Our biggest hope for you, this year, is that you win. How are things going so far?
One of the secrets to getting where you want to be is by using the tools in your hand to get there. Your mobile phone is such a tool, and we know you cannot keep away from it. What are you always checking on your phone?
Even if you refuse to tell us, on the comments section, we now have data from Opera and Wordreader showing that Kenyan women are on the internet a lot more than men. It’s actually twice as much. On average, Kenyan men go online only 4 times a day while women do so 8 times.
You don’t have to feel any sense of shame because you waste an hour or two, or more browsing on your phone. We only found that statistic because of the typical internet rabbit hole. And as long as you’re here, you’ve made up for that. You’re good.
As a woman entrepreneur, you have to think about winning as well. Are you spending your data bundle to increase your business revenue?
Janet Muriu does so in a great way. She has actually molded everything around her business at the convenience of her mobile phone. I think you will learn something from how she runs Rika Wardrobe.
So, what Rika Wardrobe does is avail outfits for Kenyan ladies and at pretty affordable prices. Only sh.600 per piece. Probably because Janet drives down her operating costs by running a fair portion of her business from her mobile phone.
One thing she does is underrated by many women entrepreneurs. She enables you to “pair your tastes” with the outfit she sells.
Janet says, “We heavily rely on our phones to take quality photos of our merchandise and post them on our social media pages.” For one, it means she’s wise to invest (quality photos) in the free marketing tool that is social media.
She must also be tracking her data bundles from Safaricom, otherwise this would not be sustainable. You will find that buying one over extended periods, like the 30 day bundles, is a simple way to develop the discipline of living within a budget. If you can’t save, you can’t make money either.
Another thing to do is, as Janet says, “remain in constant communication with our customers, suppliers and courier service providers at different stages of our business.” Again, this is all through her phone. You can do it through DM, Whatsapp, Mail or an old-fashioned phone call.
We’re going to immortalize one thing she said. “Everything is a click away.
“Our business entirely relies on mobile phone. Getting online to make follow ups and clarify things is also easy and fast through the mobile phone.
Through my phone I would know; what is new in the market? What is trending? What is bad or good for business? What are my competitors up to? Upcoming events to feature Rika Wardrobe on?” I’m certain she’s seen something on this page.
She’s pretty savvy. She handles cash flow through e-payments. “Receiving payments via M-Pesa and paying our suppliers has made the running (of) our business very smooth.
“Mobile loans have helped with cash flow which has guaranteed continuous supply of our stock. We also rely on mobile banking for activities such as saving.”
When we asked about her phone growing Rika Wardrobe she didn’t complain about Mshwari loans. We can only conclude that she is a proper working capital manager and keeps her cash windows short. Another mobi-loans platform she uses is, the Barclays-Safaricom production, Timiza App found on Google Play.
I don’t want to tell you, the boss, everything. But there’s even the lock account, on Mshwari, for you to build short-term reserves, so to speak, if your business needs cash injections frequently.
It’s not all glossy though. There are things she would like to be improved upon. She wants customers informed of sold outfits, in real time, as they scroll through for the best pickings and to alert them offline on new arrivals. I’m sure you’re not literally always on your phone.
“Clients get disappointed whenever they want to pay for outfits only to learn that they are already sold but remain displayed on our pages without any notification.”
First appeared here