The past 6 months have been tumultuous for Australian businesses. The impact of the pandemic has been felt from sole traders to large companies. In May 2020, 74% of active Australian businesses had changed how they operate in response to the Covid-19 pandemic (ABS Business Impacts of Covid-19 study).
Some businesses were able to move quickly to respond to the changing landscape. Others, including many bricks and mortar retailers, had to work hard to pivot their businesses, rapidly upscale their online offering and shift their marketing efforts.
To help our community respond to the challenges facing them, we consulted with local residents and businesses. Their feedback helped us create our Covid-19 community recovery plan.
In our consultation, businesses owners told us that to make their businesses more adaptable and resilient in a period of uncertainty they needed help upskilling.
They identified marketing, strategy planning, e-commerce, digital and data, finance, and building customer relationship skills, as key areas for development.
Supporting Sydney businesses
Our new Reboot program is just one way we’re responding to what our community needs. Held from mid-October 2020 to June 2021, the free weekly webinar series is focused on increasing digital skills for small businesses and creatives.
The program is for retail and hospitality owners, startup entrepreneurs, creatives, artists, and professional services businesses.
The series is being produced for the City of Sydney by education marketplace Zambesi. It will feature experts from some of Australia’s fastest growing companies including Pilot, Canva, Vinomofo, TEDxSydney, Pedestrian.tv, Brighte and Spaceship. Each event includes a live workshop session with a local business owner or creative discussing their current challenges and exploring potential solutions.
The series kicks off with two webinars with Tim Doyle, one of the most renowned marketing minds in Australia. Tim joined Koala on 21 November 2016 in a strategy role – at a time when the business was 12 months old and already doing $2m a month. In March 2018 Tim was moved into the head of marketing, which he held for 10 months to January 2019. During this period the business grew from $35m to $56m a year – an increase of $21m during his time at Koala. In 2019 he Tim launched Pilot, an online direct-to-consumer healthcare platform for men. The start-up recently raised $8m in funding.
At Tim’s first event on Monday 12 October, participants will learn how to shake up their business model and identify new growth opportunities. The next webinar on Monday 19 October will look at the changing marketing landscape.
Other speakers in the first series of events include:
- Fleur Brown, co-founder TEDxSydney, speaks about the importance of storytelling in attracting customers
- Andre Eikmeier, cofounder of wine ecommerce platform Vinomofo, talks about rethinking your brand strategy
- Chris Wirasinha cofounder of Pedestrian.tv, talks about creating content that stands out, gets shared and builds community
- Anna Cheng, former growth leader at Spaceship, shares the essential tactics to help your business grow fast.
The Reboot program kicks off on 12 October 2020 and runs until mid-2021. See the full program here.