Barb Matteri, helping women over 50 know that they are powerhouses.My friend and colleague, Barbara Matteri, approached me a while ago, very excited. “I have a blog now. You should read it.” “Great,” I said, “What are you wanting to accomplish with it?” She didn’t have a clear answer to that question, but promised to think about it. My next questions were: “Where are you promoting it? Have you connected it to your facebook account, and how about in LinkedIn? Do you have a website that can act as a hub for your goals?” “Oh, I haven’t done any of those things,” she replied. Sigh. Since my focus for people using Social Media is on those over 50, I decided right there and then that she would be my case study. I suggested that, and she enthusiastically agreed. So, the next few blogs will follow Barb as she begins to learn how to get her message out to the world via the internet. But first, let me introduce you to her:

More About Barb:

Barb is like a B&B—Benedictine and Brandy–or perhaps a fine medium-dry sherry—or perhaps even a Kriek beer. Barb introduced me to Kriek, and it has the same depth of flavor as a fine aged wine, with its underlying note of dark fermented cherries. It also carries with it a sense of age and wisdom and hidden depths, and maybe just a touch of whimsy. Barb is like that.

Barb is a massage practitioner, like myself, working at Alderbrook Spa, which is also where I work part-time. She is also a shamanic practitioner and an artist. And she is a self-proclaimed crone, on the other side of the Great Divide of menopause. The picture I include here was taken by me, with the help of some indefinable magic. Something of her sense of humor and her shamanic crone nature definitely shines through the image.

Down to Business:

Barb’s Mission: “I love to help women over 50 realize that they are powerhouses.”

Our first step was to define what she wants to accomplish, what she has to offer, and who her ideal client is. So I visited her at her house. Her artistry shines from every corner of her house, nestled deep in the woods of Washington State, starting with the large sun/moon/goddess mural that greets you as you open the front door. There are touches of gilding everywhere, including on the walls. She has chosen to live close to Hood Canal—as magical a place as you’ll find on this planet. When we eventually design her website and her ravengate Welcome page, they must reflect that sense of style.

We talked well into the night about the Great Transition (menopause), and how that change in hormonal balance can trigger a larger, more spiritual transition, often unleashing an upswelling of creativity, artistry and a desire to leave a lasting legacy. Barb is one of those people who insists on living an examined life. In typical form, when she went through menopause, she devoured everything written about this powerful time. She took the experiences of others to heart, and she navigated her way to a new definition of herself and her personal power. Now she is ready to help others make that same journey, which is the journey toward your authentic self. We threw around ideas for her mission statement, and finally settled on this:

I love to help women over 50 realize that they are powerhouses.

The activities that she will be promoting as part of her business will include workshops such as this one which she’ll be doing at Alderbrook Spa, and one-to-one coaching sessions. She will also weave her bodywork into the mix, because for many women, the process of awakening to their power includes reconnecting with their bodies and developing a new sense of ease in their own skin. Massage can be a powerful ally in this process.

We decided to start with building a facebook fan page for her, called Ravengate (and by the way, she needs people to like her page so she can claim her ravengate url). We will be using her profile and her fan page to promote her blog. Her blog is more of a collection of poetry and musings about her life as a crone. Personally, I think she should leave it that way, and focus on promoting her business endeavors through her fan page. So, we’ll eventually embed her fan page into her blog and her blog into her ravengate page.

Sing me now asleep; Then to your offices and let me rest.

By the time we defined her mission statement, figured out who her ideal client is, took the picture, set up her facebook account, and her Ravengate page, and then finished the Kriek and some tea, it was well into the wee hours of the morning, and we were both exhausted but excited. I know my creative juices were flowing. I slept that night in the guest bedroom, which reminded me of Titania’s bower from Midsummer Night’s Dream, with its golden gauzy curtains and golden rhinestone-encrusted bedspread and gilded sienna walls. This is the kind of effect that is hard to pull off without seeming silly. Barb has that deft touch. I truly felt like a fairy queen, and the glow-in-the-dark stars on the ceiling made me giggle, but they also soothed me into a deep and restful sleep. Barb has that effect on people.