NBN Assistance Package Producing Innovative Results Wed 5 September 2012 David O'Byrne Minister for Innovation, Science and Technology The Minister for Innovation, Science and Technology, David O'Byrne, today launched an innovative social media campaign to promote tourism on the Freycinet Peninsula. The campaign has been produced with funding allocated to the Tourism Industry Council of Tasmania, under the Tasmanian Government's $1-million NBN Industry Assistance Package. The Freycinet campaign is also a pilot program and role model to help inspire other tourism operators to embrace social media and the NBN. "The businesses that prosper most in coming years are likely to be those which embrace the digital economy - and Government has a key role in supporting them," Mr O'Byrne said. "We created the NBN Industry Assistance Package to help educate Tasmanian businesses about the opportunities of high-speed broadband. "It's also about inspiring and coaching them to seize those opportunities. "Of course, it's not all about the NBN. The digital economy is already here, with more than 70 per cent of Tasmanians already using the internet to do business. "Tasmanian businesses - including tourism operators - need to reach out to customers online, or risk falling behind in their markets. "That's why practical pilot projects like the Freycinet social media campaign are so valuable. "It provides a working example and inspiration for other businesses to follow and build on," he said. The Tasmanian Government's Economic Development Plan sets a strategy to grow and diversify our economy by playing to Tasmania's natural strengths. "The early roll-out of superfast broadband is one of those clear competitive advantages," Mr O'Byrne said. "We know it's not enough just to have this new technology available. Business needs coaching and support to help access it, and make the most of its considerable advantages. That's what we're providing," he said. The Freycinet social media campaign was commissioned by the Freycinet Association Inc. - a group of tourism operators from the local area. It's quirky, funny, creative and unusual, and will mainly operate through social networks, to a target audience of 25 to 40-year-old couples. In May 2010, the Tasmanian Government's NBN Industry Assistance Package provided $1-million to four peak Tasmanian industry bodies ($250,000 each) - the Tasmanian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Tasmanian Farmers and Graziers Association, the Tasmanian Small Business Council and the Tourism Industry Council of Tasmania. The package helps industry and business understand and take advantage of the NBN. The Tourism Industry Council of Tasmania (TICT) is using its $250,000 share of the NBN Industry Assistance Package to seed-fund innovative initiatives around Tasmania, and boost digital literacy for tourism operators. The projects are designed to show other tourism operators what can be achieved, and encourage them to follow-suit with their own online campaigns. Specific projects include social media marketing campaigns designed to encourage off-season visitation, digital economy training, and identifying tourism industry role models. The TICT's initiatives are spread from Circular Head, Port Sorell and Latrobe, the West Coast, and Coles Bay (Freycinet).