Success Stories

Imagine That Creative

A failing national economy, an iffy local tourist industry, businesses being extremely conservative with their marketing dollars…Imagine That Creative, Inc. faced all these obstacles when it opened its doors for business in August of 2008. “We really questioned the wisdom of starting a new business given the local and national economies,” said Eric Ojala, Customer Service and Sales Director.

Imagine That Creative is a business-to-business company offering Web and marketing services to small businesses in the mountain resort areas of central Colorado. It started as a Web company, limited to building websites for small businesses in Summit County.

“One of our clients suggested we contact the SBDC and get some help thinking through the growth of our business,” said Jeff McElhattan, Marketing Director.

Tom Fellner, CEO and Creative Director states, “The SBDC has become a very important part of our business. It provides more than just a one-time counseling session; we use the SBDC to help us process major decisions. The wisdom and experience the SBCD brings to the table has helped us avoid doing some negative things as well as understanding the positive things we need to do. We don’t make major decisions without consulting the SBDC first.”

In spite of all the external factors working against a new business startup, Imagine That Creative is doing well. It currently employs two part-time employees and will be adding a fulltime employee in 2011. “We are in the business-growth business; the SBDC has helped us grow so we can serve our clients better.”

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Dynamic Roots Herbals

Dynamic Roots began laying down roots in 2013 with the SBDC. Dynamic Roots was inspired by 3 very passionate Rocky Mountain herbalists with the goal to grow, teach and share handcrafted herbal remedies that truly work! We now have over 40 products ready for market, a healthy membership, a distributors wait list and impressive first 2 years of sales. The SBDC helped facilitate taking our creative excitement and manifesting it into a business to be very excited about! Now that takes experience, fortitude, patience and dedication. And this is what we have seen and grown from.

Dynamic Roots cultivates vibrant herbal remedies that support the body’s seasonal rhythms and is working toward becoming a leading producer of handcrafted herbal remedies based upon high altitude grown medicinal herbs.

The SBDC continues to be instrumental in our foundational strength and future growth. And it’s fun! We have benefited tremendously from the SBDC in the following key areas of development:

  • Growing a multi-faceted, creative idea into a focused plan of action with business classes, private consultation and multiple resources
  • Continually setting business foundation that can support future movement with less risk, increased performance and smarter capital investment
  • Financial and budgeting consultation and education that is beyond valuable
  • Evaluating business planning from bigger picture goals to the finer details of marketing and sales strategies and keeping those details real and manageable

Based in Carbondale and Nederland, CO, Dynamic Roots has seen sales grow 6x, dozens of product formulations go to market and we are growing by leaps and bounds. We are so grateful and look forward to our continued work with SBDC!

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Dog’s Next Best Friend

Dog’s Next Best Friend is an in-home pet care company. The owner, Liz Clawson, started running dogs in Michigan four years ago, looking for an early morning running buddy for safety purposes. When she moved out to Breckenridge, CO, in 2007, she continued offering dog walking, running, and pet-sitting services. Due to the increasing demand for in-home pet care in Summit County, Liz established an LLC and hired contract workers to fill in when she was already booked.

Liz learned about the Small Business Development Center at Colorado Mountain College through one of her contract workers. Seeking to turn her little “side job” into a “professional and successful entrepreneurship,” she met with SBDC consultants for several free business counseling sessions. Their wealth of business knowledge was evident to her in their first meeting. They helped guide her through establishing an LLC, writing a business plan, and choosing a name for her company. The consultants gave her positive reinforcement for the things she was already doing and challenged her to think BIG about the potential for her company. Even though she graduated with a bachelor’s degree in marketing, she did not know the basic steps to establishing her own company. The SBDC helped her with the logistical side of starting her pet-sitting business. Her love for dogs and exercise make her…”Dog’s Next Best Friend!”

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