Sharing the Eighth Wonder of the World
There is no question that Australia has some of the most beautiful scenery in the world. There’s only one issue . . . you can’t drive to most of it. Our stunning rainforests and secluded beaches are often off the beaten track, but not for much longer due to a partnership between NSW National Parks and Google. And yes, there is a marketing implication here!
NSW National Parks has become the first Australian organisation to gain access to the Google Trekker technology. Rather similar to Google’s famous Street View, Google Trekker uses the same technology but is powered by humans as they walk around the landscape attached to an enormous backpack camera. This large database of happy snaps will then be stitched together and uploaded as an extension of the existing Street View system allowing Australian and international scenery lovers the opportunity to check out what is on offer.
This is by no means a new idea with Google venturing into the Galapagos Islands’ coral reef system, the Colorado River, Venice’s canal system, Mount Everest and even the Kennedy Space Centre, but this unique program does provide some exciting benefits.
As a tourist, being able to check out these destinations without leaving your home provides a great strategy in risk reduction and strong relationship building. How? It lets you work out which sights are on the ‘must-see’ list. It lets you work out where you want to go, assuming you don’t have time to meander entire rainforests during your trip. And it allows the gathering of information about the kind of terrain you will be travelling along and the distances you will be walking to allow better judgements on clothing, footwear, timing and water needs amongst other important tourist-y decisions.
Have you ever been sightseeing in a foreign city or country and been left disappointed at accidentally picking all the substandard attractions? Well, allowing tourists to gain all this information before they leave means that the risk of picking the dodgy attractions is greatly reduced. It also means they are better prepared for their experience resulting in a better time as they haven’t worn high heels to walk the National Rainforest resulting in a stronger relationship with the attraction.
Then there are the after effects.
Not only are tourists able to relive their exciting tourism experience once they return home, but this platform also provides the opportunity to show off the great sights to all their friends. These sights can be pinned and shared on social media, they can be added to Facebook timelines and they can be used as pictorial aids during the obligatory photo viewing with friends. This then starts the circle over again inspiring all their friends to visit these beautiful sights who will then turn to Google Street View for tourism research.
There are always the doomsayers who suggest that this will negate any need to ever travel to these stunning scenic destinations. But have you ever been deterred from visiting a place because you could look at a small picture on your computer? I didn’t think so!