Taking the Gloss off Tourism Marketing with the Remote Control Tourist
Clemenger BBDO Melbourne
Tourism Victoria

Destination marketing in Australia could colloquially be described as ‘Tourism porn’.
‘Tourism porn’ is a rose-tinted visualisation of a destination:  60 seconds of beautiful people, impossibly gorgeous landscapes, sumptuous food, and the sandiest sandy beaches imaginable. 
However, this wasn’t always the case. In a highly rational category twenty years ago, Tourism Victoria embraced a more emotive communications platform. This fresh approach successfully positioned Melbourne (Victoria’s capital city) as a romantic cultural hub with hidden laneways, foodie hang-outs and multicultural diversity.
But with success came imitators. And a style that was once unique became more and more clichéd and generic.
Not only was the category’s use of channels becoming similar, it had also failed to change with the times. The information age had given people unlimited access to the ‘real story’ online through peer review websites. Yet seemingly nobody had rethought how to engage people in this new world of consumer control.
The ‘Melbourne Remote Control Tourist’ campaign embraced this change, and invited people to discover the real Melbourne themselves.  No soft focus, no scripting, no retakes. The campaign got the world talking, with people from 3,888 cities taking part and over 150 million media impressions earned, at a conservative value of $3.7 million.
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