Treasure Trail campaign invites Canberrans to ‘dig a little deeper'

Published on 05 March 2020

Launch of the Treasure Trail tourism campaign

A new campaign launched today by Queanbeyan-Palerang Regional Council is set to put the spotlight on regional towns along the Kings Highway impacted by the devastating fire season.

While recovery efforts ramp up to assist coastal towns directly impacted by the fires, the gateway villages between Canberra and the South Coast are still reeling from the impact of the fires and lengthy road closures which saw visitation plummet over the critical holiday season.

The ‘Treasure Trail’ campaign, to be rolled out across television, print, radio and digital channels encourages Canberrans to discover the many gems in our local region. The campaign – a unique collaboration between Queanbeyan Palerang Regional Council, local marketing agencies, media organisations and local influencers – aims to drive increased traffic to Bungendore, Braidwood and neighbouring villages by asking people to ‘linger a little longer’ on their journey or consider a day trip or short break.

Queanbeyan-Palerang Regional Council Mayor, Cr Tim Overall said he was confident the new campaign would leverage the good will in the community.

“The impact of the fires and the closure of the Kings Highway on our regional towns has been significant, but we now have an opportunity to help our neighbours recover.

“This campaign will help us shine a light on the many experiences on offer in the region and I’m confident it will be an important motivator for people to visit and support the recovery.

“We know there is enormous goodwill in the community and that’s been demonstrated through the way this campaign has come together. On behalf of Council, I want to sincerely thank the marketing agencies, media outlets and community members who have all donated their time and services to get this off the ground,” Mayor Overall said.

The development of the campaign has been led by Canberra-based marketing agency Coordinate with the support of a range of partners including media outlets, influencers and other suppliers.

Coordinate Director Warren Apps said the campaign has been designed to provide longer term support to impacted communities.

“The opportunity here extends well beyond a ‘recovery’ campaign” he said.

“Canberrans think they know these towns pretty well. They’ve been a regular pit stop on trips to the coast for as long as any of us can remember, but when you look a little deeper you find a collection of villages that are bursting with great food, unique shopping, art, history, natural beauty and welcoming people.

“The opportunity here is more long-term – to reframe the way people think about these villages by building that level of awareness about what’s on offer and encouraging people to seek out a new experience,” Mr Apps said.

Senator for New South Wales Jim Molan said the support for the cafes and shops along the Kings Highway would certainly be welcomed by locals.

“Having spent lots of time and fought fires around Braidwood and Nerriga this summer, I know the impact this has had on the towns on the Kings Highway,” Senator Molan said.

“The Treasure Trail is a great opportunity for Canberrans and other travellers to that area to find that local surprise and charm of our region.”

The Treasure Trail campaign launches this week with the first phase aiming to build awareness of the range of experiences on offer in the region. A number of local influencers have joined the campaign to share ‘gems’ on social media using the hash tag #foundmytreasure with visitors being asked to do the same.

The campaign will then shift up a gear in April with a month-long ‘treasure hunt’ encouraging visitors to shop and spend locally for a chance to win a weekend at the stunning Mona Farm in Braidwood.

NSW Deputy Premier and Member for Monaro John Barilaro said he was pleased to see the focus firmly placed on the Kings Highway villages and towns.

“The Kings Highway is the lifeblood of these towns, especially in summer, so the impact of the fires and road closures will have a significant impact for some time.

“I know places like Bungendore and Braidwood have so much to offer visitors and I’m pleased that this campaign will give them a platform to share their stories with a broader audience.

“It is so important that we rally around these communities  – not just in the short term, but into the future, and this campaign is an important part of that,” said Deputy Premier Barilaro.

The Treasure Trail campaign was officially launched on Thursday morning, 5 March in Bungendore.