One decade down; forever to go.
10 years ago, CatalystCreativ started, and I’m SO excited to launch this new chapter with all of you, we couldn’t do it without you. Before we move forward, let’s take a look back.
Where we came from
In 2012, my business partners Tony Hsieh and Robert Fowler and I decided to build a business that was all about building a community of active participants in shaping the world and creating an ROI (Ripple of Impact).
CatalystCreativ intended to use my thesis on the Seven Levels of Engagement from my MA in Curriculum and Instruction combined with our mutual love for bringing people together and Tony’s passion for customer engagement and creating experiences that build community to downtown Vegas.
Starting in 2012, We hosted events called Catalyst Weeks and Creativ Weeks to catalyze Downtown Vegas. We brought 2000 Thought Leaders, Entrepreneurs, Dancers, Musicians to Downtown Vegas over 2.5 years (50 people twice a month) to give talks and workshops for free and learn about what was happening with Tony’s vision for Downtown.
We always felt education was bigger than the classroom and that brands and Thought Leaders were the best Teachers, they just needed the right curriculum. As more and more people came to our events, they wanted us to host experiences/marketing campaigns/digital experiences for them to engage their customers more deeply.
Tony always believed in creating more collisions through serendipity. Our throughline for everything we have done is creating experiences where people can connect more meaningfully with each other in the world. We have even had people meet at our Catalyst Week experiences and then get married and have babies (true story!)
Those 2000 guests snowballed into hundreds of clients over the years, where we used my Seven Levels of Engagement Framework to help businesses engage their customers. We then launched a book all about this called The Seventh Level, where we realized that teaching people how to fish was a lot more exciting than selling fish over the years!
That book helped thousands and thousands of people including Alysa Duval who reached out to me 4 years ago on Linkedin after learning about the Seven Levels through a partnership we formed with HubSpot. As I have always also believed in the power of serendipity, I immediately responded. Alysa ended up reading the book, going through a training program about the Seven Levels of Engagement and we even got to meet in person during a talk I was giving at INBOUND. She utilized the framework throughout her entire career and has always been at the Seventh Level as a customer.
When thinking about the next 10 years, we thought about how we can reach more people and teach them how to build a community for their own experiences, whether in the metaverse or real life.
We went back to our roots of thinking about how we can tap into our community of experts, thought-leaders, and teachers, the 2000+ of you that have inspired millions by starting businesses like Warby Parker, Away, SweetGreen, speakers like Quddus Philippe, Julie Wenah, Vincent Bourzeix, to name a few. We wanted to give you the stage again to share your voice and create a community of teachers and learners.
And so CatalystU was born.
Where we are
We are so proud to launch CatalystU with more than 8 courses and several free resources focused around engagement. Our certification program focuses on the Seven Levels of Engagement and how to apply that knowledge when communicating with your customers (email or social channels). CatalystU helps you think holistically about your business goals while teaching you new ways to reach your audience or an entirely new audience while building a community of brand ambassadors.
In keeping with our roots, we have a Deep Dive Series that brings you Thought Leaders from various industries and expertise to teach you everything you need to know to maintain that community and deepen your relationships with your customers.
And the best part is Alysa is now spearheading all of these efforts. She most recently has been hired as Head of CatalystU. With her deep knowledge of marketing and community building from companies like Bose, Accenture, Workers Credit Union, SmartBear, she is proof that understanding the way we define engagement is the secret sauce to success in today’s complicated digital landscape.
I have met a lot of people in my life but cannot say enough about the excitement and energy Alysa has brought to the table in shaping this next decade with CatalystU. You can read about her journey with the Seven Levels here.
We wouldn’t be here without you and we would love to formally introduce you to Alysa, hear what you are up to and how you can become a part of the CatalystU(niverse). Please book a time with her here.