BEAMING BRIGHT: Spirit of Hervey Bay manager Bobbie Hayter is looking forward to the upcoming whale watching season.
BEAMING BRIGHT: Spirit of Hervey Bay manager Bobbie Hayter is looking forward to the upcoming whale watching season. Alistair Brightman

Coast businesses feature in a best of Queensland list

THE recipe for success in running the Spirit of Hervey Bay has drastically changed in the 30 years Bobby Hayter has been in the game.

From needing an informative website to regularly updating social media and advertising online, the internet has transformed the way tourism works.

Marking these boxes has helped the whale watching operator make Tourism and Events Queensland's 'Best of Queensland Experiences' list.

Spirit of Hervey Bay is one of about 80 Fraser Coast businesses included in the annual list, which requires certain criteria to be fulfilled, including positive customer reviews.

Best known for its whale watching tours, Spirit of Hervey Bay keeps busy off season with Mary River cruises and private charters.

Ms Hayter said the ability of customers to post instant feedback online was a motivating factor in delivering top service.

Positive photos and reviews, she said were priceless in helping to spread the word of both of the business and Hervey Bay.

"We are always working to keep improving the business," Ms Hayter said.

"With the internet, there is nowhere to hide.

"A lot of people do look at reviews and do lots of research before booking."

Ms Hayter said having an informative website which answered most questions people would have was helpful.

The other Fraser Coast businesses included in the Best Experiences in Queensland include accommodation, restaurants and entertainment

Ms Hayter is looking forward for whale watching season to start in July with a steady stream of bookings already coming in.