Seabright Crafts focuses on reaching mainly small businesses in the Santa Cruz community to offer unique team-building experiences to employees, by doing something creative and stress-relieving. A full-time teacher at Cabrillo College, Stephanie Michelet came to the SBDC to achieve her dream of turning her passion project into a profitable business.
Stephanie Michelet discovered her love for teaching crafts after participating in a workshop in Boston, which served as a catalyst for her entrepreneurial ambitions. Although at first local stores in Santa Cruz were very receptive to her offer of teaching workshops, the pandemic forced her to pause her business. However, no sooner had things started to get back to normal than Stephanie was eager to relaunch her business.
Due to Stephanie’s lack of business experience, mentorship was crucial to focus on the bigger picture and to design a strategic approach, especially around cost analysis. In order to accomplish this, Stephanie started her journey by participating in our Clicks2Bricks program (C2B), aimed at assisting entrepreneurs in developing a modern e-commerce website and a successful business strategy. Throughout the sessions, our advisors touched on relevant topics, while also providing substantial hands-on help with building Seabright Crafts’ website. This process involved switching to Shopify, which proved more functional and easier to navigate, and focusing on making Stephanie’s website more visible. For the purpose of driving more traffic to her site, our advisor Bill Ross encouraged our client to be conscientious of her choice of words and to avoid vagueness, in order to attract her target audience with key terms and search words. Participating in a cohort like that of the C2B also offered Stephanie the opportunity to learn from other inspiring entrepreneurs and to get fresh and innovative ideas to incorporate into her business.
Upon Stephanie’s completion of the C2B Program, she became eligible for the Dream Fund Grant. Our advisor Keith Holtaway’s guidance was key to helping Stephanie complete a detailed business plan and navigate the application process, by reviewing her budget planning and projections. Doing so, provided Stephanie with confidence and assertiveness about her application and business.
Thanks to the combined effort of Stephanie and the SBDC team, she received the Dream Fund Grant. This represents a unique opportunity for Seabright Crafts to grow since Stephanie can now purchase more high-quality kits that would allow her to teach more workshops and be prepared at all times. Stephanie expects to continue to develop her business to guarantee consistency and a steady clientele. In doing so, she is certain her creative outlet will grow into an even more successful brand that can bring joy and promote connectivity.