How did you come up with the idea for Groovy Games?
After looking for alternate forms of kids entertainment, something different to the usual clown, jumping castle idea. I also was interested in owing my own small business and being able to mold that together with my want for working with kids.
What sort of market research did you do before getting the idea started?
We were in contact with a Sydney based business who run similar activities, who gave us a lot of support and ideas. Also spoke to families (mainly mothers) to gage if this type of service would be appreciated.
How you did you get it all started?
I started Groovy Games on my own in late 2005. Once it got too much for me I searched for a business partner who shared the same passion and drive, I found Alison and now we are a team to be reckoned with. The interesting story behind how our partnership began is that we met over the internet and agreed to go into business together before we even met in person! A Big gamble that has paid off. I simply advertised on a small web site for a business partner, had a few replies and based on the answers to some indepth questions I targeted Alison. We chatted a few time by email and then agreed to meet. The rest is history!
How did you promote the business early on and what sort of marketing do you do now?
To start with we had a small advert in the Melbourne’s Child. Followed by other adverts in small media, plus the internet. Currently we are working by word of mouth and I spend a lot of time researching different ways to advertise using the internet, blogs and forums.
What problems have you faced and overcome?
Money is always an issue and never an easy one to overcome! Self esteem and drive is an issued that can become a problem when facing finacing problems. I have overcome this by finding the best mentor I could. I researched for small business help on the internet and came across Fix My Business, a small business themselves, run by a lady named Kathie Holmes. She is fantastic at helping you overcome those emotional hurdles and keeping your mind on track. I owe a lot to Kathie!
Another major issue, particularly in this business was insurance. The premiums for this type of thing are extraordinary and looked like taking us to breaking point. Again my angel from Fix My Business researched and found us the best deal.
What would you have done differently?
I’m not sure there is much I would have done differently. Perhaps I rushed things too quick at the beginning, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. I often jump in the deep end – how else will you learn to swim?
Tell us a bit more about your affiliation with the Business Mums Network.
We are a silver member of Business Mums Network. BMN is a fantastic community for small businesses all over Australia (and not only for mums!) I came across it a few years ago, again while researching small business on the internet. It is a great reasearching tool for everything you need to successfully start and run a small business from home. It has many many members with a very helpful and friendly forum where you can ask any number of questions, participate in feedback and help other members develop their ideas. It’s definably THE place to be for small business people.