Meet UK Inspiring Juniors 2018 winner Rose Dyson, from Barnsley.
1. How did you first get into technology?
My first experience of utilising technology was the exercise of social media for business. At the age of 15, when I created my business Pura Cosmetics, being a start-up enterprise, I was very very limited in terms of my marketing budget. Therefore, in order to spread the word about my venture and being part of the internet-savvy generation, I automatically set up Facebook, Instagram and Twitter business pages. Simply by posting just a couple of updates a day, the following across the networks increased significantly day by day. I remember looking online one day and seeing that the Pura page had something around 250 followers on Twitter and thinking wow – that’s amazing! I thought it was crazy how 250 people knew about my business. Now, the pages have thousands of followers – thousands of potential and existing, loyal customers. However, I really got into technology when I set live my e-commerce website back in March 2016. I love being able to edit my site and look at new orders coming through straight from my phone when I’m on the go! I love having the ability to fully control the set up of my website and making it’s look/image perfect for the target audience.
2. Tell us about your project.
My project is my cosmetics business, Pura Cosmetics, which is now my full-time job having completed my A levels and sixth form this summer! My business means that much to me – I feel married to it in a way but this is something I feel all entrepreneurs can relate to!
At the age of 15, I decided to take part in my high school’s enterprise competition whilst studying for my GCSE qualifications. I identified a gap in the cosmetics market and came up with the idea for Pura based on my love of quality, ethical beauty products and my frustration when my pocket money as a teen could never stretch to their often extortionate prices. So I set out creating recipes for my lip products in my kitchen. I invested just £25 as that was all I would part with in case it went wrong! I went on to win the school business contest back in June 2015 and the rest is history!
I now sell my pout-pleasing range through my e-commerce website (of course!) as well as via a range of independent department stores, gift shops and salons across the North of England. The brand has also been featured in nationwide beauty subscription boxes after being so popular on social media. I’m proud to have established a nationally recognisable brand whilst being in full-time sixth form education for the past two years.
3. What do you love about technology?
I love how technology’s a free, accessible tool for accelerating business growth! It’s unbelievable how I can use the internet to reach and make leads all over the world at the click of a button. I’m fortunate to know technology inside out being part of the generation that has grown up not knowing any different and this has certainly benefitted me immensely with my business venture. Technology is a great way to start up from scratch and young people with ideas for businesses should definitely give them a go and maximise tech to their advantage!
4. Who inspires you?
Umar Kamani of PrettyLittleThing.com is a huge inspiration to me. He founded an online fashion retailer with his brother Adam at the age of 24 and his success has been unbelievable with his current net worth standing at £250 million. Pretty Little Thing has grown drastically year on year since it’s creation in 2012. In 2014 the company was fulfilling around 20 orders daily; whereas, by 2015, the workforce was shipping over 20,000 orders a day! He created such success and growth through the power of social media and e-tailing by having a target audience of 12 – 25 year olds - the internet savvy generation. He also managed to get A list celebrities such as Nicki Minaj, Rita Ora and Miley Cyrus wearing his clothing range and posting photos of themselves on Instagram.
Being in a similar female-orientated field to Umar and being an online retailer myself, I would love to follow in his footsteps. Now I continue to increase my social media activity and seek exposure from celebrities and influencers just like he did. It’s just proof that age doesn’t define you and young entrepreneurs can go against the odds and becomes extremely successful, even millionaires by the end of their twenties! Hard work certainly pays off!
5. What is your ultimate dream for the future?
My ultimate dream is to conquer the worldwide lip care market and I know the way to do this is through technology! Technology in many ways – from more efficient manufacturing processes to the distribution to customers, global marketing strategies to connecting with new stockists and firms to work and collaborate with. I hope that one day Pura Cosmetics will be an internationally recognisable brand and the go-to lip care product for consumers all around the globe.