How to Use Social Media Influencers to Promote Your Business

How to Use Social Media Influencers to Promote Your Business

Genevieve from MIC Greensborough client business Bake Mixes shares how she promotes her product range using social media influencers. 

Watch her video to learn how to boost your following on Instagram and Facebook. With almost 21k Instagram followers and 29k on Facebook, Gen has secured a strong audience using this strategy.

Green Roofs to Fight Urban Impacts of Climate Change

Green Roofs to Fight Urban Impacts of Climate Change

Michael Naylor, Managing Director of C. Fulton based at the Melbourne Innovation Centre in Alphington, is passionate about the environment. Determined to address this issue of urban heat radiation, Naylor has brought rooflite® to Australia—lightweight soil products engineered for a range of green roof applications.

Green roofs are layers of living vegetation installed on urban rooftops.

“Green roofs have a number of advantages,” Naylor explains. “They provide more capacity for agriculture in the form of urban vegetable gardens. They improve air quality by absorbing pollutants, reduce the risk of flooding, and regulate temperatures.”

Farmwall Cultivate Launch @ 200 George Street, Sydney

Farmwall Cultivate Launch @ 200 George Street, Sydney

It was excellent to see MIC client Farmwall launch their first corporate urban farm in partnership with Mirvac. Farmwall and Mirvac have co-created Cultivate—a pop up urban farm exclusive to the Mirvac community. The project will be held at one of Australia’s most sustainable buildings—200 George Street.

O-tix | Transforming the Events Industry

O-tix | Transforming the Events Industry

Online ticket sales is big business.

Australian online ticket platforms generated $289M in commission revenue in 2017 (IBISWorld). The majority of this revenue was reinvested into new functionality of online platforms to better serve eventgoers. Improving analytics capability and analysis of customer behavior is critical to successfully marketing and selling event tickets.

Melbourne-based startup O-tix recognised this 4 years ago, and has since developed event ticketing, registration, and lead-generation technology designed for consumer exhibitions, trade shows and conferences.

Global Health Strengthening

Global Health Strengthening

You’re on a babymoon holiday in Vanuatu—and you go into labour early. Where will you go to have the baby? Do you know which healthcare facilities are equipped and staffed for child birth? Until recently, such information wasn’t readily available—not for locals, healthcare professionals, or the countries themselves. Now, the free app and website Tupaia provides comprehensive supply chain information on healthcare facilities in the Asia Pacific.

Beyond Essential Systems provides healthcare consulting in developing countries, with a focus on procurement, distribution, and pharmaceutical consulting. In 2017, co-founder Michael Nunan managed the development of Tupaia—health resource and supply chain mapping for the Asia-Pacific region.

Innovating the Modular Containerised Data Centre

Innovating the Modular Containerised Data Centre

The SI Systems Modular Containerised Data Centre provides portable, flexible, and reliable solutions for your IT expansion needs.

Arran Greenhalgh runs SI Systems at MIC Greensborough, a tech company specialising in IT infrastructure, data protection, software development, and custom-built tech solutions.

The Art of Digital Storytelling

The Art of Digital Storytelling

Matt de Moiser operates Pollen Interactive at MIC Northcote. While in the business incubator, Pollen has evolved into a full service digital agency.

“Our focus is sharing client stories,” Matt says, “stories that can spark emotions and hopefully inspire change.”

Machines Plus Deliver Tailor-Made Printing Solutions

Machines Plus Deliver Tailor-Made Printing Solutions

Machines Plus is a printing company providing Australian garment makers with high quality DTG (direct to garment) printers. Focusing on customer delivery, Machines Plus delivers solutions to businesses with a wide range of needs, providing water based, dye sublimation, solvent and UV printing options.

Gus Altmann, Founder and Product Specialist of Machines Plus, established the company after working in the printing industry for 15 years. A graphic designer by trade, he attended Mackenzie University in Brazil before moving to Australia and working with brands such as Canon, Roland DG, Mutoh and DTG.

Startup with Sustainable Life Cykel

Startup with Sustainable Life Cykel

Melburnians love café culture, but did you know that coffee grounds end up in anaerobic landfill, which prevents decomposition, ultimately turning our caffeine consumption into methane emissions? MIC’s newest startup, Life Cykel, is reusing the waste of our urban tastes to create sustainable, high-protein food – mushrooms!

Wild Melbourne Preserving Nature's Future

Wild Melbourne Preserving Nature's Future

Not-for-profit Wild Melbourne is dedicated to enhancing the Victorian public's understanding of native Australian wildlife, science and environmental matters. Focusing on inspiring and enabling people to seek their own intimate connections with nature, Wild Melbourne’s ultimate objective is to protect the world.

Instigating this level of cultural shift within communities is not an easy task, yet the world is facing a growing environmental crisis that can’t be ignored. Simultaneously, we are facing a societal crisis of disengagement and depression, fatigue and frustration that also must be addressed.

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“We are now learning about nature’s role in our mental and physical wellbeing,” says co-founder Leonardo Guida, Wild Melbourne’s Community Operations Manager. “It’s more important than ever that we grow and maintain strong connections with natural environments.”

Wild Melbourne understands that nature needs us as strongly we need it. And the team is intent on spreading the word.

“There is no ‘one size fits all’ approach to caring about the environment or interacting with the great outdoors”, says Leonardo. The team find that the best way to incite a response is to promote personal connections with nature that are relevant and unique to individuals. 

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Through articles, community events and school talks, Wild Melbourne aims to educate communities on the changing environment. This new information will act as a catalyst for change in the way people relate to the environment and will therefore make an impact on the wider world.

“It’s a fantastic thing to witness people discover something about the natural world they never really understood before,” says Managing Director Chris McCormack.

Wild Melbourne boasts an incredibly diverse and passionate team, primarily individuals trained in the biological sciences, whose skills are utilised through film, sound and storytelling to produce engaging and informative content.

While the majority of the team are volunteers, Wild Melbourne has made a move toward establishing their organisation by employing one full-time staff member and setting up residence in Melbourne Innovation Centre Greensborough. “We needed a place to grow and find our legs,” said Leonardo, “Melbourne Innovation Centre offered a welcoming environment with great support services that could aid us in doing this”.

Now well-established in the space, the team have been presented with many opportunities for growth. They recently received a grant from the Norman Wettenhall Foundation to produce a video series that highlights the hard work of Victorian community conservation groups. Titled Community Conservationists¸ this project aims to bring some much-deserved attention to five dedicated groups helping to protect and conserve Victoria’s natural heritage.

Wild Melbourne believes it is more important than ever that we grow and maintain strong connections with natural environments. Every individual is a unique opportunity to protect the world. A cultural shift may be a slow process, but it is also a vital step in bridging the gap between our community and our ecosystems.

As Leonardo says, “We hope to contribute to a cultural shift whereby people within our community consider themselves more and more a part of a bigger picture, and in turn, are willing to protect that picture.”

Education delivering lasting change

Education delivering lasting change

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Education Campaigns Australia (ECA) is an educational consultancy that develops school curriculum resources and programs for clients wanting to engage with youth and secondary schools. It offers online and blended learning design and multimedia content development, project management, and specialist educational writing, editing and publishing.

David Williams from ECA moved into MIC Greensborough in June –  right on the cusp of launching a new phase of the business. This will combine its capability and experience in public relations and education to help clients achieve their awareness, learning, and behaviour change goals.

“ECA has developed a trusted network of companies and talented individuals including award-winning writers and editors,” David explains. “We are always on the lookout for creative freelancers and engage them often.”

David is currently teaching at Melbourne Polytechnic, and has been a secondary teacher for 12 years. He has also worked in corporate elearning and was general manager of a national training company and CEO of a Registered Training Organisation.

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A current ECA project is Disaster Resilience Education, which is being rolled out across Victoria in both private and public schools. This explains disaster resilience to students, particularly those in areas at high risk of natural hazards such as fire and flood. ECA is also redeveloping Country Fire Authority’s School Education Partnerships Program and Junior Brigades Program.

Melbourne Innovation Centre appealed to ECA with its networking opportunities and productive working space. “I like having the right space to meet clients and work alongside freelancers and collaborators on creative projects,” says David. The plan for growth in the next 2-3 years is to double revenue each year.


As for David’s passion for the industry: “I love helping clients to create highly engaging and effective learning experiences.”

The Flavour of Alphington

The Flavour of Alphington

Every bottle of La Sirène's farmhouse ale is an embodiment of its locale. This microbrewery specialises in the enigmatic flavour profiles of yeast unique to the Darebin Parklands, situated behind the brewery at Melbourne Innovation Centre.

La Sirène is an urban farmhouse brewery with a strong sustainability focus. It produces beer like that made in farmhouses in the early 14th century—yet it is six kilometers from Melbourne’s CBD. This anachronism sees the contemporary warehouse emanating the mystery and charm of a beer sleeping room, custom-built cool ship fermentation vessel, and 130 stunning traditional French oak barrels.

La Sirène founder, Costa Nikias, explains, “We wanted to make beer with a sense of place. Over the years, it has become so industrialised and process-driven. We want to have a more authentic approach and pay homage to where our beer is made.”

 La Sirène's business owners: Costa and Eva Nikias

La Sirène's business owners: Costa and Eva Nikias

The Darebin Parklands and creek contains a huge amount of flora which La Sirène coerces into their brewery. “We typically do wild brewing on a windy day with the roller doors open. It’s all about expressing natural yeast.”

In doing so, La Sirène has captured the flavour of Alphington. It uses the yeast to ferment the beer and then takes those yeast strains to a lab. La Sirene now has a full culture in a lab, so it can recall all the natural yeasts that originate from that location. “We’re a brand of Alphington,” says Eva Nikias, Costa’s partner in business and life. “I don’t think you’ll find any stronger than us.”

The Darebin Parklands are pivotal to this brewing method. La Sirène is a corporate member, supporting the land that enables it to incorporate wild fermentation into the brewing process. One beer was forklifted down to the creek in the tank and left there for three days so it could inoculate naturally. “Other beers have a bit of house yeast and a bit of parkland yeast,” Costa says. “But that one is a true representation of the parkland in beer form.”

Positioned in a large warehouse at Melbourne Innovation Centre, the brewery has received mentoring and support from the business incubator to assist with its business growth. Initially brewing Saisons and farmhouse ales, La Sirène has transcended that process since moving in, now focusing on making beer in barrels. “Wild fermented,” Costa explains, “Spontaneously fermented in the cool ship. You can’t get any higher than that in terms of brewing.”

  Cool ship wild fermentation resulting from a very cold Melbourne night. Now ready to be put in oak barrels for three years

Cool ship wild fermentation resulting from a very cold Melbourne night. Now ready to be put in oak barrels for three years

A cool ship is a large open vessel that catches the yeast and bacteria in the atmosphere as it cools. It demands very cold conditions and can only be used within a period of around two weeks each year. La Sirène is one of very few breweries globally to use this old school method that originates from Belgium. Costa calls it, “the Champagne of beer making.”

La Sirène is a certified green business from the Darebin City Council. Making beer with a sense of place feeds into the brewery’s emphasis on sustainability. The spirit of farmhouse beer-making involves using local ingredients as much as possible—and La Sirène uses Melbourne Water, hops grown in Myrtleford, and yeast from Alphington. All of La Sirène's beers use 100% grain (larger breweries tend to use around 30%), which then goes to a piggery in Macedon to be used as feed. It doesn’t use chemicals to clean the floors and recycles a lot of its cooling water.

The business hires locally and organises all deliveries in-house, which further minimises its carbon footprint. “It’s our responsibility to minimise our footprint,” Costa says. “For us it’s about building up a local market. It would be ideal to sell all of our beer in metro Melbourne.”

“La Sirène is a gem in the middle of Alphington,” says Eva. “People are very proud of us.”