Small Business Story


1. First and last name: Jennifer Harris

2.
Company name: Key Lime Creative

3. Website address: http://www.keylimecreative.ca

4. Please describe exactly what your business does and your target market (ideal customer)

Key Lime Creative is a Graphic Design Studio. I work with small businesses to create the best marketing products suited to their business. I help them brand and identify their business through Graphic Design. I create on a daily basis everything from logos, business cards, brochures, magazines and trade show booths and every little thing in between. I work a creative network to bring your project to life – photographers, writers, web developers, marketers, producers and artists. My ideal client is someone who understands the need for great marketing materials

What makes your business different? What is that you do that makes your business unique.

I spend a lot of my time educating my clients. I want what’s best for them, so I hold their hands through the creative process. I think if they have all the tools they will make better decisions for their business. I don’t want to sell someone a flyer when really what they need is a direct mail post card or a website. Or have them spend money on a direct mail campaign when what they really need is a good solid brand to start with.

5. Why did you decide to start your own business? How did you get into your particular business? (i.e., saw a market need, discovered my passion, found a partner, etc.)

I have always wanted to be an artist. One of my report cards from grade school said “Jennifer needs to stop doodling on her work sheets” I attended college in the Advertising & Graphic Design Program – but never really did anything with it for a few years until I was offered a job at an ad agency as an admin assistant. It was there that I fell in love with the industry. More recently I have realized my passion for helping out other small businesses. This way I can do both. Doodle and help!

6. What’s the best part of being an entrepreneur?

I get to do the tasks I like the most and delegate everything else! I get to take holidays when I want and if my kids are sick I can stay home with them guilt free!

What’s the worst part of being an entrepreneur? I have to stay home with the kids when they are sick! I can’t pull the “I’m going to get fired” if I don’t go line! Being your own boss is sometimes not so hot. You have to have a lot of confidence and will power to get the jobs done that need to get done. If you are having problems with a client – it’s only you. There is rarely anyone there to back you up – unless you have a business partner.

7. How long have you been in business?

I opened my office on Main Street in Paisley on March 26th 2006.

8. How did you raise the start-up cash?

I borrowed $1500 From Community Futures to purchase a new computer and software. I had a fully furnished home office already and I was given the first 3 months rent free for my office space for helping doing some renovations and designing some business cards for the woman I was to share the office with. Other than that I didn’t need much except clients which came fast and steady once I got my Branding & Marketing in place.

9. Identify and discuss a few lessons you’ve learned as an entrepreneur?

Make sure you are ready! I jumped right in without having all my marketing in place first. I was busy for the first few months but then things started to slow down. I hadn’t worked on my business enough in the beginning to keep the momentum going. Don’t spend all your energy working in your business. Work on it. Customer Service is everything. If you say you are going to do something, do it! Even the smallest negative thing could back fire on you into something much bigger. I had problems managing my time at first – I was taking every job that came my way and was making promises I couldn’t keep. This lead to dissatisfied customers and poorly done work. I can’t pick and choose my jobs yet but I have become a lot better at managing the time that goes into them and all the other stuff that needs to get done as well. A really BIG lesson I learned the hard way? Don’t have a baby in the first 6 months of your business! Night time feedings and baby illnesses are not conducive to good work habits!

10. What advice would you give to an aspiring entrepreneur?

Go for it! Dream big, but have your procedure and policies in place when you begin. Branding your business is not just for large companies. It’s for tiny ones too. Having your Branding/Marketing professionally done right from the start will save you time & money in the long run.

11. Briefly, what are your goals and plans for the future?

My goals include creating a network of creative professionals who are able to bring rural communities like mine fantastic creative with ou
t a big city corporate budget. In the next 5 years I see myself creating a large publication catering to entrepreneurs and or children.

12. Any other information or advice you’d like to share?

My experience as an entrepreneur has had its ups and downs, but I wouldn’t have changed a thing.

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