How to identify your target audience, market, and/or customer,
How to build a brand and audience from scratch,
And how to avoid becoming overwhelmed in the process.
Executive Director, StartWheel
Co-owner, Cure Coffeehouse & Cureo Coffee Liqueur
Marketing yourself, your company, or anything else for that matter requires both strategic and tactical thinking. Knowing how to build a website or use social media platforms is great, but that’s certainly not the whole story. To be effective, you really have to take a step back and think about how marketing fits within your broader business model. Understanding your value propositions an customer segments is critical to successful marketing campaigns.
Marketers Anonymous has invited Chris Shelton to share some of his marketing wisdom and experiences—the good, the bad, and the ugly. He’s the executive director of StartWheel, a regional non-profit committed to bringing entrepreneurs, resources, and capital providers together to develop a more connected entrepreneurial ecosystem in Hampton Roads. A business owner himself (Cure Coffeehouse and Cureo Coffee Liqueur), Chris has a passion for helping other entrepreneurs find success. Prior to his role with StartWheel, Chris was managing director of the ODU Innovation Center, where he provided startup consulting services to scalable, high-growth, innovation-driven ventures based on lean startup best practices.
Chelsea, a U.S. Navy veteran, is the founder and Chief Executive Officer of Troopster, a military care package charity that helps communities, friends and families send personalized quality deployment packages to the 1.3M service members around the world.
In 2011, after receiving her Bachelor of Science degree from Ball State University, Chelsea joined the United States Navy as a Photojournalist, where she traveled the world to provide media support and witnessed the accomplishments, capabilities, and needs of the Armed Forces.
It was during her experiences with the military, serving across 13 countries and nine naval platforms, that she was inspired to establish Troopster.
Her impacts include:
• Affiliate and Sponsor Partnerships with: Microsoft, Jersey Mike’s Subs, Chris Gronkowski - Gronk Ice
Shaker Bottle, Tijuana Flats, Chick Fil-A, Jody’s Popcorn, iFly Virginia, ONE Nation Coffee
• Supported more than 6,000 deployed U.S. soldiers with Troopster kits
• 400 + Volunteers who participate and work with Troopster to support those deployed
Chelsea has been recognized for multiple achievement awards, including the Small Business Administration (SBA) Person of the Year (2018), Microsoft Empower Possibility Winner in which Microsoft donated $10K in equipment and a $10K grant toward Troopster’s efforts, Inside Business Entrepreneurial Excellence Award, Coastal Virginia Giving Back Award and Coastal Virginia Business Innovator of the Year. Also, Troopster has been given multiple five-star accolades by users and recipients as an "Amazing" service that supports all aspects of the military and their families.