The Start-Up Files: Lottie Dalziel from Banish
Back in March 2018 when Lottie Dalziel first started Banish, an online store and education platform helping Australians reduce their waste, it was because she wanted to live her own life more sustainably.
"I was really green to the whole concept and was really excited to make sustainable changes," she explains. "The only problem was I found it really difficult to find credible information and legitimately 'good' products with no plastic packaging."
She knew that for people to change, the process had to be easier. So she launched Banish with just 20 products on offer. Now, a little over two years later, she has nearly 400 and is growing. Impressively, to date, Banish has helped over 160,000 people reduce their waste.
"As my journey continues so does the content and products we stock. I am constantly looking for new sustainable switches and alternatives and finding the simplest way to help people live better," she says.
To find out more, we asked Lottie to explain a little bit about her time launching her start up and what's she's learned along the way.
Lottie! Start-up life isn't always easy, tell us, what's been the most challenging part of your start-up experience?
"I find it really difficult to slow down and take a break! Growing your own business is kind of like a garden... the more you water it, the more it will grow! So I am working hard on not working so hard and giving myself time out to recharge and refuel."
When it comes to content marketing, what have you found most effective?
"Content is key! Banish is all about providing people with simple information, that is easy to follow and understand. Whether it is written content, YouTube videos, Instagram stories or testing out TikTok, content is the core of what we do. Ultimately, content is a great way to build brand loyalty and provide your audience with invaluable information.
What has surprised you the most about founding your start-up?
"The support from other start-ups. People are so willing to help one another out, especially when you hit a low point because chances are they've been there too and know how you're feeling!"
What skills do you think start-up founders need today?
"A willingness to adapt to change. If 2020 has taught us anything, it is that no one can predict the future. I think what founders need is an openness to change. It's about being open to the unexpected and willing to change as our environment does."
What is your best advice for e-commerce start-ups that are struggling or about to launch?
"To value honesty, transparency and connection. Even though we are seeing a huge rise in the number of people shopping online it doesn't mean that customers want to be treated like a number. Don't be afraid to connect with your audience whether it is showing the face behind the brand on social media, giving a customer a call if there was an error with their order and being open about what's not working. Customers are still looking for community and connection even if it is online."
What are is another start-up that you think is killing it right now?
"Hatch - I have loved watching them completely transform their business in response to COVID."
So, what's next for Banish? What can we look forward to!
"Without tooting my own horn, I host a podcast called Sustainability Further which talks about transparency and sustainability in big businesses and social enterprises. I am also in the process of launching my own brand called Little Pepino and I am sharing my steps to building the brand each day on Instagram."