Success Story: Mountain BizWorks Coach and Long Time Client Cara Steinbuchel Expands Product Line

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Cara’s entrepreneurial journey started in 2004 while working as the Co-Manager of Mud Hunter Pottery Gallery. The owner asked Cara if she could make a version of her favorite recently discontinued lotion. Cara had never done any product development before but, she said sure. After playing around in the lab and coming up with her new hand cream, Cara Mae Skin Care was born. From the start, Cara has focused on making hand cream for potters and now, close to 25 years later, she is expanding the line to include a head-to-toe body lotion. Join Cara and get the exclusive first try of Potters’ Skin Butter Body Lotion at The Vintage Hendo Boho Christmas Show on Sunday November 26 from 4-7pm.

So how did Cara go from being an artist to an Entrepreneur? A couple years after starting to sell her hand lotion on the side, Cara took on being an entrepreneur full time. She started off by taking the Foundations Business Planning course which let her formalize her business plan and streamline her manufacturing process. Ten years later, Cara is still close with some of her cohort. Following the Foundations Business Planning course Cara continued going to several BizWorks classes, including, Alpine, most recently, Quickbooks, and others, and working with a one-on-one business coach around product pricing. Cara hoped from the beginning to one day be a part of the business coaching team, to which she now belongs. In addition to spending time in the Mountain BizWorks offices which she referred to as “a home for businesses where there is never-ending, contagious excitement for supporting local small businesses,” Cara has joined a group of three other local entrepreneurs, Amy Pickett with Sugar and Snow Gelato, Jill Buryinski of Living Sabai Massage Training, and Bethany Malley of Bethany Malley Massage, to form a “Mastermind” collective which works to keep the members accountable to their business goals.

With her team in place, a better understanding of business development, and several customer requests for a larger product line, Cara was ready to expand her business. She started to plot out what should be her next product to launch for Cara Mae Skin Care. She started testing several other products to see what would be the best next step for Cara Mae Skin Care and it became clear that creating a head-to-toe lotion felt most natural to move forward with. Cara admitted that she was “afraid to do so” and that her fiancé, Michelle Rodgers, in addition to her business motivated and helped her bring this product to market.

Throughout Cara’s years of being a business owner she recognized that Cara Mae Skin Care’s success was attributed to several things: keeping her brand positive; staying focused on her initial niche market of potters and artists; sharing community with individuals who push her forward; finding places where she could gain inspiration and needed tools; and, making a great product.  

Learn more about the event and Cara Mae Skin Care here.

Learn more about Mountain BizWorks Foundation Course here and the Alpine course here.


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