From the looks of Caroline O’Neill’s transit van, she can more than dig it.
In fact there doesn’t seem to be much that the mother of two can’t take on thanks to her trusty transit and a can-do attitude.
Always seen in her “pride and joy”, the transit van, Caroline can often be seen putting together a pop up shop at the drop of a hat, picking up the latest lines of stock for customers or even throwing props from her dad’s farm into the back of the van and creating an inspiring window display for her store in Dungannon.
Having trained as an Occupational Therapist, Caroline took the plunge 10 years ago and completely changed career direction.
With some experience in the world of retail during her studying, she knew it was something she enjoyed and was an opportunity to be her own boss – something that she had always dreamed of.
“Ten years ago I took the huge leap into self employment. I do feel being only 24 helped me to take that leap without fear and I had huge support from my family which also helped me make the decision.”
Having researched the market she decided on childrenswear as the focus for her new store. But not just run of the mill kids clothes.
“I sell Childrenswear for boys and girls newborn to age 16. We specialise in Occasionwear and have people travel from all over the country to get that special outfit for a wedding, confirmation, communion.”
Established in 2008 DIGG is now the leading designer kids boutique in Northern Ireland. It stocks from newborn to age 16 in boys and girls clothing. Based in Dungannon, Caroline has also worked hard to develop a strong online presence as well with lots of interaction on social media through Snapchat, Facebook and Twitter. The shop is a mainstay of the local community, with the shop becoming a popular stopping off point for people to come in for a chat and enjoy the craic.
And Caroline and her team play an active role in raising money for charities, “We are more than just a clothes shop, we are a group of individuals who care about people. We raise money for Cash for Kids on a regular basis.”
For Caroline, the business doing well is of course important but DIGG isn’t just about the retail side of things.
“I don’t like to think of DIGG as just selling clothes. We have activities and events in our shop to reward our customers for all their support. We interact and stay in touch with our customers on social media and we love to see how they all grow and achieve throughout the years.”
Caroline’s focus on social media and digital media is one she would advise any self-employed person to pursue once they’ve researched and focused on a product or service that there is a clear need for.
And when she does get the time to relax it is with a night on the sofa with a glass of wine on a Saturday night with a few nibbles and Netflix. “If someone asked me to choose between a night out or a night in. The sofa wins hands down. Life is so busy, I just like to put my feet up and chill with my husband.”
To find out more about Digg Childrenswear log onto:
Check out Caroline’s colourful snapchat – cazdigg
We met Caroline at the recent Mums at Work event in Portglenone. Mums at Work is a growing and powerful group of business women, whose goal is to build friendships and build their businesses. They focus on supporting one another personally and professionally via a networking facility for working mothers providing advice and support for inspiring and ambitious working mums.
For further information on Mums at Work, check out the Facebook page.