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Gingerpickle - an Interview with a recent Grad doing their own 'thang'!
by Startacus Admin
In the first week of launching Startacus, we interviewed Jade Murray, Founder of online boutique Gingerpickle. It was earlier this week (now June 2014) that we revisted the Gingerpickle site and were glad to see that all seemed to be going from strength to strength for Jade. So if you are looking for a little inspiration, check out the interview with Jade, who went from unemployed art Grad to entrepreneur... The Interview...
Ginger Pickle - what does the name mean? The name has no real meaning behind it, I was trying to think of an obscure name for my boutique, something that people would remember and when I happened to put those two words together something magical happened and I knew straight away that I was going to call my businessGinger Pickle!
You only Graduated in 2011, what motivated you to do your own ‘thang’? After I graduated from Gray's School of Art, I was really unsure about what to do as a career. My passion for fine art dwindled because it all became a bit too serious for my liking, and suddenly painting for pleasure wasn't part of the game. I came out of Gray's wanting to do something fun and inspiring, and I have always wanted my own shop. I just thought let's do it and see what happens. Once I decided that Ginger Pickle was going to happen that was it, it was going to happen! Being a creative individual at heart I still was very eager to learn some new skills and I now make jewellery for the website too.
And why online? Online was the obvious option for me because I was in no financial position to have a business premises. I wanted to reach a global audience too and having an online shop meant that that could happen. After doing market research it was apparent that online shopping is the way forward. There is no opening or closing times, people can shop at their own leisure at their own pace and don't have to worry about the pressure of sales people. You can even shop in your pj's! Online shopping is much greener too. Ecommerce uses less energy and it's carbon footprint is a third smaller than brick-and-mortar retail (source: http://blogs.wsj.com/digits/2009/03/03/the-green-side-of-online-shopping/) It was also very beneficial for me too, it means that I can work on Ginger Pickle all day and don't have to be there to open up and close up etc and I can save money by not having to have employees!
Is there a big self starter scene, where you live & how much support did you get from within the ‘entrepreneurial’ community? There is a great self starter scene in Aberdeen, I have met loads of lovely people who have offered me invaluable advice and support. I attended Business Gateway workshops and received the start-up fund of £250 from PSYBT. There are tons of business networking events, forums and online communities, it's all so much I can hardly keep up!
What one piece of advice would you give to anyone with a good idea, but no idea what to do next?
Do as much research as possible! Research your idea, the market, your competitors and really think about where you would like to fit in in the whole grand scheme of things. Have a big think about what you want your company to represent, your values and what will set you apart from your competitors. As an online boutique I have made the choice to sell only handmade items made by British designers. Find your niche and milk it!
Contact people who have done it before and ask them for advice, they might not reply but it's worth a shot. Read online articles and get as clued up as possible. Having all of this background knowledge will spur you on and motivate you even more.
If you're getting a website made, make sure you research the website design company beforehand to make sure they are credible. I have been stung by trusting the wrong guy and had to get another company (a much more reputable one) to finish the job, which has cost me time and money. Make sure you set a deadline for when you want the website to be made too. But the most important advice I can give is just go for it, you just have to take the plunge and put as much effort into it as possible!
How is the business right now, and what plans do you have to develop the platform further? I have so many plans for Ginger Pickle and i'm so motivated to make these happen. I am about to hand in my notice at work and focus fully on Ginger Pickle. It is a scary thought but having the time to develop Ginger Pickle is crucial. I simply have no time to focus on developing my business, right now I only have time to focus on the daily operational side of things which won't help Ginger Pickle in the long run.
What do you like best and worst about being your boss?! I love the fact that it's something that I love doing! I could be the boss of a large multinational and I would't feel the same way. I love it because it's my own creation and I have a direct input into every aspect of it. There is nothing I dislike about being my own boss!