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In today’s episode, we’re thrilled to welcome Rebecca from Hatch! Join us as we delve into the intricacies of launching an e-commerce brand in the midst of COVID-19, the art of crafting a unique brand identity, and navigating the complexities of product development. Rebecca shares her invaluable insights and top strategies for entrepreneurs looking to make their mark in the world of online business. Get ready to discover actionable advice, relatable stories, and expert tips to elevate your e-commerce game.

In today’s episode,  you’ll learn how to:

  • Develop a strong brand identity and understand your target market effectively before proceeding with product development.
  • Stand out in the market by having a unique point of view and focusing on solving specific problems for your customers.
  • Utilize mentorship and expert advice to navigate the challenges of sourcing products and other aspects of starting a business.
  • Take actionable steps towards entrepreneurship while being mindful of the risks involved and the necessary investments of time and money.
  • Strike a balance between digital marketing efforts and building human connections with your audience to create authentic relationships and enhance your brand’s visibility.


Rebecca Dickson: It’s going to take time. It’s going to take money. It’s an investment. You’re probably not going to get paid for the first year, two years that you have this business.

That’s perfectly normal. So it’s, are you willing to take those risks? Are you willing to sacrifice those things to put everything into a brand?

Dahna Borg: Hi, and welcome to the bright minds of e-commerce podcast. I’m Dahna founder of bright red marketing, and after helping so many businesses in the e-commerce space over the years, I wanted to bring you the best advice Australian experts in e-commerce and e-commerce store owners had to offer. If you want relatable stories and actionable advice and the latest Facebook advertising strategies, you’re in the right place. so let’s get into today’s episode

Today, we’re here with Rebecca from hatch. Welcome Rebecca.

Rebecca Dickson: Hi, thank you for having me.

Dahna Borg: Thanks so much for joining us. So I am obsessed with your business.

I love what you do, but can you tell everyone what it is that you do and how it all started?

Rebecca Dickson: Yes, so, I launched Hatch pretty much out of COVID. I come from a background in fashion, working in fashion design for 10 years. And I just noticed that there was a huge need for people wanting that support to start their e commerce brands in apparel design, product development. It’s obviously quite a tricky thing to do on your own.

So, Hatch was born out of sort of supporting people in their endeavor to start their own businesses and help them with that product development side.

Dahna Borg: Yeah, I love it. I’ve been going through your website and I really love your process. Like it’s not just, we’re going to build a website. It’s not just, we’re going to help you with the product design. Like you help with everything. So let’s start with what is, I suppose, some key strategies to crafting a really unique brand.

Cause I know that’s something you focus on.

Rebecca Dickson: Yeah. I guess, for me, as you said, you know, we do work on the whole process with our clients. So we’re pretty much a one stop shop. So we’ll do the toward creating your brand aesthetic, what that looks like, uh, helping you with your target market, and then, like I said into the design, development manufacturing, helping source your suppliers, uh, all the way through to production and also freight and logistics.

But I guess the biggest thing that we’ve found is. Really, when people come to us, if they’ve got a really solid idea maybe some products that they are referencing or even just having a really good idea about this sort of brand direction and target market is so important. And I think it’s something that a lot of people do sort of get lost and forget about, but, you know, it’s really hard to move on with the next steps without having a really strong idea and a strong idea of who your target market is.

Dahna Borg: Yeah. So we have lots of people come on and they talk about how they have to have that sort of point of difference. And that really does help people to stand out. Is that something that you help brands with or they kind of need to come to you with that already sorted?

Rebecca Dickson: I guess for me that’s sort of what um, helps me to decide what sort of clients I’m going to work with if someone’s got a really strong point of view if somebody is solving a problem, an issue that they want to solve and bring in a product to market that helps with that, that for me is someone I definitely want to work with for someone to have those sort of key points already sorted.

It just makes the process so much more exciting and more I can sort of do my job to the best of my ability when I have that information and I’m working with someone that’s obviously quite serious as well and has done that background research, you know, rather than someone just waking up in the morning and going, Oh, I’m going to start a brand today.

And I feel like designing clothes, um, which can happen a lot as well. So, I guess right at the beginning, I really sort of focus in with a client and a prospective client and yeah, work out exactly what they want. And if they’ve got that really strong point of view.

Dahna Borg: Yeah. I love that. So what would you say your like top tips and strategies are around product sourcing?

Because I know that’s a big thing that you help people with as well.

Rebecca Dickson: Top tips and tricks, I would say, really sort of learn from the experts, you know, find a mentor or find a business that can assist you or someone who’s got that background. Because it is. A very tricky, long winded process as well. I mean, when I first started my first brand back in 2012, 2011, and I spent five figures of my own savings.

I spent three years trying to find the right suppliers. And I had already come from a background in fashion, working for other people. And I found it so difficult just to find the right suppliers and get that process. Even just started, you know, you’re spending so much money, spending so much time, and you’ve got an idea and you’re ready to go for it.

The worst thing is to spend the next three years, you know, working with the wrong people and that kind of thing. So I think definitely if you can find a mentor or someone that can just help you and has someone who’s got that experience is. Really the best investment you can make.

Dahna Borg: I imagine it’s quite overwhelming too. Like I’ve heard people say, just go to Aliexpress. It’s like, have you ever been to Aliexpress? Like it’s, there’s so much that you have no idea what’s going on. You don’t know

Rebecca Dickson: There’s so

Dahna Borg: good. And if you’re trying to come up with something from scratch, like it’s fine if you want to make a dress and it’s, you know, just a normal dress, but if you want to come up with a unique product,

like, how do you do that?

Rebecca Dickson: if you’ve got that idea, that really strong idea and it is something different than, I mean, I mean, Alibaba is amazing for so many things. Even just something like perhaps packaging or, you know, like promotional caps or something for your business. Like, it’s great for things like

Dahna Borg: It’s got a purpose.

Rebecca Dickson: Exactly. But I think a lot of people get lost in that thinking that that’s what development is. That’s what the supply chain looks like. And really there’s so much more that goes into it. And it’s also creating relationships building those relationships over a long period of time that you actually can trust the factories that you’re working with and they’ll do things for you.

You know, they will help you. It gets them excited as well when it’s a new product for them to work on. so I think that there is benefits in using platforms like Alibaba, but. Yeah, there’s definitely so much more that goes into it.

Dahna Borg: Oh, of course. I think, I mean, as you said, finding someone that you can get advice from that’s kind of been there that can recommend people that can recommend things I think is just good business advice. Obviously, you can’t afford to do that when you’re starting out with every stage, but going with someone who sort of knows what they’re doing and who to contact is always a good, a good idea.

Rebecca Dickson: Yeah, absolutely. I mean, like yourself, you know, being in marketing and, you know, it’s the same thing giving those people, people come to you, your expertise and your advice. And you know, it’s, it’s really making those investments at the beginning, I think is super important and detrimental to starting off a business successfully.

Dahna Borg: Yeah. And I mean, your product is so important. Like you don’t want to get that wrong

Rebecca Dickson: No, it was pretty much everything. Isn’t it? Like next to marketing, it’s the products, everything. And then when you, if you’re lucky enough to get those sales coming in the door, the last thing you want is to not have the product there and ready or not be at the quality.

Dahna Borg: no, I love that. So obviously you’ve helped quite a few businesses through the startup phase. You’ve done it yourself many times. What are some of the biggest lessons that you’ve learned that, I mean, can apply to those listening?

Rebecca Dickson: I think just guarding a lot of people waste a lot of time talking and not actually doing I think. there is a lot of risk involved in it, being prepared with those things upfront. It’s going to take time. It’s going to take money. It’s an investment. You’re probably not going to get paid for the first year, two years that you have this business.

That’s perfectly normal. So it’s, are you willing to take those risks? Are you willing to sacrifice those things to put everything into a brand? I think there’s a lot of, especially with Instagram, you know, there’s. Influence of starting the brand that sort of thing making it look like it’s just so easy and that you can make money overnight and really that’s just not exactly half the time is, you know, there’s other people working behind the scenes for them to help them execute that it’s really not just them.

But it’s great marketing strategy to have that person as the face of the brand, obviously,

Dahna Borg: I mean, you got a following too. That helps.

Rebecca Dickson: Yeah, hundred percent. It’s great for just for getting, launching really, if you’ve got that built in database in a sense with followers. So, yeah, I think I think it’s just knowing the risks for just diving in head first and that’s what separate the people, the doers from the talkers.

That’s what I always say to people. I’m like, are you a doer or are you talker?

Dahna Borg: Yeah. Says me, who’s been talking about launching a brand that we talked about before this for years and never done anything about it. Apparently I’m a


Rebecca Dickson: fair, fair, fair, fair, Plate full with many other things,

Dahna Borg: To be fair, I already am running a business. There

Rebecca Dickson: Exactly. And that’s the thing, you can’t spread yourself too thin either, which you know, I have been guilty of doing the same thing. .

Dahna Borg: You touched on something briefly, and I don’t know whether this is something that you help people with, but I know it’s something of interest to a lot of people, whether they’re starting up or in business that you don’t pay yourself for the first year. Now, I obviously work with a lot of clients. You obviously with a lot of clients, I’ll often find that people will get into two, three years.

And they still haven’t worked out how to pay themselves. Obviously, when you’re starting out, you’ve got to be investing in the business and putting all the money back in. But do you have any like pricing tips to make sure that people don’t end up in a position where they can never pay themselves,

Rebecca Dickson: Well, at the beginning it there is a lot of heavy investment upfront in terms of cash and cash flow targeted towards scaling a business, launching a business first, and then scaling that up. I always say like, be mindful of not scaling up too quickly, but also not missing a boat.

Not scaling up quick enough. So it’s kind of finding that balance. And it’s really where you want to play certain investments into. If you’re lucky enough to perhaps have passive income from somewhere else, or you do have a day job or whatever that is, and you’re happy to continue investing that money and not paying yourself through the business in the first couple of years.

I think that’s fantastic. That’s amazing. If you can just focus on growing the business and perhaps your goal. is to not even generate any income. Perhaps it’s about exit strategy and selling that business off. So it really depends on what your motivation is, what your goals are, and I think as well understanding, just the capital that’s involved, the cash flow that’s involved, and also how much freedom do you really want in your business?

Are you happy to contract out to other people and perhaps paying other people before you pay yourself?

Dahna Borg: Yeah, I think it’s good. I think we have had some people on the show before that, uh, finance people and they go through these things in a little bit more detail, but it’s good for people to be aware of because I think a lot of people get a little bit disheartened when they start out and they’re like, Oh, I’m six months in and I haven’t made my, like, I haven’t paid myself yet.

And it’s like, well, starting an econ business is expensive.

It takes a lot.

Rebecca Dickson: It absolutely is. And that’s perhaps as well, you know, it’s what makes the difference between being an entrepreneur and not, and having that sort of business savviness in you is that there’s just things it’s not work and it’s a passion and you just love it so much that you will put everything into it, including your free time, basically, and hopefully it pays off.

You know, it’s a gamble. It’s a risk. It’s well, I guess it’s a calculated risk. Hopefully, hopefully if you’ve done your research definitely. Like, don’t be disheartened. I think that’s the like I said before it’s, you know, we’ve got this culture on Instagram, social media where everyone just looks like an overnight success and it’s just not the case. Never have I witnessed anyone be an overnight success since I’ve started doing this. And you know, it’s a long road ahead. And even the people that are doing amazing and scaling up and paying themselves, you know, there’s always that next step, that next step. And, you know, so, just you’re on your own path.

Stick to your path. know who your target market is, know what your brand is, know what your product is and just keep moving forward.

Dahna Borg: I love that. I think I saw, I don’t remember who it was, but there was a quote or a celebrity that was like, yes, I’m an overnight success that took 10 years to do.

Rebecca Dickson: Yes. Yeah.


Dahna Borg: I can’t remember

who it was. Yeah.

Like it’s one of those things that you’re like, yeah, I’m an overnight success quote unquote, but it took 10 years of prep to get that overnight.

Rebecca Dickson: Yeah. Yeah. Exactly. And to everyone else, it looks like, Oh, where has she come from? Oh, wow. What a success story. And I mean, incredible story. Her story is amazing. And I don’t know if you’ve read her book before. Samantha Wills book, it’s actually a really, really amazing read because she talks not just about, I guess, the logistical side of starting a business, but the emotional side as well, which we just touched on about, you know, feeling like you’re always behind or, You should be further ahead than what you are. And she really touches on all of that and speaks from an emotional side as well, which is so helpful. So I highly recommend her book

Dahna Borg: I’ll have to add it to the list.

What help with your facebook and instagram ads remember you can always book in a free strategy forward slash free dash strategy dash session we’ll run through all of your ads see what’s working and what’s not and no sales pitch i promise so let’s get back to today’s episode.

No, obviously you’re helping on these businesses. Marketing is obviously a huge part of that. Is there any sort of tips for , obviously you work specifically with startups. What sort of your recommendations for startups in terms of where to focus their efforts on marketing?

Rebecca Dickson: on marketing. I’d say have a good idea of what your budget is in terms of your product margin what your investment capital is for the first couple of years and how it would be best spent. Obviously that’s very dependent on your target market. I was just thinking today, so many businesses rely, like, literally every business relies on META.

Now, like, what would we actually do? And it’s just to think that they’re just in this absolute power seat. I guess it’s, for me, I’ve been starting to think a little bit outside the box, and what can we sort of do that’s beyond. Digital, like, is it going to change again? Is it going to become this sort of like more multi touch point?

Because right now it’s like everyone’s pushing meta and the prices are escalating and it’s a bidding war right now just to get one sale in the door.

Dahna Borg: that’s it. I mean, that’s what we do. And even we’re saying to clients, like, you need to make sure you have your eggs in other baskets other than us, because Facebook accounts go down. Ad accounts go down. You can lose your Instagram following. Like these things are not things that you own. And while you can have a lot of success with them, which we do it’s, it’s, you’re, you’re relying on Mr.

Zuckerberg and that’s a dangerous thing to put all of your, your eggs


Rebecca Dickson: it’s crazy, isn’t it? It’s yeah, it’s crazy how it’s just become this yeah, such a reliant thing.

Dahna Borg: Yeah. I’m hoping it gets a bit more human.

Rebecca Dickson: it’s amazing how many eyes that you can get in front of through digital, absolutely incredible, but using that in the best possible way for your brand, for your target market, but then also.

Looking at other things as well, looking at that human experience, I think I had a client last year that launched her clothing label in Tasmania and she came from a background of, uh, she had a retail store that was selling all the sustainable brands. So then she wanted to stock her own brand and start her own brand and she launched, she came to me in February last year and she launched everything stock.

Delivered by November. So really quick process. And she’s just completely blown up. She’s now selling the retail store and just focusing all her time on the brand itself. And a lot of the things that she’s been focusing on is obviously that database. That human to human contact that she had with her customers in store, but then also creating little events and things, local events, and just that sharing and that organic sharing went really well for her.

As well as balancing, obviously that with the digital marketing side has been amazing for her. So, so I think it’s balancing both of those things and showing that human side as well.

Dahna Borg: a hundred percent. I do sort of agree with you that I think there is going to be a rise in the, the human element. I think everyone’s getting a bit over everything being online, especially after COVID when it’s all we had,

I just think people really are appreciating that, human connection.

So I think it’s a really valuable opportunity for businesses.

Rebecca Dickson: Yeah, absolutely. You can even see it through um, through digital advertising, you know, like it’s become from spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on photo shoots, you know, brands were doing that to now it being quite organic and quite user generated and a little bit more human again through that side.

So yeah, it’s interesting to see how people are gravitating to that more accessible content.

Dahna Borg: It’s that realistic, it looking more natural, more like a real human uses it. Not to say that models aren’t real humans, but just that it looks, it’s got that real organicness to it. I think people respect that.

Rebecca Dickson: I guess they can see themselves in,

Dahna Borg: Yeah.

Rebecca Dickson: in that brand’s clothing and that, that, oh, that would work for me. I can look like that, you know, rather than it being this ultra edited, incredible, which I can appreciate. You know, like I said, I come from a fashion background. So I absolutely adore and love all those sort of old school, Gucci campaigns and they’re incredible and they’re an art form in themselves.

But, um. But I think we’re in a completely different time and space

these days and

people are really looking.

Dahna Borg: interesting to see how it all plays out.

Rebecca Dickson: Yeah, definitely. But but it’s great. Just any sort of content is just like to see anything creative and different is incredible.

Dahna Borg: I love it. So I’ll get into the last couple of questions we ask everyone. Do you have any strategies or habits that you follow each day to help you stay on track?

Rebecca Dickson: exercise. I think that’s so important. Getting a little more personal here, but yeah, definitely exercise. A little bit of just starting to learn how to meditate. I think it is so important to put yourself in sort of a different, that positive mindset. We get so overwhelmed with just everything every day.

So, there’s just so much content in our faces every day that it’s just to have that moment to yourself. That’s so important to me. I have to have that, especially with you. I’m switching from project to project that it gets a little bit hectic.

So, just taking that time out for yourself, exercise 100 percent and goal setting.

Dahna Borg: Love that.

Rebecca Dickson: It’s interesting to see how once you actually do write your goals down and you go back and you go, Oh, I actually feel like I’m in the right place. I’m exactly where I need to be.

Dahna Borg: I hilariously wrote my goals out for the year at the start of the year, completely forgot about them. Um, and then booked a solo trip to Italy for three weeks and was like, I wonder where that idea came from. And then I got home and found my goals for the year. And that was on the list.

Rebecca Dickson: Oh, see, I love that. That’s exactly, that’s exactly what I mean, like write your goals down, write little things down. And then even if it’s just in the notes on your phone, and then when you go back to them and you’re like, Oh, I actually did do that. Or that’s exactly me. And You’ll be surprised how just writing something down it’s sort of just playing in the back of your mind that you will make it happen.

Dahna Borg: Your brain’s like, all right, let’s work out how to do this now. Thank you.

Rebecca Dickson: But yeah, a trip to Italy sounds nice. I hope I get some time off next year to do that.

Dahna Borg: It was fantastic. Highly recommend. Um, do you have a favorite podcast? What’s

Rebecca Dickson: Um, I’m really loving Stephen Bartlett’s Diary of a CEO. definitely my number one recommendation. I’m constantly sharing episodes. and I actually really like Shameless, which is an Aussie podcast. Um, I love just how light and It’s just fun. bit of pop culture.

So I love that. but yeah, I highly recommend Diary of a CEO. There’s some really incredible episodes and just so different, like the diversity of the people that he gets in. The conversation is really organic. It’s just, it’s cool.

Dahna Borg: I love that.

Do you have a favorite business book?

Rebecca Dickson: Favorite business book? Actually, when I, was young, very, very young, a kid, I think I was like 12 years old, my dad gave me Rich Dad Poor Dad, I don’t know if you’ve heard of that book, it’s kind of, it’s like 90s classic business book, probably one of the first kind of, you know,

Dahna Borg: I love,

cause I have a photo of me at 11 reading at poolside. So

Rebecca Dickson: are you serious?

Dahna Borg: a

Rebecca Dickson: Oh my God, see, it’s hilarious, don’t you see? So I was my dad thinking giving me this book at 12, but I actually read it and, um, so I feel like that’s just a classic that you would just give to everybody and it’s probably more relevant today than, than ever.

Dahna Borg: Cause I don’t know that I’ve read it in the last decade.

Rebecca Dickson: oh yeah, and it’s just so 90s as well, like it just for me, I’m just like, oh, that is such a 90s, like classic business book. But I also love anything like Habits. There’s one I’m reading at the moment called Atomic Habits by

Dahna Borg: Love atomic

Rebecca Dickson: And that’s, yeah, that’s one of the ones, obviously that’s always highly recommended. Anything like that, anything that gives you goalposts, uh, little frameworks to work around.

I love that sort of thing because they’re actually actionable.

Dahna Borg: Yeah. I’m a big actionable person.

Rebecca Dickson: like, I said, you are not a talker,


Dahna Borg: And if people want to visit you and they want to learn more about you and your process, what’s the best way for them to do that?

Rebecca Dickson: Yes. So you can hop on to the Hatch website, which is gethatched. com. au. and also on Instagram at Hatch underscore Australia. I’m always on there sharing little tidbits and things. So

free to drop in and send me a message.

Dahna Borg: Well, thank you so much for joining us. It’s been an absolute pleasure having you on the show.

Rebecca Dickson: Thanks, Dahna.

Dahna Borg: Thanks for listening to the bright minds of e-commerce podcast. As always you’ll find the show forward slash episode 58. thanks for listening.

Dahna Borg

Author Dahna Borg

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