search engine optimised webpage with booking system and regional event calendar, facilitation of networking between regional visitor information services and administration of regional Social Media opportunities (Facebook, Instagram and Twitter).
Regionally linking projects were also identified in the Strategic Plan, as a means to strengthening the profile of Avon Valley WA.
A recent weeklong photoshoot has been undertaken throughout the region and work continues on the Wheatbelt Community Chest funded ‘Avon Valley Motorcycle Friendly Region’ project.