Launch Speech by GDR’s CEO Kim Lykissas

Daizy Gedeon
Good evening and welcome. This is a very exciting and auspicious night for us to not only unveil our new premises but to showcase our new look and feel.

I joined GDR seven months ago and have been delighted to hit the ground running. I chose GDR based on the strong and growing business it was but more importantly – on Daizy’s vision for the company and most importantly – her perspective on the opportunities for growth in our industry.

While many businesses claim to have customers at the heart of their business, Daizy and the GDR team were committed to ensuring not only was this their philosophy but that the customer engagement and business model supported this.

Two outstanding things have happened this year – we have done a full strategic review of the business which I will talk you through and we have moved to our brilliant new offices – placing us much closer to many of our customers and the inner-city Sydney creative hub.

Before I talk through our re-positioning I feel it is important to create context around our thinking. We have clearly identified the core group we will have the most impact helping are SMEs. Small to medium business is the pulse of the Australian economy and a group where strong partnerships are key.

There is often no clear owner of end to end marketing process with SMEs. They are sometimes too small to have a Marketing Manager owning the process so trusted and dedicated marketing partnerships are powerful and create enormous value. There are also limited companies that can undertake the full process from Strategy to Execution for an SME at price that works for them.

Large agencies are often too big and expensive and often not full service – they are traditionally not set up for SME’s. Marketing Strategy businesses provide front end of the solution but rarely execute and are also often expensive. Online businesses have template driven systems but don’t allow for the unique highly local nature of SME’s – they also focus on digital solutions and forget strategic planning and creative execution for traditional channels.

We live in the specialty age – where marketers are very sub-segmented and integration on an affordable scale is key. There is no one company in Australia at the moment that owns this space – and we hope GDR will become the face and voice of small to medium business marketing in Australia over the next 12 months.

Let me pose this question to you?

Where can a small to medium business owner go to get clear, effective assistance to grow their business through marketing? We have identified this gap in the market – a full-service business that can take a smaller customer from strategy through to execution on a manageable budget.

Our research indicates that small to medium business owners are typically time poor focusing most of their time on running their business. They want to know about how to grow their businesses through marketing but most likely can’t justify hiring an expert, and can’t or don’t want to invest in becoming an expert themselves.

If they could find an organisation they could trust, with a track record of success, that truly understood their needs and could manage the marketing process from end to end for them at a reasonable price – they would jump at the chance. This is the power of partnerships – this is the vision for GDR – to be that partner.

There are over two million actively trading businesses in the country and 99% of them are SME’s with 1 to 199 employees.

Why shouldn’t smaller business have access to quality marketing services in the same way that the larger corporates do? This is our unique proposition and we feel this is worth celebrating. We are an SME ourselves and we are passionately committed to this sector.

The next 12 months will be an interesting time for not only the Australian but also the global economy. Out vision is to help businesses thrive in their respective space and weather the storms. Some would say the best time to increase your marketing spend is when your competitors are cutting theirs.

At the heart of our strategy is strengthening and growing our core business whilst adding complimentary services that our customers value. We will never forget where we have come from – traditional channels such as design, print and distribution still form a vital part of what we do for our customers today. If you think about it – print and distribution was the original mobile.

But we recognize that to achieve our vision to be Australia’s leading SME marketing business, we must strengthen and broaden our service offering.

GDR now helps customers is six key areas:

– Marketing Strategy and Audits
– Ideation
– Creative including Design and Content Creation
– Print and Digital Production including Websites, Social Media, eDM, blogs, SEO, SEM and Video Production
– Delivery through all channels
– Measurement and Reporting

In the last few months we have added key personnel to the business to help us achieve our goals and I’m proud to say that we have one of the groups of people I have worked with.

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