Colleen Hall on Discovering her Passion and Creating Jamoji App
What was the path that led you to discover your passion for technology and creative industry?
There is not one single thing I can pinpoint as to how I got here, but from a series of events and experiences I've build up the courage to leap and welcome the unknown.
I'd first witness Kim Kardashian enter the market in December 2015 and I really didn't think much of it, then with the increasing use of Whatsapp I'm able to keep in touch with my family in Jamaica via text. Texting in Patios allowed me to see the need as the Jamaican dialect didn't match the "standard."
How did the idea of Jamoji app come about? What gaps did you identify and how do you hope to fill that gap with your product?
As emoticons are evolving and expanding its reach to do the same (within technological limits). It is fun to express ourselves in picture text, but the industry expansion does not necessarily mean everyone is represented.
From personal experience, I know I'm more engaged when I feel included. Most of us use our mobile devices daily if not more makes a difference when our personal beings look like us and we can relate. That in return increases engagement and thus productivity/interest/production.
It is not always possible to use single every day, Jamoji intends emoticon that is preinstalled on our mobile devices, but Jamoji sets to influence a custom formula per individual preferences and need one culture at a time.
Jamoji is a lifestyle emoticon mobile application that currently provides picture text images of Jamaican culture. We have taken into account Jamaican culture and customs in terms technology savviness and accessibility.
Once you decided to pursue your vision of Jamoji app, how long did it take you to bring it to reality?
It took about 90 days from idea to live Apple Store and Google Play download. We worked tirelessly to move quickly and with purpose.
What has been the most challenging part of moving from idea to execution?
Starting. Especially, being self-funded, but I quickly learned that's the best part. It's not easy taking a chance on oneself. I'm affirming that I believe in me. Then, failure means "you're full of yourself." Well, I can't ask of others what I'm not willing to do myself. Once you get in, there is no turning back and that's the greatest enjoy- trusting oneself.
What is the most important lesson you have learned about 'making things happen' despite rejections, failures, and disappointments? How did you deal with them?
It's been a joy making and being a part of something. Seeing my application come to life from a simple conversation is quite remarkable. Rejection and failures before, during and after are route markers, time savers and exercise. Welcome it. My mom is always reminding me that "every disappointment is an appointment" and appreciate it for what it is because its that inner whisper leading you to what's yours.
How would you describe your experience as a woman in technology and how has it built your character?
My background is in economics and financial services, this is my first venture in Tech. In Tech, you can do whatever you want when you have funding. Now, getting funding is another story.
What advice would you give to someone who is embarking on their journey to building a business?
Not everyone is going to see your dream. And many will not believe in it either, but thats ok. As long as you see it and you're focused- see it through.