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Australian tourism launches Canberra campaign

In an effort to boost tourism to the country's capital, the Australian Capital Territory's tourism body wants to demonstrate the city's best features by paying social media users to review them in a AU$1 million campaign.
26 October 2012
The 'Human Brochure' campaign is the brainchild of ACT tourism boss Ian Hill and involves two batches of 250 people each being shown the best Canberra has to offer.

Mr Hill says Canberra's position as the political centre of Australia has given it a hard reputation which is difficult for many tourists to see past.

"Our research shows that 90% of people who visit Canberra have their expectations met or exceeded, yet many people still have a negative perception of Canberra," said Mr Hill.

"You don’t hear people say ‘Melbourne put taxes up today’ or ‘Sydney put taxes up today’, but people use the word Canberra in that context.

"It’s become a sort of unofficial Australian sport to bag Canberra, which means we’ve got to work twice as hard to change people’s perceptions."

Australian tourism advertisements are usually TV based but Mr Hill has chosen a different tack and is relying on the incredible reach and influence of social media to improve the city's reputation as a great tourist destination.

Over 30,000 people applied for a place in the AU$1 million (£640,000) campaign - the only requirement: being heavy social media users.

The 'Human Brochure' campaign includes many of the country's most visible social media users and Mr Hill is hoping they'll go some way to changing the public perception of the country's capital.

"We want people to think of Canberra as a place that interprets where we've come from, where we are and where are going as a nation - and to have some fun doing it," said Mr Hill.

You can follow the #HumanBrochure campaign on twitter.

While Australia might have been on your To Visit list for years, maybe you never considered Canberra as part of your trip. You'll need an Australian Travel Visa. The most popular of these is the ETA Visa, because it can be easily and quickly applied for online.