Saturday, July 13, 2013

What is your local council doing to help your business?

Lynne Lawson is an independent website, marketing consultant that works with and alongside businesses in the accommodation and hospitality industry.

In a guest post below, Lynne gives her unique insight into an online campaign her company has helped develop for Hospitality NZ.

Lynne poses a (tongue-in-cheek?) question that many moteliers may also wish to consider:

What is your local council doing to help your business?

Currently I am helping run a couple of Social Media campaigns for Hospitality NZ as they take on the Christchurch and Wellington City councils proposed alcohol selling changes. First of all I have to admit that I wondered what all the fuss was about. “So what if the bars close at 1am, does it matter that all of them will have to be closed by 3am.” Given that my days of bar hopping are limited to once in a blue moon I didn’t see the big deal. Then I started to hear the horror stories. The Nelson City Council is proposing bars close at midnight? Seriously are the Nelson council feeling a bit sleepy? Even I stay up later than 12!

I spoke to a young man whose hours would be cut and he would lose approx. $250.00 per week in wages. What does that mean for our hospitality workers? Do they start to head off overseas as well?

I read stories of businesses that would have to close, and bar owners not willing to invest in other ventures. The horror stories are endless.

Then I started to think about the wider impact it would all have on our tourism image. Imagine Queenstown during ski season – if the party lights went out, and everyone was expected to be home in bed at 1 or 2am. Imagine a Rugby international in Wellington and the bars wouldn’t let you in after 1am because of a 1 way door policy. New Zealand’s reputation as a vibrant country would die.

Some of us have heard stories about what Keith Richards said about Invercargill in 1965, and I personally would hate NZ to be described like that to the international tourism market.

The Government has put extra funding into creating new tourism opportunities. The Hobbit movies have given NZ tourism a real boost. The last thing we need are our local councils stuffing it up with draconian rules. Check out your councils Local Alcohol Policy (LAP) and if it is a nightmare kick and scream and help fight against it. We need our nightlife and bar’s to help our country stay young and vibrant!

See my latest Facebook campaign here:

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