Over the last two months Tourism New Zealand has hosted three distinct famil groups here in New Zealand- each tightly focused on special interest segments and highly specialized itineraries.
Gregg explains; "Tourism New Zealand is prioritizing sectors for growth. This has flowed through to the way we work with wholesalers. Although work continues with training all wholesalers on the merits of a New Zealand holiday, a specialized approach has already brought results."
During April and May, United States travel sellers in the golf, luxury travel and cruise sectors all received a 100% Pure New Zealand experience. The trips were supported by Air New Zealand.
"The tailored approach of these famils delivered results within a week of their return to market with each group placing bookings. The results will be ongoing with work underway with attendees to create additional packages and promotions for their respective markets."
First in town were 13 golf wholesalers from the North American Golf Tour Operators Alliance.
"These niche wholesalers focus on selling golf holidays only and currently don't sell New Zealand at all - it is all Scotland, Ireland and England," says Gregg.
"We brought them here to experience everything New Zealand has to offer a golfer, so they can return to the US, build some itineraries based on what they have experienced and start marketing to their databases.
"And it's not just the golf but the wider holiday experience - the food, wine and accommodation, we are showcasing."
Developed in alignment is a new section on newzealand.com, dedicated to golf.
"Then we hosted the luxury travel sector, with 20 operators from the Virtuoso group of luxury travel sellers experiencing the country.
"Finally it was the 20 cruise planners.
"The emphasis with this group was to encourage pre- and post-cruise holidays," says Gregg. "Our objective is to move the groups back onto land once they have completed their cruise. For example, we might push Queenstown with those whose clients have cruises that start or finish in Auckland."
"By tailoring experiences to the specialized expectations of core travel groups, we can support the travel trade to package up New Zealand in an even more appealing way," concludes Gregg.
Commenting on the cruise famil, Michelle Fee, CEO Cruise Planners, said the 20 agents were truly 'wowed' by the experience.
"The cultural events, breathtaking landscapes, delicious foods and incredible excursions, showed us that New Zealand is a country that has something for every traveler. Because they saw and experienced so much they now have a better idea of how and whom to sell this amazing experience to."
Find out more about our trade familiarization activity here.