This month, Simone Yvette Halloran of Little Birdy Web & Design, a Kangaroo Island born business, shares her thoughts with us. Simone has created our website, some of our printed materials and our monthly eNewsletter.
Tell us about Little Birdy Web & Design
Little Birdy Web & Design was born out of a need on Kangaroo Island for a local website designer. In the years that I worked in creating adverts for The Islander newspaper, I had many local business owners approach me and asked if I created websites independently. They were small business owners looking to get their online presence started.
At first, I began very small. I just did a website here and there, mostly just to help business owners for whom I was already creating adverts.
At the end of 2013, I moved to Victor Harbor and started Little Birdy Web & Design. I have remained very close to Kangaroo Island, as it will always be in my heart, and I still get the majority of my work from island businesses.
What is new in your business worthy of news?
In the past few years of operating Little Birdy Web & Design, I have had to evolve what the business offers to fully cater for my clients’ needs.
At first, I was purely doing website design with the occasional matching business card, logo, flyer, and Facebook cover image being the normal brief. However, I have learned that building a website for a business is not enough to help a business succeed in such a competitive arena, and that has become my main focus with Little Birdy.
Websites are only one tool in a great array of necessary tools to make a business succeed, and I wasn’t happy only offering my clients this and sending them on their way to discover the rest.
So, Little Birdy has recently adapted and I offer website design, business branding and online and print marketing design (as per usual), plus real marketing strategies to convert website traffic into actual paying customers/clients.
This is an exciting time for me and in the near future, I hope to expand to employing a few staff who will specialise in these different areas, and host workshops and networking events.
How does or can your business contribute to the business community? (ie provide employment, function room, catering, hire equipment, support services etc)
I believe that offering local Kangaroo Island businesses a real online presence with a great-looking and well-functioning website, good social media presence, and great marketing materials and strategies is a win-win for local businesses to stay strong and keep growing.
While not officially listed, Little Birdy is very much a part of the Kangaroo Island Art Feast committee as well as Business Kangaroo Island, and even though I am not connected to the island community as much as I was when working at the paper, these two non-profit groups really give me great joy and I still feel that sense of connection to islanders and the businesses.
Why did you join Business Kangaroo Island and how do you see it helping your business?
I think any business or group that helps other businesses grow is a great and admirable thing. Whether I was helping Business Kangaroo Island with its website and printables or not, I would still have joined. I am a part of many Australian online and in-person networking groups who are also focused on businesses helping other businesses, entrepreneurs helping entrepreneurs, and women business owners helping other women business owners with support, networking, and knowledge and I have personally learned more in the last few years than I ever had from tertiary study.
I believe that Business Kangaroo Island should be supported and encouraged as much as possible, and I want to acknowledge that the volunteering committee are a dedicated team of business owners themselves with a wealth of practical knowledge.
Business Kangaroo Island is helping my business learn, grow and evolve, and I believe it will help others too.
What are some positive opportunities you see for Kangaroo Island businesses in the future?
Even though Kangaroo Island businesses can do it tough at times, I feel there is always hope and optimism within the community for businesses to keep evolving, keep developing, keep growing. Those that have survived the hard times are doing something very right.
I personally believe that the new airport will bring some fresh opportunities for local businesses. I know that within the community there are mixed opinions on the subject and this creates uncertainty and hesitation among business owners. But it does open up great discussion about ideas and growth for the community. The cruise ships visiting the island is also an exciting development for local business owners.
I’m reminded of a TED talk speaker I watched online recently who mentioned that there are five essential elements that lead to business success: Ideas, Team, Business Model, Funding and Timing. Of all five elements, he said that Timing was the number one key to success. A business being in the right place at the right time and offering what no other has thought of is the key to big successes like Facebook and YouTube, and that same principle can be applied to island businesses too.
I believe that any new opportunities that arise on Kangaroo Island should be seen with great excitement in the business community, and as a great time to evaluate your business and where you want it to head, or perhaps as a chance to start something new entirely. Embrace the new, and keep Kangaroo Island moving forward.
Many thanks to Simone Halloran of Little Birdy Web & Design for being our Featured Business. Head to her website for more information or download her flyer below.