I was getting settled into my new role, Marketing Manager for an oil distributor. The commute was around 5 minutes, and life started to feel like it was starting to get a bit more settled.
The role was nothing like my past role though, it was a newly created position, and because of that, there wasn’t really a structure or anything to come into. I tried to get absorbed in the business, learn all I could about it, the industry and customers. The only problem was, I was coming up with ideas and a marketing plan, but it kind of fell on deaf ears. I just wasn’t that busy and the work I did have to do was quite mundane, which was a bad thing for me, I just started thinking about my business idea again!
I started the research process again, looking into outdoor maternity wear, things had started to progress in that market, but there still wasn’t anything available that was too similar to what I was thinking of doing. I wanted to create the range to a high standard and to similar technical specifications as your outdoor favourites, but with a bump in mind. There were a couple of jackets available, but the material wasn’t completely waterproof, or wasn’t breathable, or just didn’t have any features to them. The trousers situation wasn’t much better, there was one pair of showerproof trousers available, but again, they looked pretty heavy weight, and weren’t designed to a good specification.
I knew I also needed some evidence to prove to others, and myself, that my great idea would work. I put together a questionnaire on Survey Monkey, (a free online survey tool), and set out to get as many responses as possible.
- The majority of women still carried on with the activities they did pre-pregnancy, i.e. walking the dog, hiking, weekends camping, getting out with toddlers they may have
- A lot struggled to find anything suitable to wear, especially when it came to a waterproof jacket, and suitable trousers
- Many ‘made-do’ either borrowing something from a partner, or bought something in a bigger size. Neither option was flattering, and a jacket in a larger size couldn’t be worn again.
My idea had been validated, now to get on with the research, it was going to be a long slog, but something I was eager to do and looking forward to getting started.