B-News December 2012
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Welcome to the first edition of B-News for participating businesses registered with the NSW Seniors Card program since the delivery of the 2013 Seniors Directory to 800,000 Seniors Card holders’ homes.

There are now in excess of 2,000 participating businesses offering a range of unique offers and discounts to over 1,027,800 Seniors Card holders.

In this edition of the B-News we will be focussing on a range of tools that will assist you improving your business marketing and processes so that you can make the most of your engagement with Seniors Card holders.

We have also created our November 2012 member profile report for you, this shows you the information that is available to access on Seniors Card holders and as a result the types of criteria by which you are able to target Seniors Card holders for Direct Mail or electronic Direct Mail campaigns. Please see here for the report.

If you have any interesting news or information that you feel may assist other participating businesses to improve their bottom line or the way in which they engage with Seniors Card holders, please feel free to email them through to the Seniors Card team via the business email address business@seniorscard.nsw.gov.au

The Seniors Card team also encourages you to recommend participation in the program to any businesses that you may deal with, which may have a product or service from which Seniors Card holders may benefit if a unique offer or discount was provided.

Remember the more businesses that register to participate in the program will increase the number of seniors that actively use the program, which ultimately increases your ability to gain benefit from Seniors Card holders.

NSW Seniors Directory 2013  

The NSW Seniors Directory 2013 has now been delivered to Seniors Card holders and participating businesses across NSW.

We are really pleased with the result and invite all of you to take a look at them here, if you have not already looked at your hard copy.

The Seniors Card team are really excited with the refreshed and enhanced format of the 2013 edition of the Seniors Directory.

Updates include a change in name from Discount Directory to Seniors Directory, which communicates to Seniors Card holders that there is much more value to be obtained from the Directory . A fresh design that is underpinned by the philosophy of making the Seniors Directory more attractive, so that it will be left on coffee tables, by the phone or in handbags ensuring regular access and more active usage.

The annual NSW Seniors Directory is a companion of the Seniors Card program. It presents a wide range of government services and business discounts for NSW seniors and is the only publication directly mailed to over 800,000 Seniors Card member households in the State.

The Directory supports the NSW Government’s Ageing Strategy for a healthy, vibrant, and active ageing population. The 2013 edition has information on:

• Discounted products and services
• A whole of government approach to ageing
• Relevant State and Federal agencies
• Important consumer rights and protections
• Planning for financial security and investment
• Tools for living longer, healthier, smarter and safer lives.

The NSW Seniors Card program is free to join. A senior must be aged 60 or over, a permanent resident of NSW and work no more than 20 hours a week in paid employment to be eligible .
Note: Income is averaged across the previous 12 months prior to the card holders application, and is not specifically a set weekly earnings.

If you have not yet received your copy of the 2013 edition of the NSW Seniors Directory, please go to:


If you would like any additional copies of the 2013 Seniors Directory, please call our contact centre on 1300 364 758.

Without the participation of over 2,000 businesses across NSW in offering a range of unique offers or discounts the Seniors Directory would not have been produced. The Seniors Card team would like to acknowledge and thank all participating businesses involved for their ongoing participation and support.
Business Spotlight  


“Senior Shopper is an independent discount shopping service that aims to help Senior Shopper cardholders obtain the best price on a range of products and services, this for the cost of a local call anywhere in NSW.

Our research tells us that seniors are the wealthiest group of consumers in the Australian marketplace; however they spend their money wisely and take the time to ensure that they receive value for money and good quality customer service.

As a business participating in the NSW Seniors Card program we have direct access to over 1 million seniors, the fastest growing demographic, through a range of paid marketing opportunities. We recently recommended the Seniors Card marketing channels to one of our clients, Zurich Financial Services. They’ve made use of the Direct Mail option, sent out to 60,000 Seniors Card members matching their data selection criteria.

Brand loyalty is key to business success and we have found this especially so with this audience. Each year for successive years Senior Shopper has placed a Full Page colour advertisement in the annual NSW Seniors Directory. Advertising in the Seniors Directory gives Senior Shopper year-round visibility, in an attractive format and at an affordable price. We recommend that other businesses join with Seniors Card to gain access to its valuable market and effective marketing avenues.”
Smart Online Business Tips  

For small to medium businesses (by NSW Fair Trading)

Online retail sales are growing rapidly each year with Australians currently spending more than $11 billion annually. Almost three quarters of these sales are made with Australian retailers.

To help small to medium businesses better understand what consumers are looking for when shopping online, NSW Fair Trading commissioned research into online shopping practices.

Lower prices, convenience and wider range are the key drivers attracting a growing number of shoppers online. For business, the prospect of accessing a wider customer base and the convenience of online shopping were the main motivators.

Fair Trading found there are a number of steps that your business can take to help give your customers a positive online shopping experience every time. Here is a checklist and some handy hints to help your business be online smart:

• Do you offer a secure payment method?
PayPal is the first choice for 59% of consumers as they felt it indicates the site is safe and secure. Your business may be missing out by not offering this payment method. Credit cards came a close second for online shopping (55%).

• Do you promote the protections provided by the Australian Consumer Law?
An important point of difference with your competitors who are based overseas or private sellers, as well as online auctions such as eBay is that your domestic customers are protected by the Australian Consumer Law (ACL).

• Do you have online security procedures in place to protect your customers?
Online security is the key barrier for consumers to shopping online. Ensure your website is secure and let your customers know what measures you are taking to protect their banking and personal details.

• Do you clearly state the terms and conditions for the delivery of goods?
Consumers generally expect goods to arrive in about 2-3 business days. Delays, lost goods and damaged goods are the most common consumer complaints.

• Do you provide sufficient detail in the description of your goods and services?
A key barrier to shopping online is not knowing exactly what is being purchased. Goods being unsuitable, of lower quality than expected, or not matching the description provided online is also common complaint from consumers.

• Is your website smartphone and tablet friendly?
The majority of consumers shop online using a computer or laptop but smartphones, tablets and other internet enabled devices are used by over a quarter of online shoppers.

To browse the research findings and for a full list of smart tips for online businesses visit the Businesses section of the NSW Fair Trading website.

Planning for Business Success Now in the Palm of Your Hand  

Business owners will now be able to create new business, marketing and emergency plans using a suite of free iPad apps developed by the Australian Government.

The Minister Assisting for Industry and Innovation, Senator Kate Lundy, launched the new and enhanced planning apps at the FutureGov Summit in Canberra recently.

"The planning process for companies can be daunting, but sound planning is required to start, run and grow a successful business," Senator Lundy said.

"By making planning templates available in a tablet app format, it will now be easier for businesses to create plans and update, share and store them online.

"Developed with the help of business experts, these smart apps are a great example of how the Gillard Government is using engaging and interactive technology to help business owners improve their productivity."

The two new iPad apps, MyBizPlan and MarketMyBiz, provide interactive templates to guide businesses through the process of developing business and marketing plans.

The existing app, MyBizShield, has been updated in response to customer feedback to improve its usability and enable cloud storage. The app was launched last year as part of a suite of resources to help businesses plan for emergencies.

"A look around any business office shows that owners and managers are embracing new technologies like tablets and smart phones," Senator Lundy said.

"As a Government we recognise how important it is to keep pace with rapid technological change and provide information and tools in a way that helps business owners increase productivity."

The Executive Director of the Council of Small Business of Australia (COSBOA) and passionate small business owner, Peter Strong, welcomed the new tools.

"This technology is the way forward and the business.gov.au planning apps are a great way of helping small business owners take advantage of new technology to improve the way they operate," Mr Strong said.

"Having your plan right there on your tablet device, means you can refer to your planning information really quickly anywhere. It's not sitting in a filing cabinet somewhere collecting dust.

"As technology develops, these kinds of apps will become commonplace for small businesses-and I'm pleased that business.gov.au is leading that change."

The apps are based on the popular business.gov.au business planning tools which earlier this year recorded over a million downloads. Android versions of the business planning tools apps are currently being developed.

For more information or to download the planning apps, visit: www.business.gov.au/businessapps

Please continue reading for Peter Strong's view on the new apps.
New Apps Helping To Put Small Businesses in Control  

The Council of Small Business of Australia (COSBOA) is an organisation representing the interests of small business in Australia. Peter Strong, passionate small business owner and COSBOA’s Executive Director, shares his thoughts on business.gov.au’s new and enhanced planning apps and how they will help small business in Australia.

"It’s a changing world, where small business people are moving away from the old ways of doing things to needing instant access to information and communication tools.

While this new environment provides fresh challenges for small business people innovative tools like the new suite of business planning apps from business.gov.au will help business people to be more in control of this change.

The apps give business owners the ability to develop a plan and take it with them anywhere. They are easy to use and right there at the drop of a hat, or perhaps I should say finger.

Most small business people know what we’re doing and have a plan in our heads but it’s important to have it written down. After all, if it’s only in your head, it’s hard to share with bank managers, investors, accountants or your fellow workers. These apps make it easier to get your business, marketing and emergency plans out of your head and onto paper, so to speak.

And having your plan right there on your tablet device, means you can refer to your planning information really quickly anywhere. It’s not sitting in a filing cabinet somewhere collecting dust.

The apps help you remember tasks that you may have forgotten, or details that have slipped to the back of your mind. We’re ‘just-in-time’ people—and that’s not a weakness, it’s a reality of small business. That’s the beauty of these new apps—they help make it easier for small business people to get access to important information when they need it most. If you’re away from your place of work and there’s an emergency, the MyBizShield app allows you to access your emergency management plan quickly.

One of the great things about small business people is that we have a diversity that makes up our culture. However, as we’re all run in different ways, it’s important to create a business plan that is tailored to our business. For example, I own a bookshop and if anyone else was running it they might do things completely differently. As such, they would need a very different business plan. The strength of these intuitive apps is that they’re adaptable to the needs of each business.

We’re going through quite a fascinating change in communications and technology and, as always, small business people will fiddle with it and make it work for us. This technology is the way forward, and the business.gov.au planning apps are a great way of helping small business owners take advantage of new technology to improve the way they operate.

The apps are a great starting point and it’s now up to small business people to go and look at them. After all, they have to be a part of the process to influence the change. Importantly, these apps can be adapted by business associations to suit their particular needs. This provides opportunities for these plans to be tailored to the needs of specific industry sectors.

There are now practical tools that people can use and adapt to their needs. There are a lot of possibilities with this technology and we’re just at the beginning. As technology develops, these kinds of apps will become commonplace for small businesses—and business.gov.au is leading that change."

Get Your BAS Right: Five Tips for Small Businesses  

If you are a small business that still prepares and lodges a paper quarterly BAS, this information probably will be of interest to you.

Often, running a small business doesn't leave much time to complete all the account keeping so it helps to get it right the first time. Here are five tips that will help you lodge your paper BAS by 28 February so you can get back to running your business.

The ATO is here to help

The ATO is here to help you get your BAS right the first time, every time.

Join other business owners around Australia that have found the answer to their questions on the ATO website. Here, you can access calculators, tools, articles and guides that provide information you can trust.

While there why not check out the benefits of lodging your BAS online. You may qualify for an extra two weeks to lodge and pay. More information is available at www.ato.gov.au/onlineservices

Alternatively, visit the ATO's YouTube Channel to watch short videos on topics such as record keeping and lodging your BAS on time. Simply go to www.youtube.com/AusTaxOffice

Use whole dollars

Doing sums where there are cents involved can often be tricky. When completing your BAS, only list whole dollars and remember to never round up.

Likewise, if a box applies to you but you have nothing to report, just insert a zero.

Make sure all invoices are tax invoices

It's important to ensure that all invoices are tax invoices. You must have a valid tax invoice to claim GST credits for all purchases over $82.50.

And although it sounds obvious, make sure you don't claim the same invoice twice.

Watch what you claim

Make sure you only claim GST credits from suppliers who are registered for GST.

You should keep records of all of your sales and purchases, however it is important to remember that you cannot claim credits for purchases that don't include GST (bank fees, water bills, etc), or were for personal use such as food and entertainment.

Sign on the dotted line

To ensure the ATO processes your paper BAS quickly, remember to always sign, date and include a contact number before lodging.

More Information

More information on how to lodge your business activity statement is available from the ATO website www.ato.gov.au/activitystatements or by calling 13 28 66.

© Australian Taxation Office for the Commonwealth of Australia
Business Corner  

In each edition of B-News we will provide you with any new organisations and or tools that we have come across that may benefit participating businesses improve their the way to engage Seniors Card holders with their business and ultimately provide a better Return on Investment (ROI).

Here is a list of providers that you may or may not be aware of:

NSW Small Business - NSW Government

Advisory Councils - NSW Trade & Investment: Business in NSW

NSW Business Chamber | Maximising your business potential

Small Business Grants


Small business

Nsw Start Up Small Business Grants

Business Enterprise Centres

Suburb listing

Albury : Murray/Hume BEC
Armidale : New England North West BEC
Botany Bay : Botany Bay BEC
Broken Hill : Broken Hill BEC
Campbelltown : Macarthur BEC
Central Coast : Central Coast BEC
Chatswood : Northside BEC
Coffs Harbour : Mid North Coast BEC
Forbes : Parkes Forbes BEC
Gateshead : Lake Macquarie Business Centre
Katoomba : Blue Mountains BEC
Kurri Kurri : Hunter Region BEC
Lismore : Northern Rivers BEC
Liverpool : Liverpool BEC
Newcastle : Hunter BEC
Nowra : llawarra ITeC Trading as Shoalhaven & District Business Enterprise Centre
Orange : Central NSW Business Enterprise Centre
Parkes : Parkes Forbes BEC
Parramatta : BEC Great Western (BASI)
Penrith : Penrith Valley BEC
Queanbeyan : Capital Region BEC
Richmond : Hawkesbury BEC
South Coast Region BEC : Illawarra ITeC Trading as South Coast Region BEC
Southern Highlands Region : Illawarra ITeC Trading as Southern Highlands Business Enterprise Centre
Sutherland : BEC Southern Sydney
Sydney :Clearly Business BEC
Wagga Wagga : Riverina BEC
Wollongong : Illawarra ITeC Trading as Illawarra Business Enterprise Centre

State Training Services for Business

NSW Department of Education and Communities

Your One-Stop Shop for all your apprenticeship, traineeship and vocational training needs.

Green Skills and Energy Efficiency Training

Do you want to be part of the NSW training response for a greener and more efficient economy?
State Training Services provides funding for:
• green skills and energy efficiency training courses
• professional development for teachers, assessors and RTOs
• in some cases, the development of training resources or training support activities.

Training options for your business

Economic downturn


TAFE NSW - Access to funding

Australian Apprentices

Marketing to Seniors Card Members  

Spotlight on the "eXtra" e-Newsletter
The Seniors Card program publishes the EXTRA e-Newsletter which is broadcast to more than 160, 000 Seniors Card holders who have opted in to receive it on a monthly basis. There is an average 2,000 increase in the number of people opting in to receive this broadcast each month.

The monthly electronic newsletter EXTRA is a great way for seniors to obtain valuable information about a range of subjects like what policies exist or are going to be introduced by government that will have an impact on their lives and the instruments by which they will be implemented.

EXTRA also contains information on Pets, Gardening, Monthly Book Corner and links through to Competitions, Special Offers, Discounts and Events.

EXTRA assists seniors to stay up to date with the news and topics of interest that relate specifically to their demographic.

EXTRA is also a great way for Participating Businesses to engage with a potential 160,000 Seniors Card holders. Through this engagement business can promote the features and benefits of their products and services, any special offers and or competitions.

An advertorial consists of a jpeg image 140 (High) x 220 (Wide) as well as 350 to 400 words of copy. Hyperlinks (web addresses) can be included.
Seniors Card can also provide statistics on the performance of the advertorial.

Please find some recent statistics detailing market benchmark versus Seniors Card website:

  Benchmark* Seniors Card
Open rate 23% 39%
Click through rate 5% 18%

As you can see from this comparison, EXTRA out performs the industry average* by a mile!

Book you advertorial spot today! Get in touch on 02 9377 6481 or send an email to business@seniorscard.nsw.gov.au .

For more information see http://www.seniorscard.nsw.gov.au/associates/promotion/enews.asp

* http://mailchimp.com/resources/research/email-marketing-benchmarks-by-industry/


** Average Jan-Oct 2012
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In this issue
NSW Seniors Directory 2013

Business Spotlight

Smart Online Business Tips

Planning for Business Success Now in the Palm of Your Hand

New Apps Helping To Put Small Businesses in Control

Get Your BAS Right: Five Tips for Small Businesses

Business Corner

Marketing to Seniors Card Members

Seniors Card website | About us | Contact us | Archive Feedback | Unsubscribe | Privacy | Legal disclaimer
NSW Government This email was sent by info@service.nsw.gov.au
Department of Family and Community Services
Level 10, 234 Sussex Street, Sydney, Australia, 2000
An important notice from NSW Seniors Card

How did you receive this special offer? On your membership form you indicated that you would like to receive information about special products and offers that may be of interest to you. Please note that access to your personal details on the Seniors Card database is strictly controlled to ensure your privacy is protected. Special offer mailings are provided to you by Seniors Card and your details are not provided to the company concerned. The frequency of mailings to Seniors Card members on offers such as above is strictly limited. If you do not want to receive this kind of offer in the future, please call Seniors Card on 1300 364 758. Seniors Card receives payment for arranging special offer mailings. This money is used to support the operation of the program. The NSW Government does not endorse or recommend any offer, or the products or services offered by businesses participating in the NSW Seniors Card program. The NSW Government is not a party to any offer made by businesses participating in the NSW Seniors Card program. For further information please visit the Seniors Card website.

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