How awards encourage bookings

It’s no secret that today's average tourism business is working harder than ever before to secure each booking. Our buyers are smarter and more demanding, and ultimately want peace of mind that their holiday experience, will meet their expectations.

For the longest time, I didn't subscribe to the chase for a gong. But awards often act as a stamp of credibility in a crowded marketplace, bridging the gap between an ‘unknown’ and a ‘must-do’ holiday experience.

Given the rise in user-generated content, some of the most powerful awards come directly from our visitors. Recently, TripAdvisor listed Twin Waters Aqua Park at number two and Aussie World at number four in the Top 10 Amusement and Water Park Attractions in Australia for 2018.

Awards in general are not always a representation of the industry's greatest work but that's not their real value. Everyone loves a winner. The halo effect of receiving an accolade creates a whole new wave of much-needed passion and enthusiasm among a team.

To bring in recognition for all the work that the tourism operators do, is the pat on the back we need to make sure we don't get jaded and complacent. And ultimately awards do help your business brand. Even the most sceptical and cynical visitor will subconsciously elevate an award-laden choice over a second option. When shopping for a holiday, accommodation or tour, your ‘fame’ will help you sit higher in the selection process.

Locally, nominations are open for the Sunshine Coast Business Awards and nationally the Australian Event Awards. Both programs require entries by 27 August with gala ceremonies to be held in the region during November. As a proud supporter of both events; we encourage every Coast tourism business to consider their potential as a ‘winner’ and submit now.

Also, very worthy of a mention and to be held later this month - 23 August at Maroochy Surf Club, I am proud to participate in the 2018 Vinnies Community Sleepout. Vinnies continues to provide a hand up, not just a handout to assist over 900 people who find themselves homeless on the Sunshine Coast every night. For more information or to make a donation visit: www.communitysleepout.org.au