Thanks to Mobile-ising Women in Business conference returning to Adelaide this June.
I had to be at the forefront of change when I started my business She Shopped in 2012. I was a young mum of three boys under the age of five, including our eldest Ed, who was born with serious health issues.
I wanted to work and could foresee that I would indeed need to when my husband’s AFL career came to an end, but maintaining a “normal” job – the kind that requires employees to be at the same desk from 9 to 5 each day – was impossible for me.
I needed employment that was flexible enough to accommodate my son’s hospital stays and clinics and my husband’s schedule that included travel every other week.
It quickly became clear flexible working options were very scarce and so I had to pioneer a career of my own by creating a job that allowed me to work remotely and so I built She Shopped from the ground up – with a $30,000 redraw from our mortgage.
My ability to harness technology, combined with an enormous amount of hard work and a healthy dose of resiliency allowed me to build a commercially successful business quickly. She Shopped was profitable in its first year, a six-figure business by its second year and is forecasted to be a million-dollar business by its seventh year.
So what are my top five tips for building a digital business?
- Harness the power of social media
It’s an effective and economical way of marketing your business and provides a platform to have a two-way conversation with your audience – this is great for gaining feedback (the good and the bad!) but don’t get frustrated when Facebook changes its algorithm – your business needs to be bigger than Facebook and not too reliant on any one social media channel – lets not forget what happened to Myspace.
- Maintain low overheads
As my business grew, it was tempting to spend, spend, and spend – perhaps on a flashy office or a fancy leased car, but because I opted not to and in doing so have maintained low overheads I have been able to manage lean times in my business with relative ease and invest in the areas that foster growth.
The digital space is fast paced and you must be prepared to keep pace…or better still, set it! She Shopped started as a publishing platform but has evolved to become a modern day digital agency with a focus on creating video content for leading brands. If I had maintained the publishing model I don’t think I would have a business today due to the influx of competition. My ability to innovate has given me a point of difference.
- Put good people around you
Instead of investing in a fancy car, I have invested in people and this has paid dividends. I am able to provide weekly work to a team of eight freelancers and they are an integral part of my business. I also identified very early areas that are not my forte and brought people in to fill these roles. For example, numbers are not my strength so I invested in a brilliant accountant and book keeper – they have greatly contributed to the success of my business.
- Never stop learning and never say never!
It doesn’t matter what industry you are in, you need to stay abreast of digital trends and incorporate innovation into your enterprise – whether you are real estate agent, artist or jeweller! I don’t think the saying “innovate or die” has ever been more relevant – now is the time to harness the power of technology and be empowered by its potential to exponentially grow your business.
The Mobile-ising Women in Business conference returns to Adelaide for the second time on Tuesday 27 June. An initiative of the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Business SA through Biz Better Together, the conference will provide women in business access to global influencers and thinkers and people at the forefront of change.
The experts including speakers Tara Moss and Catherine Ball will help you to understand how the rapid growth of technology is disrupting businesses, workplaces and individuals and empower you with strategies to harness the opportunities presented by new technologies.
Ready to take your business to the frontline of technology? Invest in a ticket to Mobile-ising Women in Business conference – early bird tickets are on sale until 2 June. Click HERE for more information and to book