Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Kimberly Darlington, Founder of Refined Substance Inc., located in Montreal West, QC, Canada.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

The mining industry has a language of its own, with terminology and technical details that can be unfamiliar to important stakeholders and audiences, such as the media, the investment community, the public, senior executives, and employees. Today's industry is fast-paced and global in scope, and clear, effective communications are more important than ever.

The team at Refined Substance takes the substance of what its clients want to share and refines it so that it can hit home with its intended audiences, be they investors, local communities, employees, media, or the public at large. We offer investor relations services, communications, marketing, and public relations specifically for companies in the mining industry in English and French.

Tell us about yourself

Having worked in communications and PR for most of my career, about 10 years ago, I had the opportunity to work on a project for a mining company and loved it. They loved my work, and soon the idea for Refined Substance was born. I am motivated by the need to tell the stories of how and why we mine in North America so that the public, especially young people, can understand the value of mining and the need for the minerals that power their smartphones, computers, and electric vehicles. They need to understand that the green energy revolution can only come about by mining those minerals and that mining, at least in North America, is done to the strictest environmental standards. It's not the same industry it was 50 years ago.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

Securing enough business to be able to hire full-time employees.

What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?

Delegating work to employees and managing their workflows.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. Take the time to complete a thorough business plan and have revenue goals.
  2. Get out there and network as much as possible.
  3. You have to spend money to make money - be prepared to lose money in the short term in the beginning.

Where can people find you and your business?


If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

Turn your craft into recurring revenue with Subkit. Start your subscription offering in minutes and supercharge it with growth levers. Get early access here.