Twin Cities Mom Boss: City Mom Collective is Empowering Women across the Country

Blogs are everywhere. You are reading one right now. In 2010, two friends, Steph Flies & Joy Cherrick, started Scottsdale Moms Blog out of a desire to connect moms in their community. They saw a need for moms to be able to share local information, recommendations, and build friendships all from the convenience of their mobile devices. The next year, women all over the country began approaching them to do the same thing in their cities. City Mom Collective was formed and has since been launching "Sister Sites" everywhere to connect moms in their community, both online and offline. 

We recently got to talk to Steph Flies (Founder & Director) of City Mom Collective about how this all started and and the joys and challenges of running your own business.

Steph Flies Minnesota Woman Business Owner

SF: The heart of what I do is to build local communities and to empower entrepreneurs to build local communities, that's what drew me to Flagship Bank. We have similar missions. They are available to help in any way.

How did you come up with this business idea?

SF: It started because of curiosity, we were interested in how a blog could build a community and a business. 
My former business partner, Joy, (who has since moved on to homeschooling her 6 kids in Tennessee) was passionate about the content and I was the "gather-er" who couldn’t wait to plan events, get moms together, and manage the sales component. We started first with focus on building resources to help our customers and the business grew from there.   
 

Tell us about your Just Add Sprinkles Podcast. 

SF: Just Add Sprinkles (with co-host Michele, a PR consultant and long time friend located in Phoenix) celebrates motherhood with speakers who are moms with an entrepreneurial business background. I originally started the podcast alone with written scripts, but found it easier to have a natural conversation with a friend. 

City Mom Collective Minnesota Small Business

What are your favorite parts of your business?

SF: With depression at it’s highest, people aren’t connecting as much face to face, the platform is finding time for people to get together and gather, and form a space for others. I absolutely love to gather people, love people around dinner table (close family, friends, neighborhood). We create spaces in communities to connect in a world of social media.

What are some of the more challenging parts?

SF: Entrepreneurship is a moving target, business so dependent on social media these days. Platforms are changing all the time, depending on those as a business is crucial but it is also a challenge. There is not a super clear road map on how to build a business for moms across the country. I would love to say I know everything, but that’s not true. I'm constantly throwing things at the wall and seeing if it sticks. One day something is working, the next it might not be.

Let's talk about you. What brought you to Minnesota?

SF: My husband is a Minnesotan, from Wayzata. We met at Iowa State (where my family is from) went to college, moved to Arizona, came back for our kids to grow up around their family. I miss the Arizona sunshine, but will take what I can get here!

Can you tell me about your family?

SF: My dad is entrepreneur, which helped me feel more confident to take on different risks. I have a younger brother. Currently, I live in Plymouth with my husband and three girls ( aged 10, 8 and 6). I started when I had a six month old which wasn't easy, but I was incredibly career driven. I wanted a flexible career so I could be with my children.

What are your plans for the future?

SF: We recently went through a rebrand in August 2019. We were formerly City Blog Network (30 of 95 sites rebranded website/brand/logos). We are excited to finish the rest of the sites rebranding and very focused on getting this rebrand done.

Last question, how did you find Flagship Bank?

SF: The heart of what I do is to build local communities and to empower entrepreneurs to build local communities, that's what drew me to Flagship Bank. We have similar missions. They are available to help in any way.


City Mom Minnesota

 

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