Lottie Bodilly, founder of The Adult Bible website explains why she set up this information hub for young people.
Lottie Bodilly is the founder of The Adult Bible, a website which was created as a central resource for people starting out and who need practical, non technical advice on those life skills that aren’t usually covered in an over stretched education system. The website covers finance, contracts and agreements, tax, property matters and beyond in a common sense and easy to understand way.
Here Lottie tells us what gave her the idea and her journey in setting up and populating the website.
As a young entrepreneur, who has had personal experience of many of the issues she writes about, Lottie also shares her experiences of setting up a business, the challenges and what she has learnt along in the process.
What made you start up The Adult Bible website?
I started The Adult Bible because I felt there was a gap in the market in regards to teaching young people life skills.
What was your experience of looking for financial information?
There’s a minefield of information on the Internet and it’s difficult to sift through it all to understand exactly what you need to know, without being sold something too.
Where did you go for advice?
I mainly spoke to industry professionals but also took reference from the Government and Money Saving Expert websites for certain topics. Other than that, I spent a long time researching and verifying all the various topics that I now have on The Adult Bible and built up a bank of information.
Are there any trigger points when a young person will start seeking out advice?
Absolutely, The Adult Bible is targeted at 17-35 year olds because at 17 you can apply for your driving license, which for most is, the first step to independence. Then for a large portion of this age group there’s university and so young people are suddenly on their own, cooking for themselves and needing to work out household bills, much of which isn’t taught in school. After university, the natural step for a lot of young people is to move into rented accommodation and/or get their first proper job, both of which are daunting and require a lot of know how in terms of processes, especially the former. After this, people go onto buying their first home, which is another milestone in adulthood and requires a lot of research. Even the basics of where to begin can hinder people from buying.
How do you think the situation for young people could be improved and by whom?
For starters, having one place young people can go to for all their questions on adulthood is essential, something that is quick and easy to access. Secondly, although teachers are already vastly over stretched in terms of the current curriculum I think that being taught these sort of life skills in schools would be hugely helpful, even if as an after school activity or part of PHSE.
Which social media channels have you tried and what has been most successful and why?
I’ve have tried them all; Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and Pinterest. Facebook and Instagram have worked especially well for me because I schedule lots of content at the beginning of the month and then populate with topical posts intermittently throughout the month. To date the page has over 10,000 followers on Facebook, which is great. I’m also in the process of populating our YouTube channel with How To videos and so I hope that will help, and be popular.
What have been your main challenges in setting up The Adult Bible and how have you overcome them?
The biggest challenge is juggling starting a business with a full time job, and life. I’ve also recently just bought and moved into my first house and so fitting everything in has been tricky but it’s about making sacrifices and sometimes that means that I work quite late, or have get up very early to work before work. Also, it’s tough going it alone. I don’t have a business partner or a co-founder and so every decision I make is by myself and the only person driving the business forward is me, at the end of the day. It’s very rewarding and I’m so pleased I’ve got The Adult Bible this far but I’m also aware that if I don’t keep pushing and working on it, it just stops. We liken it to pushing a snowball up a hill – if you stop pushing forward, it’ll slowly fall back down. I do, however, have lots of great people around me that I talk through various decisions and ideas, and many that write content, which is a huge helping hand.
What would you like to hear someone say about The Adult Bible?
That it has helped them and benefited their life in some capacity.
Have you learnt anything new or unexpected from your project?
I’ve learnt so much from starting The Adult Bible. I’ve learnt how to build and design a website, and a company. Probably the most important skills I’ve learnt, though, is how to speak to people from all walks of life, be it in a meeting with professionals or over the phone with a blogger and also, how to ask for help or advice.
Have you benefited from networks or mentoring?
Absolutely. It’s really important to join networks when you start a business, even if just to observe from the outset. I joined a female founders group on Facebook very early on and spent a while just reading through comments for advice and suggestions. Whenever I had a question or needed recommendations, you’d get around 10-20 answers, which was so helpful. Some of those contacts I still speak to. I am now on a mentor program and waiting for my first mentor to be selected.
What piece of advice would you give to someone looking to start out?
My first piece of advice is to just do it. You can spend hours, months or even years thinking about an idea and wrestling with it in your head, but you won’t really know how far you can push it until you try. My second piece of advice is, talk to anyone and everyone. Whether you’re at a dinner party or work event, be inquisitive and ask questions, because you never know when you’ll meet someone that could change your life.