When the team at SmartBiz Loans worked with Angela Fulcher to help her marketing firm acquire an SBA loan, they discovered that their goals aligned – helping small businesses across the U.S. grow and thrive.
Here’s how Fulcher is working with other entrepreneurs and her plans to expand her own business with funds from a low-cost SBA loan.
About Angela Fulcher
Fulcher graduated from the McCombs School of Business at the University of Texas with a degree in finance and worked for the Walt Disney Company after graduation.
“I cut my branding teeth early because I learned from the best,” she said. “I describe myself as a branding geek.”
She worked for the Disney entertainment division in Florida until she met her “extremely entrepreneurial” husband. He knew that her vast experience would translate well into their own venture.
“My husband and I ended up working together for over 20 running an agency in Florida with clients up and down the East Coast. It was great – we helped a variety of large brands including the Atlantis Resort, Lucent Technologies and Harley-Davidson.”
The couple’s specialty was spearheading large events like a live broadcast of the US Olympic festival attended by 60,000 people. Although she loved those events, Fulcher saw a need within the corporate world.
“We pivoted from events into marketing communications work after discovering that companies really needed help with clear and compelling messaging.”
Her agency continued working with big brands until 2 years ago.
“I have two children and am about to become an empty nester. When that happens, you take a close look at what you do. I realized that running an agency wasn’t fueling my passion.”
Fulcher knew smaller companies that couldn’t afford to go the agency route could benefit from her knowledge with big brands.
Launching The Growth CMO
Fulcher and her husband launched The Growth CMO that operates out of Boulder, Colorado. The business has three full time employees and works with a myriad of outside contractors.
“I’ve developed strong relationships and resources over the years to build a customized team for our clients,” said Fulcher. “I know who to call for assistance in many specific verticals.”
The Growth CMO offers marketing for mid-sized businesses providing clients with strategy and a services including branding, creative development, digital campaigns, event production and PR. The targeted programs are designed to grow leads and prospects, spark revenue, increase sales and drive brand awareness.
Fulcher describes a unique feature offered by The Growth CMO.
“We have a marketing platform designed specifically for the small to medium sized business owner. We work with them on a one-on-one basis creating strategy and helping them fulfill it. It’s very rewarding.”
Fulcher is in a unique position to recognize the challenges of running a business.
“A lot of it is knowing what not to do,” she said. “People get the squirrel disease, chasing the newest and shiniest marketing tool. I help them understand what to avoid spending resources on. It has to be the right fit for that individual business.”
Boots on the Ground
Fulcher’s own marketing for The Growth CMO to date has been “boots on the ground” word-of-mouth and networking.
“We knew we needed to spend a little more on our own marketing and advertising to reach smaller businesses. That’s when SmartBiz came into the equation.”
Fulcher and her husband last got a bank loan 20 years ago.
“My husband is our financial and operations guru. He had never really thought about an SBA loan before but did some research and decided to go for it.”
“My husband is a real task master,” she said. “He’s tough in a fair way with high expectations and wants things done yesterday. Working with Issac was great.”
She and her husband plan to use the SBA loan funds, with low rates and a 10-year term, to attract more small business owners in need of marketing help.
The first order of business for The Growth CMO was to launch a targeted digital campaign in and around Denver and smaller Colorado areas. Next, they plan to reach out on a national level.
“In order to take our platform to market we needed a boost that we’re getting from the additional funds,” she said.
In addition to promoting their services, The Growth CMO plans to add staff, invest in video conferencing equipment and reach out to the non-profit sector.
“The reason we secured an SBA loan is to help small businesses understand what we can provide and how we can help them grow,” she said. “It’s my passion.”