Silicon Paddock is the sister site to our flagship publication, Startup Daily. The initiative launched in 2016 after our founder Mat Beeche attended a pitching event in Wagga Wagga and decided that a spotlight needed to be cast upon the innovative talent living in regional Australia.
There are over 1.3 million businesses across regional Australia. Although 95% of their owners have access to the internet, only 48% of them have an online presence. With the rollout of the NBN and advancements in technology, regional Australia is more connected than ever. Now’s the time for entrepreneurs to think globally.
Silicon Paddock will wear two hats in driving a culture that embraces the digital economy throughout regional Australia. Firstly, the platform provides task-focused, straight-forward educational content to enable rural business owners to complete daily tasks and learn new systems and processes.
Secondly our content amplifies stories of country-based entrepreneurs, tethering these businesses to the wider startup and national tech scene, government and corporates.
The Silicon Paddock Festival is our flagship event; it is where conference meets masterclass. During the two day event attendees in person and of course online will hear from both local and international speakers as they are interviewed by the Silicon Paddock team and then impart their wisdom and experience onto the audience via a series of specialist masterclasses or workshops. Created and curated specifically for the Silicon Paddock community.
We’re excited to bring the world to Regional Australia and Regional Australia to the world.
AN EDUCATIONAL PLATFORM.
For users the platform is free. As we start to build out more specialised educational content in the future there will of course be a cost associated with being able to access Silicon Paddock’s premium content.
We expect this cost to remain below AUD $10.00 per month. We expect that within the first 12 months we should reach 100,000 active monthly users (registered users) and that around 2% – 2.5% of those users will be paid premium subscribers.
For existing partners and new brands wanting to target regional business owners and decision makers Silicon Paddock has allowed us to strengthen our lead generation abilities for clients.
Before being able to fully engage in any of the educational content on the platform users are required to sign into the platform, which can be done directly via the video before it begins to broadcast the lesson.
Brands have the ability to partner with our platform for one single task-focused lesson or work with us to create a targeted series of online workshop content powered by their company.
For brands committed to supporting regional business for the long term, we also offer a limited number of premium or foundation partnerships on the Silicon Paddock platform. Australia Post and MYOB Technologies are two examples of companies that are currently active long-term partners.
In addition to aligning with educational content on the platform, we can work with our partners to create stand out content marketing in a variety of different formats whether that be written, video, audio or even a live event.
There are over 1.3 million small businesses across regional Australia. These business owners now have faster internet rolling out in their regions due to the rollout of the NBN and that means that their businesses are now connected to the world – postcodes are no longer a barrier for customer acquisition.
This also means that there is a huge opportunity for companies looking to target small business owners and startup founders. Rural is a segment that is not proactively marketed to in the Australia business ecosystem right now, which means there is less competition for your brand – you get to talk directly to a new audience of engaged professionals that want to grow their companies, hire new employees and upgrade their systems and workspaces to compete globally in the digital economy.
This is an example of a short-form podcast series called ‘ALWAYS ON’ that we created for eBay.
We can also create bespoke content series powered by your brand targeting particular segments of our audience across the Startup Daily and Silicon Paddock sites. All content created for brands not only enjoys distribution across our online assets, it is also sent directly to the inboxes of over 7,000 subscribers to our daily newsletter ‘Crop and Code’.
This is an example of a feature story of a new startup called Run Beat powered by Australia Post. The series highlights finalists for the Australia Post Regional Pitchfest that was held in Bendigo last year and positions their brand as supporters of regional innovators.
We also produce branded and original video content series. At the moment we are in the stages of planning a series about regional Australian business owners and innovators called Paddock Chat. This series will also have a sister podcast of the same name.
Video is a huge focus for our company in 2017. There are options for brands to either align and support original video series produced by Shoe String Media or we can produce something specifically for your company – we will work with you from a creative standpoint from start to finish on a series that is bespoke to your brand. You will also be able to use the content however you like, where ever you like after it has launched across our channels.
Below is an example of an original content series that we launched last year called PoliTech. The premise was to sit down and have deep-dive conversations with political figures about technology and innovation and of course get their opinions on whether or not government was doing a good enough job in creating a culture of innovation in Australia. We even had television presenter David Koch guest host an episode that we shot at Parliament House with then Innovation Minister, Chistopher Pyne.
The video series was nominated for an Australian Technology Journalism Award in 2016.
In addition to being a platform of world class educational content for the task economy, Silicon Paddock will also be hitting the road will be part of some planned events targeting small business and of course holding some of our own pop-up style events throughout regional Australia. In May of this year we will also be holding two key events in Wagga Wagga, NSW – the birthplace of the Silicon Paddock idea.
Silicon Paddock Conference – Masterclass. This event will be held with an intimate live audience and will be broadcast live online where working with councils and industry groups throughout regional Australia we are aiming to attract a minimum digital audience of 2,500 to join in our conference and masterclass style event that will run from 12.00pm – 5.00pm on Wednesday the 24th of May 2017.
The event page will be live for this event soon with a list of world-class local and international speakers with ‘been-there-done-that’ experience in key areas of business that will share their story and then facilitate a masterclass style session on a particular topic that has been key in helping their business grow.
We want everyone both live in person and via our live digital channels to not just be inspired by hearing the story of a founder but walk away from the event with something tangible they can implement into their business straight away. We want to see Australian regional businesses grow revenue, reach and provide opportunities to the generations of rural-based university students graduating and looking for jobs in their field of study.
Business growth literally reshapes a community – a great example is Beechworth, Victoria. In a community of only 2,000 residents a number of opportunities are beginning to exist in disciplines like marketing, public relations, design and web development. This is because small businesses like The Beechworth Bakery, Beechworth Honey and Bridge Road Brewers are now becoming nationally recognised brands, are attracting global customer bases and now need particular skill sets in their companies in order to continue the growth. In turn this motivates other local businesses to follow in their footsteps and keeps talented young people in the country because opportunity now exists.
Serendipity Event Series – Country Picnic. This networking event kicks off with an open mic – interested attendees have one minute to take the microphone, introduce themselves and quite simply ask for help.
Looking for funding? A tech co-founder? Maybe you just want to connect with a fellow business owner to shoot the shit occasionally. Odds are there will be someone in the crowd that fits the bill. Post event we measure the impact – short term and long term. This event will roll out across various communities in 2017, each with its own unique theme and location.
There are opportunities for brands to support these events, giving them grassroots access to both metro and regional business owners and talent.
Below is an example of a networking event that was powered by payments platform Braintree. We targeted the Top 50 key people in the ecommerce sector in Australia for the guest list. The attendees said it was one of the best events they have ever been to as far as the quality of networking is concerned and our client was able to use the opportunity to market their services and gain feedback directly from the mouth of their target customer.
AUSTRALIA POST REGIONAL PITCHFEST.
Silicon Paddock Partners will also gain exclusive access to regional communities via the Australia Post Regional Pitchfest series of events that will be taking place around Australia this year. In 2017 Australia Post are not bringing onboard any commercial partners for the event. But being a foundation partner of Silicon Paddock, the organisation are allowing other partners of our platform to be part of our exhibit at each of the event locations:
+ McLaren Vale
+ Wagga Wagga (Finale)
The events begin on the 7th of June and then finish on the 18th of August with the finalists from each of the state and territory heats battling it out in Wagga.
The Silicon Paddock team will be road tripping the entire way and as we do will be filming and recording content throughout regional Australia. Talking to rural customers of our Silicon Paddock partners and creating a behind the scenes web-series which will be broadcast via our platforms as well as the Australia Post website which attracts over 9 million visitors per month.
There are opportunities for brands to align themselves with this road trip. As a sponsor of our Silicon Paddock: On The Road Again original web-series or via us creating a bespoke content series for your brand along the way.
For our circulation numbers across our sites, pricing and further information on our other online platforms visit Startup Daily for Brands.
To find out more information about how you can partner with Silicon Paddock and get in front of 1.3 million regional Australian business owners email us at firstname.lastname@example.org