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Interview with Bree Cardilini

Bree Cardilini talks about her work as Marketing & Business Development Manager with The Great Escape Charter Company and her decision to engage with OM4 as a digital marketing partner.


How do you describe your business?

We’re a small family owned and operated luxury cruise company. We specialise in small group, luxury adventure cruises along the West Coast coast, Kimberley Coast and out to the Rowley Shoals.

Can you describe the types of work OM4 does for you?

Everything. Initially we worked together on new website builds for both of our businesses. That included a complete overhaul of copy and the creation of authority pages. They took us through the whole process from UX, SEO and most importantly managing the site ourselves moving forward. Over the years we’ve worked on various other projects, like a competitive analysis of the market for both businesses. This work gave us direction. It’s been motivational and has helped us know where to assign our resources. This is important because we are a small business, so we’re always running thin. We’ve used OM4 a few times for training including Content SEO which has helped me to understand the need for good website content.

The way you work with OM4 changed over the years. Can you tell us about that change?

We’ve been through a lot with COVID. We’ve been light on staff and we’ve also had new staff.

There was a lot of work and not many hands, particularly those experienced with the marketing side of our business. It was great. OM4 came through with a proposal about a new way of working in terms of doing retainer type work. That was really well-timed for us. I guess it’s like having extended team members. I keep getting pulled back into the operations side of things. It’s hard to think creatively and to get those sorts of tasks done when you’re so snowed under with the daily demands of the business. Being able to just flick random things through to OM4 when they come up has been a huge benefit.

What makes you the happiest about working with OM4?

I love how positive and helpful the team is. I just feel like there’s never a stupid question or statement. I feel very comfortable in being open and honest about my own shortcomings and that’s why we are using OM4 for their expertise. I don’t need to have all the answers. That’s really helpful for me. I think when you already feel like you’re snowed under, you just need people to help prop you up and keep you moving forward and keep you on track. OM4 definitely does a good job of that.

What have you been able to achieve since you’ve been working in this new retainer partnership?

For me the biggest thing has been being able to keep up marketing momentum. We have clear priorities and we work through them. It’s such a nice feeling to know that you’re moving forward. My availability can be a little bit sporadic and that’s the general nature of this business. OM4 adjusts and keeps things progressing. We’ve been able to generate content for the website which has been on my wishlist for a while. OM4 has worked really closely with our CRM guys to make sure our website is talking to our new CRM. We’ve gone online with processes that were previously manual. We’re streamlining our processes, which has been really good.

Has OM4 lived up to your expectations in this new working model?

We’ve had quite a few years working together, so I expected that it would be good. We have a proven track record of working well together. I didn’t have any hesitations because OM4 understands our business and really tries to put themselves in our shoes.  I knew OM4 would work like that for us from the outset.

What’s the main reason you’d recommend OM4 as a digital partner to someone who was thinking of outsourcing some of their marketing?

Well, I do think that the OM4 team are really practical people. They focus on the best place to spend money, and particularly for small businesses, that’s important. We could do a million different things in the digital space, but would it be effective? Does it resonate with our business? Maybe not. So what works for one business doesn’t necessarily work for another.  I really think the OM4 team cuts through all the noise and says honest things like, “Don’t over-engineer, don’t over-report, just use your own metrics if they work for you.” When I hear something like that, I don’t feel like I’m dealing with sales people. It feels genuine.

What does the day to day work feel like for you?

The OM4 team are really fun people. I always enjoy the lighthearted nature of the work that I do with them. I really love the rapport that we’ve built up over time. We don’t take ourselves too seriously, at the same time, we do have a serious work focus. I have personally really appreciated the support of OM4 through really tough times. I don’t have a huge team over here, and we don’t have an inhouse marketing or digital team as such, so OM4 support has been invaluable.