Startup Stories: Growing with Social Media Education

Startup Stories: Social Media Education
The first step is to find someone to teach you what you want to know. The second step is to share what you know with others!

Startup Story:

Tell us about your product or service.
In 2012 I started teaching Social Media workshops, to explain what social media was, and how ordinary people-not geeks-not entrepreneurs- could use it to communicate. I had no idea who would sign up for these workshops. What I discovered was that the people were mostly ‘boomers’, eager to learn a new language that would allow them to embrace the future…and of course, see pics of their grandkids on Facebook…while not worrying about privacy.
My name is Cathy Burrell. I am an ordinary human being who teaches other human beings what social media is, and how to use it.

What inspired you to launch your business?
My name is Cathy Burrell. I am an ordinary human being who teaches other human beings what social media is, and how to use it.

In 1990 I opened the first of my Retail Clothing stores: Cavern Clothing Design in Abbotsford, BC Canada. Before I was a retailer, I was a fashion designer and produced a line of clothing under the Cavern Clothing label. In 2001 my husband and I moved to White Rock, BC,Canada and I opened a second store on Marine Drive in 2003. In 2008…after nearly 18 years in Retail, I decided to reinvent myself. I closed my stores, took a deep breath, and decided to go back to school.

I took a few writing courses, worked at a few odd jobs, and started to educate myself about a subject that was new to me: social media. I studied, I learned, I practiced, I kept learning, and in 2011 created a new business: Cavern Retail Consulting. My experience in retail was valuable. I had been a solo entrepreneur and had worked in every aspect of my business, from customer service to marketing to merchandising to buying. But the number one question I got from almost everyone I met as I started to make connections to market my business was:

“What is Social Media?”

What problem does your business or organization solve?
Most people know a little tiny bit about social media…but unless you are 20- something you did not grow up using a computer. Most folks 50+ have a learning disability when it comes to mastering new technologies.(the slogan ‘JUST DO IT’ JUST PISSES THEM OFF!) Before they start using them…they want to know WHY? Once they decide they would like to give them a try…then they want to know HOW?
I show them the why…and teach them the how.

What has been your biggest challenge and how are you working to overcome it?
Career transitioning at 46 has been my biggest challenge. I am overcoming it by educating myself in a field I discovered that I LOVE, and by teaching others the benefits of communicating using social media.

Give us one word that people might use to describe you.

How has Project Eve helped you and/or your business?
I read your tweets on Twitter and believe your message ‘No Sharp Elbows’ to be inspiring. I have also learned a lot from the articles you post on Twitter.

Give us an insider tip that relates to your industry.
Don’t put off educating yourself about Social Media because you don’t know where to start, or are worried the subject is too big and complex for you to master. Pick a point to start YOUR learning and continue practicing. You will be amazed how fast you learn!

Company: Cavern Retail Consulting


Follow my company on social media here: @CathyCavern


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