Are you thinking of starting a business or have a fairly new business?  Confused about all the details you need to get across to run it properly? 

We’ve handpicked five local business professionals and asked them to give you the absolute essentials that you need to know as a small business start-up. 

Topics include:

  • How the right structure and a good business plan will pave the way to success
  • Essential agreements needed by business start-ups
  • How to attract, engage and close customers
  • How to make sure your website is built right, the first time.
  • How to harness the power of social media marketing

Date:  Wednesday 25 November
Time:  5.30pm to 8pm (pre-drinks and canapes included)
Location:  Burleigh Heads Surf Lifesaving Club, Goodwin Terrace
Cost:  $29 and bring a friend free



How the right structure and a good business plan will pave the way to success
Mark Hamawi, Director, Trak Accountants

Small business is tough and two key fundamentals to get right are the structure you establish at the start and the plan you follow.  If you get these right then you increase your chances of success tremendously. Mark will cover:

  • Overview of business structures options
  • The pros and cons of structure options
  • Essential info to include in your business plan
  • Financial forecasting basics to stay on target


Essential agreements needed by business start-ups
Peter Snelgar, Senior Property and Commercial Lawyer, Attwood Marshall Lawyers

The legal foundations of your business are as important as any other aspect.  The most crucial thing to remember is that you must document all agreements correctly. When starting a business of any size most people are either lost amongst a jungle of unnecessary paperwork, or have no idea what should be put in place.  Ensuring that you have the correct paperwork tailored to your situation will save you time, money and stress.  Peter will cover:

  • Overview of the common types of agreements for small business
  • Importance of agreements
  • Issues that can occur without agreements
  • How to develop agreements


How to attract, engage and close customers
Matt Sully, Marketing Strategist, Flagship Digital     

  • Where are your prospects and how can you make them notice you?
  • How to engage with qualified leads
  • How to use sales techniques to build rapport, gain trust and close the business


How to make sure your website is built right, the first time.
Jodi Brown, Co-founder, Buzzword

Your website is your central hub. All your online and offline marketing activities are usually directed back to your website where you aim to convert customers. Having a website built properly from the start is critical to your success.  Jodi will cover the following:

  • Usability – Always look at your site from the perspective of the user
  • Experience – Make sure your web developer has experience in building sites like yours
  • The Team – Does your developer have a team or do they outsource.
  • Can I edit my site after it is complete?
  • How do I measure results?


How to harness the power of social media marketing
Melanie Brennan, Director, BlueBee Social

Most businesses know they need to be on social media these days as part of their marketing, but many struggle to know where to be, what to post, how to build engagement and how to make that turn into sales.  Melanie will cover:

  • How social media generates leads, and
  • The essential steps needed to build a strong social media marketing strategy.



Mark Hamawi, Director, Trak Accountants


Managing Director and Certified Practicing Accountant (CPA) at Trak Accountants, Varsity Lakes on the Gold Coast, Australia.

At Trak Accountants we specialise in tax and accounting services for small businesses.  We are a family business and share our family values with our clients.

As well as having over 20 years’ international experience as a commercial and public practice accountant in various industries, Mark has also been lucky enough to have gained experience building businesses in the finance, imports, food and beverage and leisure industries.

Having the business acumen and the accounting experience enables him to provide real advice to clients, not just from a tax or numbers perspective, but as in-depth advice that relates to each commercial situation.

At Trak, we offer a free review for business and individuals.  There is no obligation and it is an opportunity to get some free advice and chat to Mark in person.  Give Mark a call or chat to him after the seminar.
0414 644 046


Peter Snelgar, Senior Property and Commercial Lawyer, Attwood Marshall Lawyers

Peter joined our Property and Commercial team as a Senior Solicitor in September 2015 following a move back to his home state of Queensland from Newcastle in New South Wales.

Peter was admitted as a Solicitor of the Supreme Court of New South Wales on 27 May 2011 after studying law at the University of Newcastle.

Peter has extensive experience in all forms of commercial and property law but has an unashamed passion for commercial property transactions such as leasing. During his time as a solicitor, Peter has negotiated and documented leases ranging from the tiniest of corner shops to leases worth well in excess of $2million per annum to government authorities.

Although beginning his practice in New South Wales, Peter has now familiarised himself with the laws of Queensland to the same exacting standards as New South Wales, and is a leader in his practice areas in both jurisdictions.

In addition to his extensive knowledge of the legalities and documentation required in commercial transactions, Peter always stresses the importance of knowing and understanding the needs of his clients. In his practice Peter always runs with the motto “my job is to get the deal done”, as taught by his mentor in Newcastle, a very successful lawyer and businessman.

Throughout his time as a solicitor Peter has worked for many high profile companies and celebrity clients and prides himself on the level of support and service that he is able to provide to them.
0438 402 795


Matt Sully, Marketing Strategist, Flagship Digital

Matt Bio Pic copy

Matt is a motivated, passionate and engaging sales professional.

After a career in the British secret service, Matt left the UK to build a life in Australia. He describes himself as the “accidental salesman”, after being the last man standing in a large corporate downsizing.

Matt has studied some of the best sales people in the world and has developed his own style of how to take these learnings and bring them to other business owners who find themselves as the “accidental salesman”.

His talk will focus on how to find your target audience, how to engage with them and finally how to close them and make them into raving fans customers.
0467 737 822


Jodi Brown, Co-founder, Buzzword

IMG_5333 (533x800)Jodi is the co-founder of Buzzword. He has been in the IT / Web industry for almost 20 years both from a technical viewpoint as well as the creative. Jodi has a unique blend of technical ability and personal skills enabling him to quickly identify problems and explain them in non technical terms which keeps customers coming back.

Jodi has a passion for small business and has been networking on the Gold Coast for over 10 years. he has held the position of President of the Nerang Chamber of Commerce and was on the steering committee that amalgamated the Gold Coast Central Chamber of Commerce. He is a regular presenter at the National College of Business speaking on Internet Marketing.


Melanie Brennan, Director, BlueBee Social

Melanie is the Owner and Director of BlueBee Social.  She has had over 20 years experience in the environment industry communicating, marketing and coordinating projects to audiences from all walks of life – such as local community for event marketing, to Federal government for environmental reporting.

In 2012 Mel started a Marketing and Communications business called ‘BlueBee Consulting’, and in 2014 she narrowed her businesses focus to specialise in social media marketing.   Mel has a Bachelor of Science, a Certificate IV in Small Business Management, Advanced Facilitation Training, is a Hootsuite Certified Professional and is also a Climate Reality Leader of Al Gore’s Climate Reality Project.
0421 252 153