SAN FRANCISCO -- The New Zealand Tourism Board launched an
advertising campaign in the San Francisco Bay area promoting the
country and commissionable packages offered by several tour
operators which specialize in the destination.
It is the first time the board has operated an advertising
campaign specific to one U.S. gateway, said Gregg Anderson, the
board's regional manager for the U.S. and Canada.
The $400,000 northern California campaign is in addition to the
board's $2 million national advertising campaign which runs in
newspapers and magazines with the slogan "100% Pure New
The focus of both the regional and national promotion is on the
country's food and wine and active vacations, including walking,
bicycling, golf and yachting.
Anderson said the San Francisco area was selected for the
focused promotion because of the region's already high rate of
travel to New Zealand. The country last year received 200,000
visitors from the U.S. and 25,000 to 30,000 of them were from the
San Francisco Bay area. Anderson believes the region has not been
fully tapped because of New Zealand's high repeat factor.
"Thirty percent of our visitors return within four years of
their first trip," he said. "New Zealand has changed as a travel
experience. We have become more like Europe in that people want to
take an area and experience it in depth. One of my goals is to
change the thinking so that it is not a once-in-a-lifetime trip and
people think of it like they would a trip to London or Paris."
Anderson said with the popularity of last year's America's Cup
yachting event in New Zealand among Californians and the U.S.-New
Zealand exchange rate the most favorable it has ever been the time
was ripe for the focused marketing.
The advertising promotes the "100% Pure" Web site, www.purenz.com, which
lists packages and tours offered by tour operators and provides
links to travel agents who have become Kiwi Specialists.
Anderson said the success of the Kiwi Specialist program has
been impressive, with 581 travel agents in the U.S. and Canada
signed up for the program in the seven months since it started.
Another 400 agents have requested applications to participate.
The program replaced the board's New Zealand Preferred Agent
Link program, which was limited to 250 agents based on
Benefits and tools available under the new program include an
individual membership that moves with the agent should they change
jobs, a bi-monthly elecronic newsletter and access to the board
through a dedicated e-mail address at [email protected].
Agents also receive quarterly product updates with material for
regional tourism groups, tour operators, accommodation provides and