Wonga Wetlands Product Development Strategy

The Wonga Wetlands were established to manage local waste water, but the regular water supply has created a nature-based tourism attraction featuring diverse birdlife.

The client wanted the attraction to be reinvigorated to have the potential to attract significant overnight visitors to Albury (and a subsequent economic benefit).

We conducted an extensive analysis of the current visitor market, and tested the strategic competitiveness of the existing product against competitors and the needs of the target markets. We gave the client ‘tough love’ – advising that the wetlands experience was too passive to build an ecotourism proposition capable of achieving the stated objectives, then we gave them the good news, that it could be achieved with a set of integrated creatively themed nature based soft adventures. We concepted nature based adventures that capitalised on the site’s competitive advantages and unfulfilled needs of the target markets, and built photo montages of each to assist portray product strengths.

Our ideas included shifting the arrival experience and visitor node to a site with stronger brand values and visitor impact, an alpine coaster to create a wow factor, interpretive themed ropes course and multi levelled mountain bike course.

We tested product attractiveness with two target markets, first as a spontaneous reaction from minimalist marketing collateral and then from a fuller explanation, providing a useful reality check not typically done in market testing.

We costed the capital works and built 10 year visitor forecasts, then generated a Cost Benefit Analysis to show the client the overall economic benefits – a critical piece of information to seek funding.

Finally we built a Staging Plan and Business Case.

 

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