Off the back of one of the most volatile years in business, it is with a small measure pride that the M10 Team can lay claim to a multi-decade innings.
Starting out in the early Noughties, Gold Coast-based brand marketing and PR agency, M10 Collective, has grown into a multi-discipline enterprise, repping some of south east Queensland’s most prolific businesses.
Managing Director Emma Bain, took a leap of faith at the age of 26 after finishing up with what was then Warner Village Theme Parks to ‘hang a shingle’.
“There was so much happening on the Coast in the early noughties and content and comms was just taking a foothold in the commercial marketing mix,” said Emma.
“PR has always been so much more than ‘just a press release’ and this combined with our background in brand marketing has evolved into our suite of services that has shaped our company and reputation today.”
Emma said the calculated risk to start a business 16 years ago, was underpinned by some solid support, with friends and colleagues referring work along the way.
“They say it takes a village to raise a child, and the same could be said of small business and we have always enjoyed a lot of strong support locally. Our region has a very collegial approach to business, especially in our sector.”
Emma said it was the combination of good timing and a solid and reliable service output, that has helped build M10, growing a loyal and varied client base over the years.
Based in Southport, M10 has been the agency of record nationally for locally grown coffee juggernaut, Zarraffa’s Coffee, for the past twelve years.
“Many of our clients are long term and we have enjoyed growing with them over the years, accruing key commercial knowledge to enhance our work, year on year.”
“When we started with Zarraffa’s it had 24 stores and today it turns over $150 million. What started in 1996 as a small business dream operating in the backstreets of Southport, now has a footprint over 75 plus stores across greater Queensland, New South Wales and Western Australia – it’s remarkable.”
With a range of clients across the years, M10 has experience in industries such as hospitality, tourism, hotels, franchising, technology, The Arts, theme parks, FMCGs, retail, childcare, shopping centres and more.
“We definitely have some fun with our work,” said Emma. “But it’s our ability to operate successfully in what most people term the ‘frou-frou’ of PR and marketing, while delivering credible, reliable comms, business and crisis support at the other end of the spectrum.”
Other major clients include the marketing management of the $50 million Distillery Road Market development at Beenleigh and Edge Early Learning Centres, among others, and M10 is also the PR agency of record for HOTA – Home of the Arts.
“HOTA has been a revelation; we’ve worked alongside the team for the past two years and the diversity of offering, the growth of the Arts all right here on the GC is incredible. Combine that with major investment in Arts infrastructure, including the new Green Bridge and the multi-million Gallery precinct, and we are approaching ‘next level’ in this space.”
2020 has brought its challenges to many sectors affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, with an unpredictable flux in the requirement for corporate and consumer communications across several sectors.
“It’s been an interesting year for business; tough in so many ways but there has been a huge uptick in communications – crisis, retail, PR, stakeholder and more. It’s kept us on our toes, with a natural contraction in consulting requirements that has been balanced by an increase in seasoned MarComms output.”
“What the next year, five or ten will bring is anyone’s guess at this stage, but there is no doubt content creation, communication and, most importantly, clarity of message will be a strategic factor and competitive edge for those commercial sectors that are interested in growing.”
“In terms of the M10 journey, we’re optimistic for new growth and commercial pathways that require experienced MarComms consulting support to shine a light on and protect brands, while increasing market share.
“So, in many ways, while we are 16 years young, it also feels like it’s just the beginning.”