Another one woman campaign for Alice tourism


p2319-Tracie-Hall-4By ERWIN CHLANDA
Ayers Rock Resort gets barely a mention (except by one tour company also pushing trips to the West Macs) and visitors are encouraged to stay 10 days in Alice Springs and at its near-by natural wonders.
Tracie Hall is the second woman to recently draw attention to the lack of promotional focus on Alice Springs, but she is taking her campaign to a whole new level.
“The whole idea of my media campaign is to base yourself in Alice Springs – not Uluru – and enjoy Central Australia as well,” she says.
Similar to Beverley Keep2319-Tracie-Hall-1gan, who recently urged the Town Council to get the NT government and industry promoters off their backsides, Ms Hall takes the view, we’ve got it so let’s flout it.
She’s making her point in 100,000 larger than A3 size brochures financed by her.
Ms Hall created the concept, sold 17 advertisements, produced the glossy flier almost entirely with local photographers, graphic artists and printers, and will now distribute it between Port Augusta and Darwin in three road trips during the year.
Ms Hall says advertisers in her media campaign paid about half when compared to the ‘Welcome to Central Australia’ booklet that is produced in Cairns, printed and designed interstate.
p2319-Tracie-Hall-2“Our initiative is not just an advert in a book, it’s a full campaign involving all media elements,” Ms Hall says.
Her brochure is linked with social media exposure, managed also by a local company, and TV spots produced and aired by Imparja.
“No other campaign I know of is using all of the different media elements, has been produced locally, by a local business,” says Ms Hall.
Ms Hall says: “TCA (Tourism Central Australia) have taken an advert in the campaign so there is some support from them that is appreciated.
“They wouldn’t however allow me to use their branding or the visitor information number as the call to action at the end of the TV commercials ‘did not reflect their brand’.
p2319-Tracie-Hall-3“They have a slogan ‘stay another day’. I am disappointed that it couldn’t reflect just how much we have on offer, hence my motto is ‘with so much to do, stay a week or two!’
“I also feel it is up to our individual industry businesses to promote themselves better. Each business needs to put themselves out there more and not just rely on government funded bodies to do so.”


  1. Hello Erwin: Great report, as a local business I was very pleased to be involved in the production of The “Explore Alice” brochure with Tracie Hall.
    Explore Alice is a great way for visitors from all over the world to realise that there is more to the Centre then just Ayers Rock, there is so much to do and see. They will be saying “we’ll stay a week or two”.

  2. I think its great to promote Alice Springs, however, I think you are missing one thing, the tourist spots are in great need of a good clean up and money invested in new modern infrastructure.
    At the Royal Flying doctors, there is hardly any parking. At the Telegraph Station, the parking is too far way for the disabled and elderly people. It can also do with a modern cafeteria.
    The women’s prison carpark could do with bitumizing. To benefit the town, we also need to get rid of the stigma that we are the murder capital of Australia. Alice Springs is also the worst place to walk at night times due to its lack of safety. Many tourists also ask why are all these people drunk? My answer is, I don’t know.

  3. We are so proud of the hard work Tracie has put into this campaign! Proud to be on board!

  4. @ Fred the Philistine: Do you think because of some issues you feel are wrong in our town that we should not be promoting our town?
    Many of our attractions, parks and tourism businesses have had and are going through updates and changes as they are heavily invested in having a successful business.
    Wherever you go in the world you will have parking issues. Think Sydney, New York, and anywhere, really.
    Bitumen on a car park will not bring visitors, and the murder capital of Australia, well I speak to people along the highway to Alice Springs as well as those in town and have yet to hear ANYONE in years mention anything along those lines.
    It seems to be the locals who like to keep perpetuating that slogan.
    While I feel we always need to be vigilant about antisocial behavior in town recent measures have curbed this behavior tenfold.
    I also have seen similar anti social behavior in many other towns, small towns, Darwin, the Gold Coast, again Sydney.
    So I don’t think people see this as a uniquely Alice Springs issue. Wouldn’t it be great if we could all talk up the good things in our town as there are so many instead of the continual knocking?
    How much better could we all be ambassadors to our visitors if we all could point out all the wonderful things this town has to offer rather than look for anything that doesn’t measure up in your eyes.

  5. Tracie is right (Tracie Hall, Posted April 5, 2016 at 8:44 am). Alice’s days of fame as a murder capital are long gone.
    It is nearly 10 years since Clare Martin introduced alcohol regulations which began the road to improvement, and the drop in homicide rates, as well as major injuries and stabbings, has been dramatic and sustained.
    It is something to brag about as a town.

  6. Tracie: “You Go Girl, You Good Thing!”
    Pleased to be working with you on your Explore Alice Springs and The MacDonnell Ranges Brochure. As a regular resident muso performing out at Glen Helen Homestead, at sunset last night up on Finke River lookout, I had a lengthy conversation with a Dutch couple.
    They hired a car and were surprised to discover there was so much more to do and see than they’d anticipated.
    A familiar story really.
    So they were planning to extend their visit and now look like spending a week in The Alice.
    We are all ambassadors and I’ll never miss a chance to highlight the “Must See” places.
    An hour or so later, down the hill, I started my evening performance and had the (largely European) audience singing along with “You’ll Never Never Know, If you Never Never Go”!
    Yes it’s an OLD campaign, but it still bloody well works! We need to continue to promote the town and push our own barrow, in our own way.
    So well done Tracie and well done to the Alice Springs News Online for highlighting Tracie’s efforts to promote the region. Every little bit helps. SKIP.

  7. Hey Tracie. For what it is worth I proffer the slogan “Have an affair with Alice”! Well done to Barry Skipsey too for his salesmanship.

  8. @ Fred the Philistine: How often do you speak to tourists? What experience do you have in the tourism industry? As a tour guide Anglo / Francophone, I can tell you that Alice Springs is noted for its cleanliness and friendly atmosphere. Travelers know that everywhere in the world there is hooligans, drunkenness and crimes. Google it!

  9. I don’t disagree with the sentiments expressed by either Tracie Hall (April 5, 2016 at 8:44 am) or Bob Durnan (April 5, 2016 at 10:13 am). And of all the things that Alice Springs could do to make its public places safer and more welcoming, car parks would have to be low down the list. However, while the slogan ‘murder capital of Australia’ is hardly helpful, ‘Fred the Philistine’ (April 4, 2016 at 8:06 pm) is right in the sense that our ‘murder’ rate is exceptionally high, although statistics refer to homicide rather than murder, taking in manslaughter and driving causing death as well as attempted murder.
    The NT as a whole has the highest state homicide rate in the country. The national rate in both 2010–11 and 2011–12 was 1.1 per 100,000. In the NT it was 4.8 and 5.5 respectively. In Alice Springs it can be a multiple of that. For the 12 months to November 2015 the rate was 14.
    It can be more meaningful to look at the raw numbers. From November 2009 to November 2015 there were 25 homicides (excluding attempted murders) in Alice Springs. This compares to a total of 27 for Darwin, a city with almost three times the population.
    As for non-lethal violence, the NT also has the highest offender rate in Australia for ‘acts intended to cause injury’: in 2013–14 it was 1,673 offenders per 100,000 persons aged ten years and over. In Alice Springs the rate was more than three times that. In these same years two-thirds of all assault victims in the NT were Indigenous. The victimisation rate for Indigenous women was more than three times that of Indigenous men, and for almost three-quarters of Indigenous women the assailant was a family member (for men the figure was just under half).
    We know that excessive drinking plays a very large role in the high levels of violence we experience. In the NT police report alcohol to be involved in 60 per cent of assaults; in Alice the figure is closer to 70 per cent. So Bob is right, action in this area has had and will have greatest impact and we’ve seen it when the POSIs are comprehensively applied. Their discriminatory nature is another question and makes bragging difficult.

  10. @ Tjilpi: Can I play too?
    How about: People are dying to come to The Alice.
    Or: Come to The Alice – we’ve got a new ED.
    Then there’s: Like it rough? You’ll love The Alice.
    Or something simple like: At least you won’t get eaten by a croc.
    For what it’s worth, yours has plenty of merit too.

  11. @Kieran Finnane. While we can always keep pushing these stats about the woes of the NT social problems and I don’t mean to belittle ANY of the points you make, I do however feel everywhere you travel in the world there will never be the ‘perfect’ place to visit. That is a fact.
    So what’s wrong with looking at and trying to point out the positives we can offer our visitors, a beautiful climate, stunning scenery, and the sense of adventure you get either flying or driving into A Town like Alice. I have lived here 26 years and will not make light of our social problems. I will however be positive in how I help educate our visitors showing them that common sense will always make a holiday more enjoyable where ever you visit. If we all keep looking only at certain points that makes “bragging difficult” as you say, we are contributing to the demise of the tourist industry in this town.
    Yes we need to be realistic but as soon as anyone says anything positive about this town you will always find 3 more that just want to knock it.
    So why not point out the good things as well so at least there may be a future in tourism in this town!
    I do see the faults and where I can do my bit to help,but I will talk about the town I have called home for so long(and so have so many of those who comment) with the love and enthusiasm and point out all of our positive points. If it’s that bad why are we all still here?
    We are here because Alice Springs has a wonderful community spirit and some fantastic places/icons/cultural connections that enrich us all, despite how negative the points people want to keep pointing out.
    Surely you have some positives to balance out the conversation.

  12. @ Tracie Hall (April 7, 2016 at 1:36 pm): I commend your efforts and campaign, and the Alice Springs News Online is full of stories that ‘balance out the conversation’, including decades’ worth from me on the town and region’s rich cultural life.
    My point in the comment below is that we have to acknowledge, not sweep under the carpet, that the incidence of violence in our community is exceptionally high, not simply ‘similar’ to that found elsewhere. And my remark about the difficulty in bragging is specific to the current regime for curbing alcohol abuse: its discriminatory nature makes it unsustainable in the longer term.

  13. @ Kieran Finnane: Not once did I or would I try to attempt to sweep anything under the carpet.
    I am just trying to do what most people who love living in this town would do.
    That is mention and talk up all of the positives we have to offer and promote Alice Springs as an exciting place to base yourself and to Explore Alice Springs and the MacDonnell Ranges.

  14. @ Tracie Hall: You no doubt include as people who “love living in this town” Kieran Finnane (who moved here 30 years ago) and me (40 years), who have given local, national and international readers and television viewers untold thousands of reports extolling the multi faceted appeal of The Centre. Just look at today’s lead story on this site.
    Erwin Chlanda, Editor.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here