Speaker, Author and Trainer

As a commentator for ABC TV, contributor to BRW, B & T, Mamamia, The Australian Financial Review and Sky News, Bernadette is an authority on marketing and can speak on a range of topics - from online business, to storytelling for leaders to boot-strapping strategies for startups.

  • Best-selling author of two business books about online business.
  • Podcaster with Southern Cross Radio subsidiary - US-giant Podcast One - "How to build an online business".
  • Presentation skills coach to Australia's top CEOs.
  • Winner of the Bendigo Bank 'Excellence in Business' Awards.
  • Judge for the Online Retailers Internet Awards (the 'Oscars of Online Business').
  • Founder of Australia's most popular copywriting course and trainer of over 8,000 business owners.


Bernadette Schwerdt is a keynote speaker, author and entrepreneur. She is the founder of the Australian School of Copywriting, the head copywriting tutor at Australian Writers Centre, and a former senior account director with global advertising agency Wunderman Cato Johnson Advertising where she created award-winning campaigns for clients such as Apple, American Express and BHP.

She has a business degree in Marketing from the University of South Australia, is the author of the best-selling book ‘Secrets of Online Entrepreneurs’ which was named in the Top 100 Business Books for both 2016 and 2017. She is the producer of a video series of the same name for The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald websites, and a popular TEDx speaker.

Her new book, ‘How to Build an Online Business’ synthesizes the hard-won insights of over 50 of Australia’s top online entrepreneurs and start-up superstars. She packages those nuggets of wisdom into practical tips and tools that any business can use to successfully launch and grow an online (or offline) business.

Marketing, online business, personal branding and corporate storytelling are the tools of her trade and have seen her become one of Australia’s most engaging and sought-after speakers. Her reviews are five-star and attendees consistently rate her as one of the best speakers at every conference she attends.

She is on the board of Writers Victoria, a mentor with the Layne Beachley ‘Aim for the Stars’ foundation, and a judge for the Anthill Cool Company Awards and the Online Retailers Industry Awards (ORIAs). She has been featured in BRW, Money magazine, HuffPost and on Sky News.

She took three years out of the corporate world to study acting at the Victorian College of the Arts, has since worked extensively as an actor in film and television and is a leading speaker coach and presentation skills trainer for senior executives, politicians and elite sports teams.

You could say she’s had what is now known as a ‘portfolio’ career. Her mother still doesn’t know exactly what she does.

Bernadette speaks on a range of topics including:

  • Online Business 
  • Small Business Sales and Marketing
  • Technology and Digital Disruption
  • Business Storytelling for Leaders
  • Presenting for Influence
  • Women in Business - Motivation and Inspiration
  • Entrepreneurship 

A snapshot of Bernadette’s credentials:

  • Founder of Australia’s largest copywriting training institution: The Australian School of Copywriting (copyschool.com)
  • Executive Producer and Presenter of Fairfax Digital’s online TV show "Secrets of Aussie Online Entrepreneurs”
  • Specialist marketing reporter for Channel Nine’s The Small Business Show
  • Lecturer at The University of Melbourne, RMIT, Swinburne University, Australian Direct Marketing Association (ADDMA), Victoria University
  • Regular guest on ABC Radio, podcaster with MMM Radio/Southern Cross Broadcaster's partner, US-giant, Podcast One
  • Contributor to BRW, B & T, Mamamia, Marie Claire, The Australian Financial Review, Sky News, Inside Small Business and more.
  • Senior Account Director with Wunderman Cato Johnson, a divison of one of the world’s largest advertising agencies, Young and Rubicam.
  • Online course creator for one of Australia's most popular copywriting courses 

Her qualifications include:

  • Winner – Bendigo Bank Business Excellence Award
  • Bachelor of Business (Majoring in Marketing)
  • Gold Medal Winner for Strategic Marketing from the University of Adelaide
  • Certified Meta-NLP Practitioner of Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP)
  • Accredited instructor of Myers Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), DiSC and PADI
  • Certificate IV in Workplace Training and Assessment
  • Recipient of the Queen’s Silver Jubilee Trust for Young Australians
  • Classically-trained actress (Victorian College of the Arts, 1995-1997)

Accomplished stage and TV performer:

Not only is she one of the country’s leading authorities on small business marketing and copywriting, she is also an accomplished actress appearing regularly on our screens in some of Australia’s leading movies and television shows like:

  • Jack Irish
  • Neighbours
  • Blue Heelers
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    The Games
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    Round The Twist

As such, her presentations are imbued with theatricality, humour and compelling stories.

Experienced Corporate Trainer:

  • AMP
  • ANZ
  • Booz Allen Hamilton
  • BT Financial Group
  • Canon
  • Coles Myer Group
  • Cadbury Schweppes
  • Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu
  • Department of Foreign Affairs & Trade
  • Department of Treasury & Finance
  • Ernst and Young
  • Ford Motor Company
  • GE
  • KPMG
  • Macquarie Bank
  • Merrill Lynch
  • Microsoft
  • ..and many others.

Free Bonus Chapters of Bernadette Schwerdt's Best-Selling Books
Secrets of Online Entrepreneurs
& How to Build an Online Business