You’ve probably noticed that I’ve been a little bit quiet on The Velvet Court, especially with its editorial posts, and that’s because I now have my own business! Little Black Dress Digital (LBD Digital) is a digital marketing company, offering social media, email, and website development services. Originally, I was going to post this article on LBD Digital’s website, but it felt more appropriate for this blog with its informal language and journal-like feel. So, here is why I started my business, LBD Digital.
Before I even started my business, I wasn’t always going to have a career in marketing. At 19 I had a career change and after completing my Certificate IV in Residential Building Draft, I went on to complete a Bachelor of Commerce, majoring in marketing and advertising. I was drawn to marketing as it’s both strategic and creative, which keeps me mentally stimulated.
Maybe owning a business was always on the cards though because you could say that I come from a business family. My dad works in the corporate world (and owns his own business). From a young age, he taught my sister and me about how to run a business. When I was little, my sister and I brought 2 cows from my grandparents (who were cattle farmers) and we learnt about expenses and profit. At one stage we had a small interest in the share market too. Combined with my success in economics in high school, it seemed that the corporate world was a good fit for me. It wasn’t until COVID though, that things fell into place.
So, while COVID and its lockdowns certainly had their negatives, in some ways it was a blessing in disguise for me. As part of my Bachelor of Commerce degree, students are encouraged to undertake internships. Before COVID, remote/online internships were not allowed, but now they were. After getting knocked back for a few internships, I approached a marketing and branding company that is based in WA but don’t have any offices. They said yes and without knowing it, this is what started the ball rolling on LBD Digital.
This internship gave me great insight it what it was like to work for yourself from home. I set my own hours and worked whenever I wanted to. It didn’t matter, as long as the work was completed on time. Now for a workaholic like myself, sometimes this does require self-discipline so that you’re not working all of the time, but the flexibility is great. As someone with a disability too, it meant that I wasn’t burning myself out working a 9-5. By looking after myself, it meant that I was able to produce higher quality work too. It really was a win win situation.
At the end of this internship, I was asked to stay on with the company, however, I had to get my own ABN, as they only use contractors. Working for myself has so many positives, so I took this opportunity to create a business (rather than just register myself as the business). The name and branding took a little while to finalise, but it really is true that the best ideas come to you at the least expected times.
Building a business doesn’t happen overnight though and I couldn’t have done it without the support of my family and friends. Many experiences along the way have helped me to build this business too (besides my marketing degree). My blog, being the head of marketing at Curtin Marketing Association and my internship all taught me how to build websites (on multiple platforms), create email marketing campaigns and social media campaigns. Never undervalue that unpaid experience!
So, here we are, three quarters through my first year of business! It’s certainly had its ups and downs, along with some steep learning curves that they just don’t teach you at university. Now that I’ve graduated from university though, I’m excited to fully focus on LBD Digital and growing it, because this is just the start.