3 ways I’m failing right now

There’s this weird thing that happens with online businesses. We look at someone’s instagram feed and we think to ourselves “dang… they’ve got it all together!” And thus starts the dreaded comparison game.

In an effort for full transparency, I thought I’d tell you three ways I’m failing right now. Gulp... here we go!

  1. I rarely post on Instagram
  2. I don’t have a niche for my services
  3. My blog is inconsistent at best

As embarrassing as this is, there’s a reason I’ve neglected these things. They don’t matter for the success of my business.

Instead, I’ve focused on 3 strategies that I can continuously trace back to successfully booking clients. These are the same 3 strategies that I teach each of my Share-worthy Design students who’ve seen great success! Whether you are working full-time as a designer, and itching to break free on your own, or have your own design studio but are hoping to streamline your efforts to booking clients, I’ve got you covered.

I may not have the largest instagram following, a popular podcast or niche I’m known for. But what I do have is consistent income from clients that allows me to stay at home with my son (and baby #2 on the way!) while far exceeding any corporate job I’ve had from the first year.

Just proof that you don’t have to have all of the things you see other businesses succeed at (like a daily curated Instagram post) to succeed on your own.

Over the next couple weeks we’ll dive into the top 3 things I believe you should focus on for your business:

  • Consistent marketing
  • Red-carpet client experience
  • Streamlined client process

To kick things off today, let’s breakdown what it means to have a consistent marketing plan.

CONSISTENCY IS KEY

We’ve all heard this phrase — whether trying to lose weight, improve your mile time or forming new daily routines. But we often forget it when it comes to marketing. Particularly if you’re new to the business world it can be overwhelming on where to focus your marketing. So instead of consistency, we often go the other way and test different strategies hoping to see what sticks. While I’m all for testing (and have done it myself!), the only way to accurately see results is to stick with it for a while. This can be especially tough when results aren’t showing up immediately.

When I first started Spruce Rd. over 3 years ago, I knew that consistency was the way to success. Though I honestly didn’t see great results within the first couple months (which was disheartening), I stayed true to my marketing plan to blog a few days a week consistently. It paid off and my first clients found me by way of my blog. To say I was ecstatic when booking my first client, who mentioned my blog as how she discovered me, is an understatement. Proof that though the results don’t often reveal themselves immediately, your diligence will pay off as you attract clients down the road.

HOW YOU SHOULD MARKET YOUR BUSINESS

While there isn’t a one-size-fits-all marketing strategy that works for each business, I do have a few tried and true marketing strategies that work well for freelance designers. With any marketing effort you test, it is essential that it leans on your giftings. For instance — if you are naturally vivacious and thrive in social settings (ahem… this isn’t me!), than prioritizing in-person marketing or live online events would be a natural fit. While if you’re thinking that sounds terrible and something you would dread, maybe focusing your efforts on another marketing strategy would be better suited.

To help you hone in on the marketing tactics that align best with your strengths, I’ve created a fun quiz for you!

SIMPLICITY FOR THE WIN

A couple weeks ago I attended the ConvertKit conference (which was amazing), and I keep coming back to one thing Pat Flynn said during his talk. “But… what if it were really simple?”

We have a tendency to over-complicate things. Thinking we need to post on Instagram daily, that it needs to look a certain way, we should have a podcast, offer 10 different service packages, etc. If we shoot for simplicity not only do we gain clarity in the process, but we can be more effective with our strategies. Imagine if you let go of having to do #allthethings to propel your business, and instead made it really, really simple.

So, in an effort to embrace simplicity your quick homework is to select one marketing strategy to implement for the next 30 days. Seriously… jot it down now :).

Next week we’re talking all about creating a red carpet client experience, along with specific examples I’ve experienced from other businesses, that you can swipe for your own process. Excited for this one!

LIVE FREELANCE WORKSHOP WEEK!

Y’all! I’m so excited to announce my upcoming free 5-day live Designer #FreelanceWeek workshop series! Are you pumped? For 5 days straight I’m finally sharing all the details of running a full-time design studio — from booking clients, to my exact client process. It’s going to be a jam packed week. Sign up, and I can’t wait to see you there!