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Workshops to help Mackay regional tourism operators recover and grow

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The Hon Martin Ferguson AM MP

Workshops to Help Mackay Regional Tourism Operators Recover And Grow

24 May 2011

Martin Ferguson Minister for Resources and Energy Minister for Tourism

Jan Jarratt Queensland Minister for Tourism, Manufacturing and Small Business

Mackay’s disaster affected tourism businesses will benefit from a series of eight local workshops being held as part of the joint Federal and Queensland $12 tourism industry recovery package.

Federal Minister for Tourism Martin Ferguson and Queensland Tourism Minister Jan Jarratt said the workshops would offer a range of skills to businesses to develop and implement their own strategies to recover and grow their businesses following natural disasters.

Minister Ferguson said the workshops have been developed by Tourism Australia and Tourism Queensland, with the support of the regional tourism organisations - Mackay Tourism. The workshops are part of a program of marketing and industry support activity being rolled out to assist the Queensland tourism industry in its recovery efforts.

"There is no doubt that the floods and cyclone that hit Queensland earlier this year impacted the tourism industry either directly or through the perception that businesses were closed," Minister Ferguson said.

"The good news is that almost all tourism operators have recovered or are well on the road to recovery and reported a very strong Easter trading period.

"The workshops are part of a Tourism Capacity Program to support individual tourism operators by providing them with support on a range of topics including web optimisation, online marketing education, weatherproofing your business and grant writing."

Ms Jarratt said she encouraged all tourism operators to attend the Mackay workshops to gain insights from an array of tourism experts and apply that information to their own operations.

"Mackay's popularity as a tourism destination is still going strong, despite the difficulties the industry is facing," Ms Jarratt said.

"Business travellers and the driving holiday markets are delivering big returns for locals, so it's critical that we look for ways to grow this potential and the Tourism Capacity Program will provide a great insight into opportunities to do this.

"We want to help locals improve their online operations and distribution systems to enhance forward bookings, rather than waiting for visitors to arrive in town."

For more information or to register, tourism operators should visit or contact Maria McDougall on 07 3535 5255.

A list of locations and dates for upcoming workshops are detailed below:

Location Workshop Date

Mackay Weatherproof your business Tues 31 May

Mackay Web optimisation Wed 1 June

Mackay Online reputation management Wed 1 June

Mackay Online marketing education Tues 7 June

Mackay Domestic Ready Phase 1 Tues 28 June

Mackay Domestic Ready Phase 2 Tues 12 July

Bowen Tourism marketing Tues 12 July

Bowen Web optimisation Tues 12 July

Media Contact: Bindi Gove (Minister Ferguson) 0406 644 913 Scott Forbes (Minister Jarratt) 0407 890 389