While networking and trying to find a full-time marketing position, I was offered an opportunity to provide social media management and training as a contractor. After several months of contracting, I decided to use my knowledge, skills and experience to create my own marketing consulting business.
SCORE helped me succeed by allowing me to share my social media knowledge with their clients, prospective clients, mentors, and leaders at statewide, district and chapter events. As the owner of a start up business, I understand the struggles of entrepreneurs and am able to translate that understanding into presentations which contain practical information. Having gone through the SCORE mentor training process, I also understand what is expected of a SCORE mentor. The exposure to SCORE's clients and mentors elevated my presentation skills as well as drove me to learn even more about social media and current online marketing trends.
My success have been measured by the support from SCORE and my clients. Within the first few months of forming my company, I was one of four featured speakers at a statewide SCORE Minnesota Social Media Boot Camp. From there, my business exploded. I was busier than I wanted to be. In the past 18 months, I have been able to raise my pricing to match the level of demand. Organizations continue to request me as a speaker, and each speaking engagement results in new leads and new clients. I was even hired by SCORE Minnesota to serve as their Internet Marketing Consultant and have been traveling around the state teaching both SCORE mentors and clients about social media. I also organized the largest fundraising event of the year for SCORE Minnesota, Social Media Boot Camp II, which raised more than $70,000 in cash and in-kind donations for the District.
My business coach, Sue McCloskey, has been extremely helpful, especially early on in my business formation. First, Sue invited me to meet with one of her clients to discuss my services. After that meeting, Sue and I met several times as she helped me refine my business concept and my sales approach. Now that Sue has taken on the role of Chapter Chair of St. Paul SCORE, she continues to provide support and opportunities.