“Where progressive artisans create earthly treasures.”
That’s the focus of a new Visit Ballarat tourism campaign titled Made of Ballarat.
The campaign, which will be officially launched on Thursday, aims to challenge perceptions of Ballarat by promoting the city’s ‘entrepreneurial heritage’, ‘earthly riches’ and ‘creative energy’ to Melburnians.
Visit Ballarat identified Melbourne’s ‘lifestyle leaders’ – those who like exploring rather than traveling a well trodden path – and ‘cultural connoisseurs’ – those looking for authentic, indulgent experiences – as the target market for the campaign.
Chief executive Noel Dempsey said these target groups were a a high value segment of people who spend money.
“Ballarat was ranked 11 out of 12 regional Victorian destinations for visitation with this group,” he said.
“We have cultural appeal but it is not being done in a way that is interesting. It’s about doing old meets new in a more contemporary engaging way.
Where progressive artisans create earthly treasures.Made of Ballarat campaign
“We are conservative. A lot of people don’t want change. But we need to start to appeal to this audience and do it in a different way.”
Tourism is the sixth largest employer in Ballarat. It is as an industry Visit Ballarat believe will support Ballarat’s future population growth.
“Today Sovereign Hill is one of Ballarat’s biggest employers. There could be another Sovereign Hill tomorrow if we do our job right,” Mr Dempsey said.
The Made of Ballarat campaign is based on four key pillars: ‘legend’, ‘earthly riches’, ‘creating’ and ‘rebellion’.
“Artisans create earthly treasures” was found to be the most appealing proposition, after 12 months of research with both Melburnians and Ballarat locals.
The campaign tells the story of 12 Ballarat artisans. A list of about 80 others will be featured over time.
Marketing tools include a short thought provoking cinema advertisement, a bi annual newsletter to be circulated in Melbourne cafes and newspapers, social media advertising and artisan documentaries.
The website will be launched on Tuesday.
Further promotion includes swing tags, bags and products. A series of 10 mini artisan classes and events are scheduled for the remainder of 2018.
“If we do our job properly I really think this has the potential to become the brand – so it won’t be Visit Ballarat, it will be Made of Ballarat,” Mr Dempsey said.
“Daylesford and Hepburn Springs are massive tourism destinations around wellness. The quiet revolution in Ballarat could make us easily as popular with the right people if we get in early enough.”
COMMUNITY INVITED TO CAMPAIGN LAUNCH
Community members are invited to the launch of Visit Ballarat’s new tourism campaign Made of Ballarat.
The community launch will be held on Friday at Regent Cinemas from 4.15pm.
Visit Ballarat chief executive Noel Dempsey and other staff will present the details of the campaign.
The launch will include a screening of the campaign’s cinema advertisement and four short documentaries featuring some of Ballarat’s celebrated artisans.
Knife maker Adam Parker is featured in one of the documentaries. He combines ancient techniques with modern technologies to transform steel into knife blades.
“Handcrafted goods have a meaning to the person who has purchased it,” he said in the short documentary.
The community launch will follow a VIP launch of the Made of Ballarat campaign on Thursday.
Visit Ballarat has collaborated with Commerce Ballarat, Committee for Ballarat and City of Ballarat for the launch. Mr Dempsey said it was important Ballarat embraced a ‘whole of city’ approach.
“The more key stakeholders around the city that advocate for the same projects the better,” he said.
Made of Ballarat is designed to engage more than just Melbourne visitors. Mr Dempsey said it also aimed to create a sense of pride by telling the stories of Ballarat’s creators. “Ballarat is so much more than old, cold and gold,” he said.
You can email firstname.lastname@example.org if you know of an artisan who could be featured.
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