Destinations

South Australian Tourism Commission warned ‘Old mate’ ads weren’t “child-friendly” months before launch

Just released documents have shown that the South Australian Tourism Commission (SATC) was warned its now infamous ‘Old mate’ ads were inappropriate months before the campaign even launched.

The ads, released in September, were the work of creative agency TBWA and were roundly condemned as being “offensive”, “terrible” and “depressing”.

 

But new research obtained under Freedom of Information laws and reported by ABC News has revealed SATC was warned that the ads were “not child-friendly” and would only appeal to grey nomads.

According to the report, the ads were shown to focus groups prior to their public debut with respondents bemoaning the campaign as depressing, lacking diversity and being too male-centric.

The documents also stated that “most interstate travellers agreed that it’s not child-friendly and potentially aimed at older travellers or ‘grey nomads’”.

“More variety in the attractions shown in Adelaide/SA would help counter this and enhance the impact.”

Focus group attendees commented: “I can’t take my kids to any of these locations … I’d be more interested in activities for families.”

Another added: “This type of holiday is about 30 years away.”

“I am not sure that they show that there is really enough to do and see there,” said another.

“This ad would be further enhanced, however, by showing different people from different backgrounds or different demographic profiles enjoying the variety of activities in SA,” commented another.

South Australia’s Labor opposition led the chorus of complaints about the ads, lambasting the government’s decision to award the creative advertising work to a Melbourne agency and for cutting the state’s tourism budget.

“Let’s get that advertising contract out of Victorian hands, back into South Australian hands and get our state’s marketing back on the right track,” opposition leader Peter Malinauskas said.

“Steven Marshall’s got an opportunity now. He’s the Premier of South Australia, he’s the Tourism Minister. The buck stops with him and he’s got the chance to reverse that.”

Was the campaign really a failure, though?

In response to the ABC News report, SATC executive director of marketing Brent Hill said it was normal practice in marketing to run focus groups and hear a cross-section of views.

“We knew that not everyone was going to love it, but that it would cut through and generate a lot of conversations about Adelaide,” he told Travel Weekly. “We knew that going in.

“So, when some in the focus groups didn’t like it or commented that it didn’t show enough to do, that’s normal. That happens every campaign, every ad we put out. You never get 100 per cent agreement.

“Labor just chose to pick out some of the worst verbatims and paint it as if it was something that everyone felt.”

Hill also disputed Malinauskas’ claim that the SATC works with TBWA’s Melbourne team, noting that the agency has had an office in Adelaide since July 2017.

Furthermore, the campaign generated $2.6 million in ASR, reached 12.3 million Aussies through earned media and 1,510 articles were generated across the full three ads.

The campaign’s total audience reach across paid, earned and digital media was 22.3 million, off a $1.2 million budget.

SEE WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING

Leave a Reply

Wholesalers

Wholesaler Wrap: Collette celebrates 5th anniversary in Australia, Globus previews 2021 European tours + MORE!

Out of sorts when it comes to the who’s who of the wholesaler scene? This week’s Wholesaler Wrap comes in the nick of time. 

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Boeing confirms debris found in 737 MAX engines, as Qantas eyes cut-price deal

by Christian Fleetwood

Alan Joyce says Qantas’ “unmatched” safety reputation positions it to negotiate a discounted deal with Boeing for a new fleet of 737 MAXs when the jet is re-certified.

Share

CommentComments

Travel Agents

AFTA considers partial ATAS review following collapse of online travel agency

by Huntley Mitchell

The liquidation of an OTA and ATAS member has caught AFTA by surprise. Travel Weekly apologises for the excessive acronym usage.

Share

CommentComments

Tourism

Police shoot man dead in Brisbane after tourist stabbing

by Christian Fleetwood

Police officers were called to a disturbance on Sunday following reports a man armed with a knife had stabbed an overseas tourist.

Share

CommentComments

Travel Agents

Helloworld posts profit and record TTV, but expects “minimal growth, if any” for rest of FY20

by Huntley Mitchell

Can you hear the popping of champagne corks coming from Helloworld HQ? Well, it’s either the company celebrating its half-yearly results or a staff member trying out their new pop gun.

Share

CommentComments

Cruise

More Diamond Princess evacuees catch coronavirus

Meanwhile, experts fear quarantines could be compromised by a longer incubation period.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Flight attendant says keto diet got him fired

The flight attendant claims he was fired for testing negative in a breath test, but says it was caused by the keto diet – not alcohol.

Share

CommentComments

Tourism

Ardent Leisure suffers another loss, warns of further impact from Dreamworld tragedy

by Huntley Mitchell

The company has warned investors it is unlikely that Dreamworld will break even in the second half of FY20.

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

Destination Wrap: Abu Dhabi’s record-breaking visitor numbers, Tourism Fiji rolls out new stage of Bulanaires + MORE!

Meanwhile, the only destination Travel Weekly staff will be exploring today is the streets of Surry Hills in search of a cheaper coffee than the place downstairs.

Share

CommentComments

Cruise

Hurtigruten makes history in Antarctica

Meanwhile, Travel Weekly’s editor has entered the office record books for shortest distance thrown in the staff paper plane throwing competition.

Share

CommentComments

Wholesalers

Aussie wholesaler expands to New Zealand

Staff at an Aussie wholesaler are beginning to work phrases like “choice bro”, “sweet as” and “chur” into their vocabulary upon receipt of this news.

Share

CommentComments

Cruise

Coronavirus: Diamond Princess passengers die, as two evacuated Aussies test positive

The coronavirus outbreak continues to wreak havoc on the travel industry, prompting the federal government to extend its travel ban for another week.

Share

CommentComments