Why Success Stories?
I am sharing a success story I completed a couple of weeks ago. I am short on time this week but want to keep on schedule with my weekly commitment to write and post my blog. I hope I do not disappoint by giving you something a little different than the usual ‘women in business’ musings. Success stories are one of our most prized and most underused assets. If you can weave a tale that highlights the benefits your service or product provides, it will cut to the chase in explaining your value. To paraphrase my colleague Roberta Ryan, “Success stories are like condiments, they add spice to your marketing efforts.” I support you to write up your success stories and practice sharing them when you are asked “What do you do?” I would be thrilled if you want to share yours and if you are so inclined, please post your story in the comments below.
The Story of Christine Martin and Firefly Creative Company http://www.fireflycompany.com
About three or four years before I sold Making It Big (MIB), I contracted with Christine Martin to design, develop, and manage production of the MIB mail order catalog. At that time, she was a self-employed graphic designer working out of her home. That was the beginning of our relationship. Fast forward to 2004; when I sold MIB, I became her business consultant!
Within a year or two after I left MIB, Christine went from being a solo-preneur to forming a partnership with a colleague who had complimentary production and project management skills. Together they began Firefly Creative Company. Located in Sonoma County, Firefly Creative Company specializes in advertising and marketing communications for print, web, TV and radio, serving Santa Rosa, San Francisco and the North Bay.
I worked with Christine and her partner for several years and when the collaboration ended, I guided them out of the partnership and assisted Christine in forming her own firm. Once Christine was on her own, we worked together to identify the ideal clients, determine areas for growth, manage the financial picture, and expand the team. Being the “creative” person, Christine needed help putting together the systems and protocol that would support Firefly’s growth.
In the eleven years that we have been working together, I meet monthly with the in-house bookkeeper to review the financials, departmental workloads and support the business to stay profitable as well as identifying and incorporating employee benefit programs. Each year we create the annual budget and map out the company’s goals for growth, expansion, and profitability.
Over time, Christine has built her business to serve her ideal clients and the business has grown from awesome to amazing. Firefly is now a million dollars plus business and Christine continues to rely on me for guidance, support, financial review and whatever else comes up. When I sent this story to Christine for approval, she reminded me not to “underestimate the value that you have added by being the calm in the storm through all of the changes.” Her appreciation is what makes my job the best in the world!