South Australia government has claimed they will review their tourism marketing approach after people criticised a recent Sam Smith concert. 

After people did not take kindly to the South Australia government using celebrities and influencers to promote tourism in the state, the tourism department has issued a statement and promised a ‘review’ of their strategy. 

This comes after people slammed an exclusive Sam Smith concert at the d’Arenberg Cube in McLaren Vale last week, which was majorly attended by celebrities, influencers, and TV personalities. Since the event was in partnership with the South Australia Tourism Commission, fans did not agree to the concert being funded by taxpayer money. 

According to ABC, South Australia Tourism Minister Zoe Bettison said: “We’re going to review that and then look at other ways that we could have communicated, but this is the new way of marketing. We’ve got to be different, we’ve got to be innovative.” 

She added: “One of the key things we look for is a diversity of ways of engaging people. So certainly our events calendar has got a lot of attention, and that’s a key thing.”

The situation was exacerbated after speculations about Smith’s fee for the concert caught fire, with the opposition claiming that he was paid anywhere between one to 1.5 million dollars given his usual appearance fee. 

While Premier Peter Malinauskas did not disclose exactly how much Smith had been paid for the concert, he claimed the Commission had spent ‘less than half’ a million dollars.

He added: “As far as I can go, without compromising the confidentiality arrangements that are in place, which are standard operating procedures… it’s not even of half the amount that was being proffered around by the opposition.”

Defending their move of paying celebrities to make appearances throughout the state, Malinauskas claimed that it was ‘crucial’ for SA to boost tourism using such strategies. 

“Once upon a time governments would pay celebrities like Paul Hogan to throw another shrimp on the barbie for a television advertising campaign,” he said. “Now, the world goes towards spending money on social media amongst those people who have the greatest sway.” 

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