Year-round marketing blitz for Snowies

THE Snowy Mountains is set to launch a year-round integrated marketing blitz that will promote the region's attractions in spring, summer and autumn in addition to the traditional winter snow season.

The campaign, to be orchestrated by Tourism Snowy Mountains (TSM), is intended to create awareness and demand for tourists during the non-winter months of 2014 and 2015.

In addition to promoting the 2014 winter season to 'first timers,', the plan is to introduce the marketing program next spring that will see website upgrades and improvements, online, social, TV, radio and print media activities.

The new marketing project has been significantly kick-started by a $305,000 NSW government grant announced on Saturday by Tourism Minister George Souris and Member for Monaro John Barilaro.

The grant is conditional on TSM raising a similar amount. It already has $100,000 from the ski resorts and has to raise a further $205,000, bringing the total campaign spend to $600,000.

It has the support of the ski resorts and Snowy Hydro and will consult with the four councils with which it is associated - Snowy River, Cooma-Monaro, Tumbarumba and Tumut - and other possible supporters.

TSM's Executive Officer Neil Thew said TSM was confident of securing the matched funding as the campaign was purely for the benefit of the region.

He said the five year plan was to introduce new summer season marketing campaigns each year, offset with winter programs, all designed to make the Snowy Mountains a vibrant year-round visitor destination that would see benefits trickling down into every regional business and community.

TSM chair Peter Cochran said the organisation had the capacity to maximise the government's investment through a well coordinated program that would provide a more consistent flow of visitors.

Mr Barilaro said tourism was vital to the Monaro region.

"We welcomed over 1.3 million visitors in the year ended September 2013. These visitors injected over $630 million into the local economy and we must strive to grow that figure in the coming year," he said.

No other region of NSW could offer the attractions the region had.

Encouraging more visitors could only be a good thing for local shops, restaurants, hotels and various attractions, he said.

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