This morning I was at a Missouri Venture Forum meeting and heard a very encouraging speaker discussing the entrepreneurial outlook in St. Louis. The speaker was Judy Sindecuse, CEO of Capital Innovators.
At the meeting, two things stuck with me. First, someone asked me how I stay current on PR trends in St. Louis. I mentioned that we go to conferences, presentations and we receive half a dozen newsletters every week. I also mentioned that we work with clients from all over, but the core base of our clients is in St. Louis.
Then I explained that when social media hit the marketing world, prior to the media discussing Twitter and Facebook every day, we had to get a strategy together to help our clients figure out what they should be doing. For some clients it didn’t make sense. For others, it made lots of sense. Most agencies have changed how they approach social media and clients have as well. The key is what is going to drive the most engagement from the target audience. That varies with each client.
The outlook for startup technology companies is looking quite strong in St. Louis. The groups are not sitting around waiting for someone to come up with answers, but folks like Capital Innovators are pulling funds together and funding micro businesses. Today in St. Louis you can get $50k in funding with little or no investment from the start up itself. Plus you have access to many resources for free OR at little to no cost. On top of that they are developing funds to help you go from startup to the next stage of development. This outlook is very exciting and is putting St. Louis on stage as a technology startup hotbed.
So if you’re starting up a business and have something that has a solid foundation behind it, Capital Innovators would be a great place to look for funding. But there are many other resources. St. Louis is very focused on creating the next Fortune 500, not luring away a Fortune 500 from another state. The leadership should be applauded for having such a forward thinking approach on this.
So far the new Capital Innovator fund has created 120 new jobs in St. Louis.
So the thought process behind this post is: do not believe what you had heard in the past. If you want to stay current in your field, it takes, time energy and adjustments along the way. Don’t be afraid to make a few mistakes.