An awards program that recognises the true challenges of running your own business and getting your brand ‘out there’ in the digital word.

The truth is, most awards out there are focused on big brands and fancy agencies. Others have a million finalists or a ‘pay to play’ vibe.

But this awards program is different. It’s about genuinely recognising the small businesses and ecommerce stores doing the hard work and skillfully using digital marketing to create a successful business on their own terms.

The Digital Marketing Collective Awards is about encouraging YOU to celebrate your wins and gain the industry recognition you deserve.

Award categories:

We’re starting with just two categories in our first year:

Service-based Business of the Year

This category is open to any business focused on providing a service to clients.
This includes all kinds of service businesses from accountants and lawyers to designers and coaches.

Judges will be looking for business owners who can demonstrate a strategic approach to developing and marketing their skills, securing new clients, managing client relationships, and building a sustainable and profitable business.

Ecommerce Business of the Year

This category is open to any ecommerce store that sells products to customers, this includes both physical and digital goods.
We welcome entries from all industries.
Judges will be looking for ecommerce store owners who can demonstrate a strategic approach to developing their online store experience, winning new customers, managing customer relationships, and building a sustainable and profitable business.

How it works:

All businesses are welcome to join, although we’re based in Australia, we welcome anyone in the world to take part.

Simply follow these steps:

Choose the category you’d like to enter in the next section.

Answer the questions and submit your answers by midnight on Friday 25 August 2023. (Entries closed).

Judges will review all entries (28th to 1st September 2023).

Finalists announced (10 in each category) 1st September 2023.

Winners announced 7th October at DMC Conference

This is your chance to earn recognition for all your hard work and share your success loudly and proudly.

Please note:

  • Entry is FREE for members of the Digital Marketing Collective
  • Non-members will be charged an entry fee of $47 to cover admin. Displayed Price is GST inclusive where applicable.
  • Finalists are encouraged to have an in-person ticket for the DMC Conference 2023.

The prize

As well as being recognised as a digital marketing leader, winners will also receive:

  • One year of free membership to the Digital Marketing Collective
  • Digital Marketing Collective trophy
  • Boundless praise, attention and celebration across our social media channels and website.

We’ll also be providing graphics and images for finalists and winners, so that they can share their win on their own social media channels, website, email footer, dating profile, business cards, Christmas cards. Anywhere you like really.

The judges

Who better than to judge our inaugural Digital Marketing Collective Awards than some of the experts from our Digital Marketing Collective Community?

These are business owners who know their stuff, coming from a wide range of backgrounds and industries, and bringing their own digital marketing know-how to the judging process.

Please note: Kate won’t be part of the judging process (as she doesn’t want to be accused of favouritism).

Head judge:
Erin Huckle
Erin Huckle
Ecommerce judges:
Nell Casey
Nell Casey
Anu Sawhney
Anu Sawhney
Deborah Quinn
Deborah Quinn
Kerri Bennett
Service business judges:
Shannon Morrison
Ben Amos
Jo Saunders
Kara Lambert

Key dates:

2023 DMC awards dates

Entries open: Monday 8th August 2023
Entries close: Friday 25 August 2023 at midnight (AEST)
Finalists announced: Friday 1 September 2023
Winners announced: Saturday 7 October 2022 at DMC Conference in Sydney (attend in-person or online)

Nominate a business owner

Do you know anyone who deserves to win an award, but might be too scared to enter.

Give them a firm pat/push on the bottom and nominate them.

Frequently asked questions:

Is being nominated the same as entering?

No. Being nominated just means someone thinks you’re awesome, it’s up to you to decide if you want to enter.

Do I have to be a Digital Marketing Collective member to join?

No. All businesses are welcome.

Do I have to be nominated to enter?

No. It’s just a fun way to spread the word.

Can I nominate myself?

Yes of course 🙂 but you don’t need to have been nominated to enter.

Do I have to be Australian to join?

No. All businesses are welcome

I’ve never entered myself in an award before. How do I know if it’s worth my time entering the Digital Marketing Collective Awards?

If you’ve never entered a business award before, the Digital Marketing Collective Awards are a great place to start. We’ve kept the process super simple, and we’re here to support you along the way. It’s a great opportunity to reflect on your business success. The content you create for your entry can also be repurposed – use it on your website, as a blog, or even share snippets of it on social media. It also means you’ll have some answers ready to go when you decide to enter any other award programs out there.

How long will it take to complete my entry?

Each category has five or six questions to answer, of around 200 words each – around 1,000 words in total.
We’d estimate it will take three – six hours to complete your entry, including some time to gather evidence such as client testimonials.

Can I enter more than one award category?


What are the judges looking for?

The judges will be looking for entrants who are taking their business seriously – no side-hustles or hobbyists, but people who have made a real commitment to building their business, upskilling, marketing and developing themselves.

These awards aren’t just about digital marketing but rather about recognising the reality of running a successful business and the hard work that goes into it behind the scenes.

How many finalists will there be?

There will be 10 finalists in each category.

I've worked with one of the judges, should I declare this

Yes, if you have a close personal connection (or an issue) with a judge let us know and we can make sure they’re not involved in the judging process.

Will there be any help given?

If you’re looking for some inspiration on how to write an award entry, you can check out Erin Huckle’s masterclass on award writing in the Digital Marketing Collective membership.

What happens if I become a finalist?

Finalists will be notified via email and announced in the Digital Marketing Collective member group on Facebook and in the Digital Marketing Collective member newsletter . All finalists will be provided with Digital Marketing Collective logos and badges so they can promote their success within their own networks.

What happens if I don’t become a finalist?

If you aren’t a finalist this year, you’ll still have invested some worthy time in your business, and we’d encourage you to consider entering again in 2024 . Judges may provide specific feedback at their discretion.

What happens if I win?

Winners will be announced at Digital Marketing Collective Conference 2023 on Saturday 7 October, so we encourage entrants to attend the conference in-person.
Winners will be publicised via the Digital Marketing Collective social media channels and newsletter and via an official press release.

Will you be running the awards next year?

We plan on making the Digital Marketing Collective an annual event and hope to return in 2024.

Judges bios

Erin Huckle - Head judge

Erin Huckle from Chuckle Communications is in the business of raising the profiles of her clients through proactive PR, amazing award entries and compelling written content. She works with innovative, ethical and creative small businesses and leaders, to find their voice and tell their stories. Her focus is on helping clients connect with their ideal customers, by turning up where they hang out. With 20 years in the industry, Erin still gets a huge buzz out of helping her clients get featured in the media, and loves reminiscing about sending media releases out via snail mail ‘back in the day’.

Nell Casey - Ecommerce judge

Nell Casey is a copywriter and content strategist who works with new and established ecommerce brands to create content that‘s engaging, inspiring and worth coming back for. Since founding digital marketing agency Fete Creative, Nell has worked with hundreds of ecommerce businesses to help them craft strategic brand identities that generate eyeballs, clicks and sales.

Deborah Quinn - Ecommerce judge

Deborah Quinn serves as one of the Directors of two successful e-commerce ventures: and Her journey in the online retail industry began in 2008 when she founded the first website. Over the past 15 years, Deborah has witnessed the remarkable evolution of e-commerce and has adapted her businesses accordingly. With her business partner, Kym, she has experienced many challenges and triumphs. Despite the ups and downs, Deborah remains extremely grateful for the position she holds today as she gets to indulge her passion for creating, decorating, and celebrating.

Anu Sawney - Ecommerce judge

Anu is a quirky, kind human with an infectious zest for life. With a design degree in her bag, she set out to change how people feel, one design at a time.

After spending far too many years working for big brands (Kenneth Cole, Banana Republic, Giorgio Armani, Gap, The Gazal group & Leona Edmiston to name a few) she threw it all away for creating with kindness and selling without selling her soul. She brings her brightness and sparkle to life and believes, wholeheartedly, that happy people create happy things.

Through founding Bidiliia, her own ethical jewellery brand, she found her love for experiential copywriting. She’s a storyteller with an inspiring story and is going places with her newfound love.
Mum to two small humans, Anu lives in Sydney and is originally from India. Oh, and she’s 3.2cms taller than her natural height, thanks to two new hips and a new knee.
She believes in thinking outside the box and being persistent. But above all she believes that you shouldn’t have to sell your soul to run a business.

Kerri Bennet - Ecommerce judge

Kerri Bennett is the friendly face behind Shopify and SEO agency Yellow Door Digital. Kerri was fortunately to spend ten years at a major communications agency in Melbourne where in her role as Digital Producer she was able to dive into all things digital. Kerri spearheaded the company’s debut into social media, SEO, analytics, email marketing, online memberships, website development and gathering a degree in Internet Communications along the way. In 2018 Kerri swung open the doors to her own digital marketing agency.

With her straight-talking and completely transparent approach, Kerri cuts through the geek-speak to help her clients get clear on what they need to do to succeed online. With a focus on eCommerce websites – she helps growing product based businesses develop and execute solid SEO strategy that take your visitors from click-through to cart.

Shannon Morrison - Service business judge

Don’t be fooled by his cheeky and affable nature, Shan is a creative genius with mad social skills, who turns the ordinary into the extraordinary. Shan has been called ‘The Rainmaker’ by his clients as he helps them turn their businesses into profit-making behemoths. From operations to marketing to team wrangler, Shan is an expert Online Operations Manager that provides business owners and entrepreneurs with the security and support to bring their business dreams into reality.

Ben Amos - Service business judge

Ben is a passionate online video strategist, video producer, international speaker and consultant working with high-impact brands worldwide to connect them to their ideal audiences through effective online video marketing. As host of the Engage Video Marketing Podcast, and coach to hundreds of Video Strategists globally, Ben’s mission is to help other creatives, marketers, entrepreneurs and video producers better understand how to attract, engage and convert audiences online with video.

Jo Saunders - Service business judge

Jo Saunders is a sought after independent LinkedIn expert and trainer, known as the LinkedIn Demystifier. She is driven by an intense curiosity in how LinkedIn can be leveraged to establish connection, enhance credibility and earn influence through the power of Connectfluence. She is engaged to train, mentor and strategise with teams of entrepreneurial thinkers and talented experts who are focussed on solving client problems. Jo is the winner of Best Use of LinkedIn 2021, Social Media Educator of the Year Award Finalist 2019 and was named #2 LinkedIn Expert in Asia Pacific for 2018, and is the co-author of ‘Get Good or Get Off – A guide to getting it right on social media’.