Ancient Stories of Our Land by Jedess & David Hudson

CEO-Board Updates

February 2018 CEO Update

TTNQ will focus on Tropical North Queensland’s diverse experiences to create and master a unified story for our destination marketing.

This new direction will involve members joining special interest cluster workshops to share their ideas about how we can be the gateway to the thousands of compelling Tropical North Queensland stories.

In addition, we will have a Digital Marketing group led by Chris Jahnsen which I urge all members to get involved with as the digital space is critical to our future success.

TTNQ Special Interest Cluster Group Champions
Backpackers Claudia McFadden Green (low) Season Chris Jahnsen
Digital Chris Jahnsen Indigenous Jilara Kuch
Drive Claudia McFadden Luxury/Superyachts Sarah Palmer
Education Sam Sakamoto
(partnered with Study Cairns)
Outback Sarah Palmer
Fishing Sarah Palmer Weddings Barbara Thomson
Food & Beverage Amy Mail Wet Tropics (rainforest) Sarah Palmer
Great Barrier Reef Chis Jahnsen Wildlife Barbara Thomson

These groups will meet quarterly and will replace TTNQ’s Strategic Panels. Two interest groups will remain as Strategic Panels as this format works well for these areas. They are Business and Events led by Rosie Douglas and chaired by a Board member, and Hotels which I will chair.

This change of direction comes from the feedback we received from our member survey. The Board has carefully analysed this feedback and it is one of the first steps in implementing a new member-led direction for TTNQ. We also believe this will allow our destination marketing to strategically align with Tourism Australia’s Signature Experiences of Australia.

For these experience themed workshops to deliver results we need members to attend the workshops and discuss their expectations, where new products are needed and how we can share the story. The TTNQ champion will facilitate the workshop, but will not drive the agenda as this will come from those attending. The first Great Barrier Reef workshop was held quickly to give us stories to take to International Media Marketplace in New York where they were well received.

The structure of the TTNQ team has changed so we can quickly move focus as needed to different areas. The executive team consists of Destination Development led by Sarah Palmer, Events led by Rosie Douglas, Digital and Content led by Chris Jahnsen, and Corporate led by Andrea Fogarty with the CEO heading the key marketing functions across all key markets including domestic supported by the team. Our TTNQ international marketing managers bring the regional expertise to our in-market partners for the Eastern and Western markets.

2018 is shaping up to be a positive year for our tourism industry, but we are not the only destination saying this so it is imperative we work together to compete against increasingly well-resourced travel destinations. We need passionate people on the ground in Tropical North Queensland amplifying a shared destination message to the world to ensure our vibrant industry achieves its full potential.

All cluster groups will have the opportunity to brainstorm ideas for domestic and international campaigns over the coming years.  This involves looking at commercial and political challenges, and talking to our regions, councils and trade partners.

I look forward to working with our members on this new direction for TTNQ and hope you will enjoy this exciting journey forward for Tropical North Queensland.


Pip Close
Chief Executive Officer