Tweed and southern Gold Coast developer Sherpa Property Group has added two further sites to its burgeoning portfolio, with the company planning to now expand its successful coastal housing business into the apartment market.
The company has acquired 488 The Esplanade, Palm Beach (pictured), for more than $11 million and 202 Pacific Parade, Bilinga, for $2.5 million. The Palm Beach site is expected to be developed as three beachfront homes and nine, one-per-floor apartments while the Bilinga site will be developed as five spacious, one-per-floor apartments.
The new projects expand Sherpa’s portfolio to six projects spread from Palm Beach to Cabarita on the Tweed Coast. To date it has spent more than $35 million on new development sites.
Sherpa Property Group Managing Director Christie Leet (pictured above) said the company had achieved $20 million of sales across its portfolio in recent months.
“We have tremendous confidence in the strength of the border market and that is supported by the sales success at the projects we have taken to market over the last nine months,” he said.
“We think the southern end of the Gold Coast is crying out for something different to the standard investment-grade product that has been dished up for many years,” he said.
“We will be exclusively catering for owner-occupiers and the lock-and-leave market coming in and out of the major east coast capitals.
“Doing things differently has served us well to date and we are confident remaining focussed on liveability and lifestyle will continue to deliver success in the future.”
Sherpa is developing a new brand to market the apartment components of the new projects when they are launched later this year. The new brand will complement the existing Freedom Homes brand the company has used at its projects to date.
Traditional development strategies for apartment projects are about creating maximum dollar yield per square metre of land. However, the guiding principle under the new Coastal Perspective banner is about creating maximum lifestyle returns for the apartment end-users.
It is that new perspective and a commitment to innovative architecture that underpins the new brand’s ability to deliver on the end user’s wish list.
The company recently released the final homesites at its Scenic Ridge development at Bilambil Heights and has now sold three of the four beachfront homes at The Golden Four project at Bilinga.
In early June the company sold all 17 homesites at its Freedom Caba project at Cabarita Beach in northern New South Wales and in July took the wraps of its $30 million Freedom Beach Homes Rainbow Bay project.
The Rainbow Bay project includes 16 beautifully appointed, free-standing, individually titled designer homes just over 100m from the beach. Prices start from $1.4 million. Eleven homes have already been sold.
Sherpa acquired the 3,947 sqm site at 199 Boundary Street, Coolangatta, earlier this year and has already received development approval for the subdivision of the site and construction of the 16 homes.
The homes were designed by renowned architects Herwig Hartl Architects and will be built by Broadbeach-based builders Jason Doerr and Tim Douglas of Valcon Homes.
For more information visit www.sherpapropertygroup.com.au or call 1300 808 646.
One of the defining moments of the 2019 Federal election was Opposition Leader Bill Shorten’s heavily publicised showdown with Ten Network journalist Jonathan Lea.
Shorten was riding high at the time and cruising towards victory. Just a month out from the poll, his confidence was on full display as he sparred with Lea over the undisclosed cost of Labor’s emission reduction target to the Australian economy.
It did not go well. After initially berating the journalist about his sources, Shorten jumped into a 90-second monologue about the economic failures of the Morrison government, railed against corporate profits and his gave another forceful rendition of his campaign mantra about the Coalition’s imaginary cuts to service.
He completely ignored the substance of the question and when the Lea demanded he answer, Shorten simply scoffed and demanded another journalist be given the opportunity to ask a question.
Lea was having none of it.
“Answer the question. When can people know? When can people know, Mr Shorten, the cost to the economy? You didn’t answer the question.” Lea demanded.
The exchange led news bulletins for a full 24-hour cycle (an eternity in a campaign) and it did not play well with voters. For many, it was confirmation of the underlying questions they had about Shorten and his lack of substance. It was the first crack in Labor’s armour, which had, to that point, been impenetrable.
History tells us despite the stumble, Shorten still took a lead into polling day. But it was not to be, with Morrison leading the Coalition to victory on May 19. In the wash-up, many pundits rightly pointed to the dust-up, along with Bob Brown’s disastrous convoy of anti-coal activism into the heart of Queensland’s coal mining regions, as the turning point in the election.
Politics and the media
Shorten and Lea’s stoush was a prime example of why managing the media is critical to political success, particularly during a campaign. Despite the focus most major political parties put on raising and spending money during an election, there is a far greater correlation between positive earned media sentiment and success than money spent and success.
If money was the key to political success, we would have Prime Minister Clive Palmer overseeing the nation’s pandemic response strategy.
The ability to joust with a hyper-partisan media, without flinching or stumbling, is the most critical skill of any modern politician. It is why so many clearly incompetent people, with great media management skills, can rise to very high positions in politics. Where is Nick Xenophon these days?
While they have been a fixture of politics in most large democracies for many years, the rise of 24-hour news channels has fundamentally changed the way Australian politicians, public servants and other community leaders must deal with the media.
Dealing with the pressure of a live-to-air press conference, sometimes lasting more than an hour, has added a new plank to the required skillset of people seeking high office.
Prior to the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, most Australians’ experience of these live press conferences was their post-spill introduction to their new Prime Minister. Gillard, Rudd, Turnbull and Morrison all made their way straight to a podium after their successful party-room ballots. Each of them knew it was critical to define the narrative of the change of leadership. Some were more successful than others.
However, as the coronavirus swept the world and populations were ordered to stay home, live updates from leaders have become compulsory, and fascinating, viewing. We have seen our leaders under pressure like never before.
My office has the benefit of a television that streams news throughout the workday. This gives me an opportunity to see leaders fronting up day after day to live press conferences and a strong sense of the strategies they deploy to keep the media focussed on their leadership qualities, not mundane distractions like their governance and policy failures.
Throughout the crisis, two leaders – Morrison and Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews – have been head and shoulders above the rest in managing the narrative and keeping their respective press packs under control.
The Bridge and the Shield
Morrison’s extensive experience dealing with the media from a relatively young age as the Head of Tourism Australia through his elevation into Federal Cabinet, oversight of the ‘turn back’ immigration policy and as Treasurer was great preparation for the cut and thrust of daily briefings.
Most of his media conferences have a fairly predictable ebb and flow to them with a long-winded introduction to the topic of the day followed by some gentle follow-ups to clarify data, government strategies or any inconsistencies. It’s after this initial parry that the real fireworks begin. It is in this environment, being peppered by tough questions on uncomfortable topics, where Morrison comes into his own as a media master.
In recent weeks, the overwhelming majority of questions relate to the perceived shortcomings of the government’s income-support initiatives to deal with the economic fallout of the States’ decision to shutter economies.
The Prime Minister’s go-to tool for handling difficult questions is the primary tactic media trainers have been teaching their clients for many years – bridging.
Bridging is the cornerstone of dealing effectively with the media and an essential tool to control a media interview. It is the linguistic tool that allows the interviewee to move the conversation seamlessly from a negative or unhelpful question on to safe ground.
Done well, bridging provides the ability to transition from uncomfortable territory to safety. Bridging is essentially about reframing an issue and refusing to acknowledge the narrow frame the reporter has built around it. The structure of a linguistic bridge is relatively simple:
A – acknowledge the question
B – bridge to your new narrative
C – concentrate on your preferred content
It can take dozens of forms, but here are just a few bridging statements you might hear if you listen to enough media conferences.
“That is an important question, but what matters in this situation is..”
“We understand the issue well and your concern, but I think the more important thing is…”
“They are great government talking points, but I think it would be more accurate (or correct) to say…”
“This issue has been covered extensively., here’s the real problem…”
“We have looked extensively at this issue, and what it comes down to is this..”
“It is wrong to focus on that, for the benefit of your viewers let me emphasise again..”
The most common, and most serious, mistake when utilising bridging is to not acknowledge the question of the journalist. This acknowledgment of the question requires a good deal of precision, intelligence, practice, and dexterity to get right.
Whether it was arrogance, or a lack of focus, Shorten’s critical mistake in not dealing with Jonathan Lea, was his failure to address or recognise the substance of the question. Nobody, particularly journalists, like to be treated with contempt.
Acknowledgment shows that you take the question seriously and that you admit that the question is legitimate. If you do not acknowledge the question, you risk the journalist making you the focus.
The pandemic’s other greater media performer has been Dan Andrews. While his Government’s policy failures have resulted in dozens of deaths. His tactical approach for placating a hungry media pack comes down creating ‘shields’ and utilising them with extreme discipline.
Anticipating and neutralising media questioning by establishing independent enquiries and the refusing to comment on them, lest you be accused of interfering, is a tried and tested tactic of the modern Labour party and the careerists who have risen to control them in many jurisdictions.
Andrews’ creation of a ‘judicial enquiry’ to investigate the failure of his government’s hotel quarantine program has allowed him to effectively avoid any public scrutiny for one of the greatest failures in Australian political history.
The tactic only works if you put the perspicacity to anticipate the issue and put the shield up, and then have the discipline and control to use it without lowering it, even for one moment.
To watch Andrews stand in front of numerous press conferences and bat away literally hundreds of questions with the same answer is indicative of a man who understands the full ramifications of his failings, and knows any acknowledgment of them will mean the end of his political career.
The ‘shield’ requires a strong understanding of how the media operates and the ability to anticipate weaknesses. Andrews has learned that once the media acknowledges they are not going to get him to admit his failings, they will move on to the next topic.
Both Morrison and Andrews have finely tuned their skills over many years and whether you believe their motivations are benevolent or malicious you can’t but admire their capacity to go into battle for every day for what they believe.
A new digital portal dedicated to providing personal investors and advisors with news, education and insights about Australia’s $1.5 trillion fixed income sector will include the country’s first free, independent database of fixed income ETFs and managed funds.
Fixed Income News Australia (fixedincomenews.com.au) is a joint venture between RGC Media & Mktng and Australia’s leading fixed income commentator Elizabeth Moran. It is the second major news portal published by RGC following the launch of the wholly-owned MBA News Australia platform in 2015.
The FINA portal will combine daily news, expert insights and educational articles with a database of 30 fixed income focussed Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) and more than 110 fixed income managed funds.
Despite the size of the market, Australian private investors – including individuals, SMSFs and high net worth investors – hold less than 1% of all corporate bonds on issue, compared to almost 20% in the United States. The Federal Government is currently holding an enquiry into taxation and other impediments to the development of a retail corporate bond market.
RGC Media & Mktng Managing Director Ben Ready said FINA would fill the gap for an independent, content-driven, portal that speaks directly to the needs of personal investors.
“Fixed income investing has been the domain of professionals for too long,” he said. “Fixed income investing shouldn’t be scary or difficult and the more we educate people about their options the more people we can help to live a secure, sustainable retirement.”
FINA co-founder and Editorial Director Elizabeth Moran said despite the continued growth of self-managed superannuation and the number of high net worth individuals, Australians still lack a basic understanding of the value and importance of fixed income in a diversified portfolio.
“We are committed to providing the tools and confidence to allow more Australians to invest in fixed income,” Ms Moran said.
“We want to unravel the complexity of fixed income by using language that investors can understand. FINA is all about facilitating greater awareness of fixed income and giving investors the confidence to invest widely.”
“The recent volatility in the share market should be a wake up call to many investors who are over exposed to equities and want to invest in an asset class that provides much greater stability.”
FINA will take a particular focus on covering news and issues about the $10 billion fixed income Exchange Trade Fund (ETF) sector which has grown nearly 500% since 2015 and provides investors with a flexible, transparent and low cost way to increase their exposure to bonds.
Nearly 30 bond ETFs from more than 15 different providers are profiled as part of FINA’s FI ETF Finder.
Ms Moran teamed up with Brisbane-based digital communications, content and creative agency RGC Media & Mktng to create Fixed Income News Australia. RGC is also the publisher of Australia’s leading portals for MBA students, mbanews.com.au and online-mba.com.au.
About Elizabeth Moran
Liz Moran is a nationally-recognised expert in the fixed income asset class with more than 25 years in banking and financial institutions in Australia and the UK.
Prior to becoming an independent commentator in 2019 she spent more than 10 years as the Director of Education and Research at fixed income broker FIIG Securities, helping it grow from 15 staff in 2007 to a recognised brand name with over 6,000 clients and more than 130 staff in 2018. Prior to joining FIIG, Elizabeth worked as an Editor/Analyst for Rapid Ratings a quantitative credit rating agency, writing daily press releases for Bloomberg.
Elizabeth spent five years in London, three working as a credit rating analyst for NatWest Markets. She was part of a team of 30 analysts responsible for rating the Bank’s top 500 corporate clients. Her portfolios included general retailers and alcoholic beverages.
Elizabeth is a Director of the Australian Investors Association (AIA), a contributor to The Australian and the Income Strategist for InvestSmart’s Eureka Report.
RGC was founded in 2015 by Ben Ready and Brenton Gibbs. The company provides a range of digital and communication services including media and public relations, content, SEO, creative, lead generation, and digital marketing. RGC’s clients include some of Australia’s leading brands.
Australian businesses are embracing technology to keep their freight moving during the Coronavirus crisis with leading freight marketplace TruckIt.net reporting a lift in the use of ‘contactless delivery’.
While multiple states and territories have announced the closure of their borders, the freight and logistics industry has been deemed an essential service and are therefore exempt from border closures.
“These are tough times for everybody,” TruckIt founder Robbie Russell said. “But it is essential we keep goods moving around the country to keep our shops stocked and our businesses moving.”
“Spreading those goods around the country, without spreading COVID-19 is critical, which means our providers and their customers need to keep their distance.”
Contactless delivery allows TruckIt transport providers (truckies) to pick up and drop off a load without ever coming into contact with people. Adherence to contactless delivery means any touching between customers and drivers is strictly limited.
“A few simple steps and open communication means freight can be picked up and delivered without risking anyone’s health,” Mr Russell said.
“Both customers and providers on the TruckIt platform are encouraged to utilise contactless delivery wherever practically possible.”
TruckIt.net is at the forefront of Australia’s rapidly-growing on-demand freight industry that is becoming an increasingly important part of the overall $100 billion a year freight industry.
The digital marketplace matches people wishing to freight items (cars, furniture, pallets etc) with transport operators that include sole operators with one vehicle up to large multi-vehicle businesses.
Customers simply list their item on TruckIt.net for free and receive competitive quotes from interested vehicle operators. The booking, transaction and delivery process is managed directly between the freight owner and the operator.
Since it was first established 2012, TruckIt has taken nearly 500,000 listings with deliveries covering more than 50,000,000 kilometres. At any one time there is about $1.5 million worth of freight projects posted on the site and available for truckers to quote on.
The freight industry is one of the fastest growing in Australia with the volume of freight carried expected to grow by over 35 per cent between 2018 and 2040, an increase of 270 billion tonnes (bringing the total volume to just over 1,000 billion tonne kilometres), according to Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Economics (BITRE).
The speed and reach of the Coronavirus crisis will be felt for decades. While we are all struggling to assess the impact on us personally, we also have organisations that have obligations and responsibilities to staff, customers and other stakeholders.
Establishing and maintaining clear lines of communication with these stakeholders is one of the most important roles of leadership and management during this crisis. Conveying a sense of calm and control will position your business to return to normal as quickly as possible when (not if) the crisis ends.
Here are some simple things to remember while communicating.
Health & Wellbeing Is Your First Priority
While the long-term economic impact of the crisis is occupying a great deal of people’s thoughts, we are still in the middle of a major, global health emergency. Your first obligation is to create a safe workplace. The number of cases of COVID-19 in Australia is still rising and we must do everything possible to reduce the spread to save lives. ‘Flattening the curve’ is our collective responsibility.
Until we have the virus under control, all your actions and communications with stakeholders MUST put health and wellbeing first. Always provide the information and resources your stakeholders need to meet their social obligations to stopping Coronavirus.
Don’t be an Expert
The Federal Government, State Government and health authorities are moving quickly to provide detailed, authorative information about Coronavirus to the public. Do not rely on your own experts, your ‘sister’s brother who is a GP’ is not an expert. When advising staff and customers about how to respond to the crisis utilise the range of free information available.
Don’t be afraid to remind your stakeholders that there are still positives. The virus is under control in many countries and Australia has a strong, resilient economy with the capacity to absorb even the biggest shock.
The current health crisis is TEMPORARY, and we are days or weeks from getting on top of it. People need reminding that there are reasons to be optimistic so don’t be afraid to talk up your recent successes or the underlying strength of your industry.
The situation is changing on a daily basis. The last thing your stakeholders need is an information vacuum, which they will fill with information from unreliable sources and their imagination.
Create the systems, processes and disciplines to communicate on a daily (or twice daily) basis. Send an email to staff at the same time each day, either first thing in the morning or at 5.00pm each evening. Assign responsibility and make sure this communication comes from a trusted, senior executive who has the primary responsibility for managing the crisis.
Create a Dedicated Blog or Webpage
This crisis could go on for weeks or months. Creating a dedicated ‘warehouse’ where you can host and share information is one way to bring some order to the chaos. In a quickly moving situation, having a centralised location where updates and the latest information can be compiled is key to avoiding confusion. Many organisations have already created landing pages dedicated to providing information about the coronavirus and their mitigation efforts.
We recommend that clients place a link to this dedicated page on the homepage of their website. Key information to include on the page:
Information about whether or not any of your employees or locations have been exposed to the virus. While you should not identify employees, it is important to communicate whether there are any active or monitored cases tied to your organisation or facilities.
Details about your contingency plans. If you serve clients in-person, include information about whether your locations are open or not and how you will or will not serve clients if you close.
Preventative measures that are underway. If your organisation is encouraging employees to work from home, reduce nonessential travel, implement additional cleaning procedures or take any other precautions to minimise the risk of exposure, share these details.
Links to external resources like those listed above.
A statement that the webpage reflects the situation as it currently stands and as this is a rapidly evolving situation, your organisation will continue to evaluate the best course of action and update the page with the latest information as it is available.
Contact information for your primary media spokesperson and leadership team member overseeing Coronavirus preparedness.
Equip Your Staff
Successful communication starts with employees and internal stakeholders. They are always your best public relations people, and public relations people always do best with a good briefing.
Now is the time for CEOs and top executives to communicate with employees and stakeholders and reassure them by stating the steps the organisation is taking. He/she should record an organic (not highly produced) 60-second video—on a current model smart phone—describing the current state of affairs, steps being taken (to disinfect surfaces and protect people), what is planned next and why.
This video can supplement such written communications as direct mail pieces, emails, texts, and social posts.
Assign People to Create Content
You should quickly appoint a dedicated person or team to take charge of creating and updating your response content, including fact sheets, media statements, Q&As and EDMs
In a rapidly changing environment, it is vitally important all your communication is time stamped. What is true now, may not be tomorrow, so treat all communication as a ‘point in time’ exercise.
Don’t fuss too much about style guides or templates. Your stakeholders will forgive you if your documents are not up to your usual high standards of design and presentation. It is the substance that matters. It is OK to compromise on these to ensure timely and consistent communication.
Prepare for Media Enquiries
Consider the immediate development of media statements for key events/risks that you may be faced with. These statements can be provided to media who make an enquiry, be posted on your website and social media channels. They are important too for your employees and other stakeholders.
Consider the communications needed for the closure of an office or facility, staff member(s) contracting the illness, or unavailability of a key product or service.
Clear communication is necessary, as is the provision of updates as required. Ensure consistency in the nominated spokesperson and tone of voice.
Be Reactive and Engaged on Social Media
In the confusion of managing a business during a crisis, some of the simple things often get forgotten. Monitoring and responding to social media enquiries is sometimes the first victim of threat assessment.
It’s vital that your team are focused on social monitoring during a time of crisis. Any negative social media mentions should be dealt with immediately and with consistency. Any questions should be answered quickly and respectfully. There should be sections of your plan dedicated solely to social media crisis management.
We are all entering a new world, but many of the old rules for effective communication remain. Be open, honest and proactive. Your stakeholders will reward you for it.
Writing great content that generates traffic, engagement, backlinks, shares and leads is the holy grail of content marketing.
While there is still no simple recipe, one of the great benefits of the massive amount of content produced and the growth of analytical tools to review results has been a much better understanding of what works and what doesn’t.
We now know with more clarity than ever how to write great content.
The results were not great for lovers of short articles. It showed pages and blogs of more than 3,000 words getting 3x the traffic, 2x the shares and 3.5x more backlinks than articles of average length. Short articles (less than 200 words) are not shared at all 4.5x more often than long reads.
The length of headlines is also critical to engagement. Articles with long headlines (14+ words) get 3x more traffic, 2x more shares and 5x more articles with short headlines (7-10 words).
The reason for the popularity of long reads is contested by it is safe to assume that as the sheer number of content pieces grows, readers are increasingly being more selective and taking deeper dives.
The length of a ‘long’ article continues to get longer as well. In 2014, HubSpot tallied the averages of all of its 6,000+ blog posts and derived that there is a “positive correlation between high performing pages within organic search and word counts over 2,250 words”. Just five years ago SEMRush’s sweet spot rested right between 2,250 and 2,500 words.
If the thought of writing 3,000 (or 2,500) words makes you draw a deep breath, thankfully there is an alternative view.
According to research done by popular blogging platform, Medium, the ideal length for blog posts is 1,600 words (or seven minutes of reading). This result is based on an analysis of the “average total seconds spent on each post and compared this to the post length.” Their research found that up to the seven minute/1,600 wordmark, readers average time spent looking at the post increased, plateauing at the seven-minute mark, and quickly declining after that point.
While length is important, how you use it is also critical. The most important thing to remember is that quality content is what really matters. 5,000 words of dribble will not get anywhere near the result of 500 words of highly-targeted, useful content.
Are Listicles Still Important?
There is a reason listicles have spread like a rash across the internet. They work. According to SEMrush, listicles get the most shares and traffic (up to 2x more than other blog types), followed by guides and “how to” articles.
Why do they work? They allow our brain to digest information in a very digestible way. Modern media assaults us with a never ending stream of content. Our brains simply do not have the capacity to sort through the massive volume of information and store in a useful place for easy recall later.
“With the tsunami of incoming stuff, our brains will automatically try to find a sorting mechanism and try to make sense of it. So we naturally gravitate to the listicle. Finally! the brain says. A writer who has actually organized thoughts into some semblance of order. The brain sees organization and says, Right, let’s read it.”
Think About Structure
The structure of your article is also critical to understanding, as well as having incredible SEO value. SEMrush identified that well-structured articles with h2 and h3 are more likely to be high-performing. More than one in three articles with h2 and h3 tags have high performance in terms of traffic, shares and backlinks.
Header tags are an important on-page SEO factor because they’re used to communicate to the search engines what your website is about. Search engines recognise the copy in your header tags as more important than the rest. This starts with your h1 and works its way down in importance to the h2, h3 and so on. These tags will help support the overall theme or purpose of your page.
The content of your tags is just as critical as actually using them. Make sure you are stuffing your header tags with short-tail and long-tail keywords. As search engines crawl your site, they will pick up on the headers and recognise the keywords you are using as important.
This article has been structured to index for search traffic that is using the search term “Tips For Writing Great Content In 2020″
My h1 = <h1> Top Tips For Writing Great Content In 2020 </h1>
My h2 = <h2> Writing Great Content Means Lots Of Writing</h2>
My h3 = <h3>Are Listicles Still Important</h3>
As you can see, I used my h1 to capture the overall theme of the post since it represents what’s most important. I then used my h2 as a subheading to reinforce my h1 and overall theme. The same can be said about my h3 and how it relates to my other headings and overall theme.
The most important tip for writing great content (keywords!) is to give yourself plenty of time to write plenty of words, come up with a great headline, make it a list of something and use your header tags.
Leading Australian-owned book retailer Booktopia has celebrated its 16th birthday with a $20 million capital raising to enhance capacity and efficiency at its Sydney distribution centre.
The $20 million raise underscores investors’ confidence in the future of the e-commerce book industry which continues to grow strongly.
Booktopia posted revenues of $131m in FY19 and is currently on track to deliver revenues of $175 million in the 2020 calendar year.
The company’s market share by revenue is on track to edge ahead of the number one book retailer in Australia, Big W.
The equity was raised from a consortium of private investors led by Su-Ming Wong, Co-Founder & CEO of Champ Ventures (who will join the Board of Booktopia) and John Sampson, Founder & CEO of JBS Investments.
The founding shareholders retain majority control and Booktopia will continue to be an independent Australian-owned business.
The capital raise, completed with the assistance of AFSG Capital, also included a portion of long-term debt.
Mark Paton, Managing Director of AFSG Capital said Booktopia’s track record of rapid, profitable growth made for a compelling investment opportunity.
“The capital raised will go exclusively toward funding growth over the next few years and establishes a solid foundation for future capital market engagement,” he said.
The funds will be used in three key areas.
– Further investment in automation to scale its inbound and outbound capacity from 30,000 individual books per day to 60,000 per day; – Holding more titles at its 13,000 sqm Sydney Distribution Centre, growing its in-stock range as well as holding more units of the popular titles so they are ready-to-ship; and – Working capital.
Tony Nash, Booktopia’s CEO said: “Booktopia has come so far and the team is rightly proud to have built this 100% Australian owned business to scale from within our own internal resources. We are thrilled to have this round of funding in place. The Funding will allow us to accelerate our growth in a controlled and measured way by investing in our ability to deliver to Australian book consumers through expanded distribution infrastructure and stock. This has been a proven high growth and predictable model for us for 16 years and we are not about to change. We know that’s what our customers want from us.”
“It was very important we brought investors on board who can add value to the next phase of our journey. We are delighted to have such an experienced group who understand e-Commerce, retail and capital markets.”
Mr Nash said the recent acquisition of the University Co-operative Bookshops was fortuitous and was entirely separate from the current capital raising.
“We were already very well advanced with our private investors before The Co-op went into administration and as Tertiary Academic Sales were already a significant portion of our revenue it was deemed that if the numbers worked then we would purchase it from within our own financial capacity,” he said.
Brisbane-based, family-owned food manufacturing business Trisco Foods has been recognised for its commitment to taking locally developed products to the world.
Trisco was recently named Premier of Queensland’s Exporter of the Year 2019 at the annual Queensland Export Awards.
Trisco Foods produces world class food ingredients, such as syrups and sundaes, that are used here and abroad by leading food companies. It has a strong presence throughout the Asian region and has been exporting for many years. This year, Trisco opened a factory in Colorado Springs to service demand in the United States.
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the award was a deserved win for a family that was always innovating and always striving to provide high quality products and service to clients here and overseas.
The Premier said the company’s production and warehousing facility is located in Brisbane with many of the raw materials grown and processed locally.
“The first factory was a small building of two rooms attached to the rear of the family home in Hope Street, South Brisbane,” she said. “From these humble beginnings the business has grown into a huge success story and we’re extremely proud of this Queensland business from Brisbane taking on the world.”
Tristam Foods CEO Mike Tristram said the company had worked tirelessly in recent years to expand its international footprint through new product development and innovation.
“It is a cliché, but this is a genuine team effort with many people contributing to our success,” he said. “Our goal is quite simple. We want to create unique and innovative food solutions and take them into new markets, both in Australia, the US and across the globe.”
The Tristram family is well known among older Queenslanders as the name behind the soft drink with the marketing slogan, “Say Tristrams Please”. The brand and soft drink business were sold to Cadbury Schweppes in 1970 when the Trisco Foods company began and the family concentrated on the ingredients business.
After more than 140 years manufacturing a range of food and beverage products in Brisbane, the company earlier this year unveiled plans its first offshore facility in Colorado Springs.
The facility will allow the company to aggressively pursue greater market share for its highly successful Precise Thick-N range of instant liquid thickeners that help maintain the health of people suffering from swallowing problems and neurological-related dysphagia.
The plant will initially produce products from the Precise Thick-N range with up to 75 people to be employed as production ramps up. Over the next five years the company plans to develop and manufacture new products.
The Precise Thick-N range of instant liquid thickeners make soft food and liquids easier to swallow without impacting the nutritional benefits or taste. After just two years the product has achieved strong market penetration and displaced traditional powder-based thickeners in many aged care facilities and hospitals around the country.
Trisco’s global headquarters will remain in Brisbane. The Colorado Springs plant will be used not only to serve the current domestic market, but also have the capability to supply potential new export markets in Europe and South America in the near future.
Privately-owned developer Orchard Property Group has completed the acquisition of a prime 34-hectare development-ready site at Ripley, in the heart of the Ripley Valley Priority Development Area (PDA).
The acquisition takes Orchard’s total pipeline of lots owned and under control to more than 2,000 across five different projects around South East Queensland.
The property at 160 Daleys Road, Ripley, was acquired from a group of investors for $11 million. The company has had the site under contract for more than 12 months and completed settlement in late August.
The site includes an existing Development Approval for a new masterplanned community with 426 lots. Orchard intends to reconfigure the existing approval to increase the yield to 440 lots ahead of a launch in 2020.
The sale was negotiated by Ray White Special Projects’ Tony Williams and Mark Creevey.
Orchard Property Group Managing Director Brent Hailey said the company had long-held ambitions to acquire a site in the Ripley PDA.
“The Ripley Valley is one of the largest urban growth areas in Australia and will eventually be home to a new city nearly as large as Toowoomba with a population of 120,000 people and 50,000 new homes,” he said.
“The PDA has been incredibly successful since it was declared in 2010 and our expectations are that it will continue to grow for the foreseeable future.”
Orchard has also secured a $7.2 million Catalyst Infrastructure Program grant from Economic Development Queensland (EDQ) to undertake a major upgrade of Binnies Road, Ripley, to not only provide access to their site but to provide a much-needed access to a number of properties at the western end of the Ripley PDA.
Construction of the new road is due to begin by the end of the year with the project expected to commence marketing early in 2020.
The new project will be Orchard’s second largest, following the launch earlier this year of the 650-lot, $120 million Pebble Creek project at South Maclean. The company recently completed sales at PineVue @ Maudsland (110 lots) and has other active projects at Ormeau, Narangba and Caboolture.
Ray White Special Projects Tony Williams said Orchard had secured a very strategic site after successfully navigating a range of issues to unpack the development potential of the opportunity.
“The property provided one of the few remaining parcels in the Valley which offers scale and with the benefit of negotiating the catalyst infrastructure agreement, Orchard have fast tracked their entry to the Ripley market,” he said.
Mr Creevey said land parcels with scale that had approvals already in place were in high demand throughout South East Queensland.
“The interest levels we’re witnessing for approved development sites are at the highest we’ve seen in a long time due to the scarcity of quality offerings,” Mr Creevey said.
Mr Hailey said the company remained optimistic about the south east Queensland land market.
“With low interest rates expected to continue for the foreseeable future and continued steady population growth in the south east, the fundamentals for the land market remain quite strong,” he said.
“There is plenty of competition but with the right product, in the right place at the right price there is plenty of demand and opportunities for success.
“As with all our projects, we will be focused on creating a vibrant place to live by providing exceptional amenity, connectivity and urban design.”
News organisations and their journalists have been competing for consumers’ eyes and ears for hundreds of years. While the media industry has been turned on its head in the last 20 or so years, many of the principles that underpin competitive journalism have remained unchanged.
Understanding these principles and applying them to your brand’s content strategy will dramatically improve the efficiency and effectiveness of your content.
The concept of a ‘brand newsroom’ is not new. However, unless your newsroom lives and breathes traditional newsroom values it is merely a content production studio. Here are five principles you can apply to your content strategy.
1. Deadline Discipline
While the news cycle for daily and weekly newspapers have changed significantly since the proliferation of online news sites and a digital-first approach, the tyranny of deadlines remains.
Regardless of whether you are the newest cadet at your local weekly paper or a senior columnist at the biggest paper in the country – your day is ruled by deadlines. Some are hourly, some are daily, some are weekly (Saturday editions) and some monthly (liftouts).
Newspaper deadlines are immovable, intractable and policed by irascible editors.
The best content, like news, is fresh. A piece of content that’s not timely can quickly become irrelevant. Building a culture of deadline discipline to your brand newsroom will greatly improve the consistency and timeliness of your outputs.
2. Understand Your Audience
Newsrooms have got creating quality content en masse down to a fine art because it’s their raison d’être. They know that to really get people reading, their content needs to be audience-centric.
A few years ago the Financial Times launched a new digital data dashboard to help journalists and editors in the newsroom better understand their audience and how people interact with stories on the website.
The tool, called Lantern, integrates audience data collected across the entire organisation, which already exists but usually serves business or commercial purposes.
Using Lantern, anyone in the newsroom will be able to find out how their story is doing in real time, but also how the audience engages with it in the longer term.
While developing custom monitoring software is beyond most brands, building a system to monitor traffic, engagement and feedback is critical to understanding your audience and constantly evolving your content to reflect the needs of your audience.
3. Employee Journalists
With so many of the skills and disciplines required to develop highly engaging content learnt in the newsroom, it is little wonder journalists often make the best content producers. Only journalists who have spent a considerable amount of time in a newsroom understand the agility and flexibility required to produce great content on a consistent basis under tight timelines.
Journalists also have specific training in writing great headlines, undertaking thorough research, prioritising accuracy, separating content from fluff, building relationships, writing in news style and understanding complex issues quickly. All of these are invaluable to a brand newsroom.
READ MORE:10 Skills That Make Journalists the Secret Weapon for Your Content Team
4. Apply News Values
Journalists commonly use six values to determine how newsworthy a story or elements of a story are. Knowing the news values can help a journalist make many decisions, including:
– What information to give first in a news article, and in the lede (the lead paragraph)
– Which articles to display on a newspaper’s front page
– What questions to ask in an interview
The six news values are:
Timeliness- Recent events have a higher news value than less recent ones.
Proximity- Stories taking place in one’s hometown or community are more newsworthy than those taking place far away.
Prominence- Famous people and those in the public eye have a higher news value than ordinary citizens.
Uniqueness/oddity- A story with a bizarre twist or strange occurrences. “Man bites dog” instead of “dog bites man.”
Impact- Stories that impact a large number of people may be more newsworthy than those impacting a smaller number of people.
Conflict- “If it bleeds, it leads.” Stories with strife, whether it’s actual violence or not, are more interesting.
The newsworthiness of a story is determined by a balance of these six values. There is no set formula to decide how newsworthy a story is, but in general, the more of these six values a story meets, the more newsworthy it is.
Not every piece of content needs to win a Pulitzer. Volume counts. Recent research by HubSpot found a clear and direct correlation between the number of monthly blog posts and inbound traffic.
Sometimes your job is simply to act as a gatekeeper and curator of other people’s content. Too many brand newsrooms put too much emphasis on creating ‘original’ content.
Sometimes finding and reconextualising a third-party’s content is just as valuable to toy your audience, but infinitely less time consuming and onerous.
For most brands, relying on the product alone is not enough to sustain the ongoing volume required to build and engage with an audience. They need to establish a rich extrinsic brand narrative that can be continuously refreshed.
An effective content strategy is build on the continuous development and broad-based publishing of highly engaging content that builds awareness and drives action.
Delivering an effective content strategy, particularly on a constrained budget, is all about consistency and quality. Learning how newsrooms do this is the first step to creating your own brand newsroom.