5 of The Most Game-Changing Things I Did For My Business This Year
Dudes, the end is near. 2016 is comin’ in hot.
You know how it is with December. One minute it's August and you're all 'Oh cool, still got a few months of the year left', then next thing you know, December is all up in your face like 'Hey bitch, look who it is! I'm back!'. Pretty standard, right?
So inevitably, along with the holiday vibes this time of year brings, it's a given that you should take a look back on the last 12 months or so and see how you've done in your biz.
For me personally — I’ve made some decent changes in my biz this year so I thought I’d share some, and what I learned from them.
I wanna know what changes you've made this year and how they've worked for you too — so comment below and let me know!
1 :: I put my big girl biz pants on. (Aka I got a biz bank account and hired a bookkeeper/badass accountant)
This one almost feels kind of embarrassing to admit. When left my full time job to work for myself — almost 4 years ago now — I was living in Sydney, Australia. I ended up moving back to NZ about 6 months after that, but I was still using all of my Australian bank accounts until earlier this year (even though I wasn’t living there and had no plans to ever move back).
They weren’t even proper biz bank accounts — so although I was really good at tracking my receipts and expenses, my actual bank accounts were a total shit show.
So I committed to sorting it all out, with help of Shaun at Change Accounting*. He helped me go legit, so now I’ve got proper biz bank accounts, and my biz is fully registered in NZ (as opposed to just being a sole trader, as I was before).
The guys at Change also do all of my monthly bookkeeping and accounting, which is kind of amazing.
They do what they're good at, so I can do what I'm good at.
*Change isn't paying me to say this and the above link isn't an affiliate link — I just think they're awesome.
The lesson? Hire people in their zone of genius, so you can stay in yours.
2 :: Launched fast and small.
When I launched my Be Unmistakable course back in May, I was scared as hell. I knew that moving forward I wanted my biz to be heavily based on digital products, but I didn’t know what to expect. I decided to launch fast and small, and it was one of the best things I've ever done in my biz.
Launching fast meant I didn't spend loads of time and money on something I wasn't sure was going to work. I also held myself accountable by telling people about what I was making before I even had the vision 100% nailed down, and before I even started working on the content.
It sounds crazy — but it worked.
The lesson? Launch fast. Get your work out into the world. Figure it out as you go.
3 :: Took a trip to Australia to hang out with some fellow #girlbosses.
Back in September I took a trip across the ditch to spend a few days in Byron with some of the coolest creative ladies I know. We rented house and just hung out and talked all things biz + life for a few days. It was awesome.
When you’re a soloprenuer and you spent most of your days working from home, you almost forget how good it is to hang out with fellow boss pals in real life.
The lesson? Get out and hang with your peeps IN REAL LIFE.
4 :: Launched The Stash and committed to my content marketing game.
With this move from a service based business more into digital products, I knew that expanding my tribe and creating more unique, valuable content needed to be a big part of my game plan.
When you’re selling digital products — your mailing list is a really big deal. You don’t need a big list, but you do need a list of devoted people that just ‘get’ you and want to hear what you have to say.
So part of that plan was creating a new opt-in strategy to welcome more people to my tribe. This lead me to creating The Stash — a library of resources for entrepreneurs. Since launching The Stash in September my list has grown about 35%, and my average open rate continues to hover around 50%, which I’m so stoked on.
In the past I’ve been very against opt-in bribes (this is where you use free content to get people on your mailing list), because they always came across kinda sleazy, and they can very easily backfire when they’re not done right. But as I’ve learned from some fellow entrepreneurs, you gotta do what you gotta do to get people in the door. And if they don’t like your vibe? They’re gonna leave anyway. No big deal.
Since launching The Stash, I also committed to a regular posting schedule. I’ve been sending at least one email to my tribe per week — sometimes two. I have no doubt that this regular schedule has helped grow my audience too, as challenging as it might have been making that change from posting very little, to posting multiple times a month.
The lesson? Sometimes you gotta play the game. Just figure out how to make it work for you.
5 :: I wrote about the fuck ups.
The two articles I wrote this year that had the most feedback and engagement included talking about quitting, making mistakes, and fear. (Check them out below)
They weren’t ‘how to’ posts. They weren’t dishing out biz advice. They were just me, telling it how it is. Writing these posts wasn’t any kind of business strategy or anything like that — I just felt the need to write about some of this stuff that we never really talk about.
I got so many emails and comments about those posts from people who felt the same way, but hadn’t really talked about it or faced it yet. And that right there? That’s why authenticity and vulnerability matters. When you get real with yourself and publish the stuff that scares you, we can all feel a little less alone knowing that we’re going through the same shit.
The lesson? Just tell it how it is. It won’t be easy but it will be worth it.
*The dudes at Change Accounting didn't pay me to say any of that nice stuff about 'em and the above link isn't an affiliate link — I just think they're awesome.
But guess what? Cause they're so rad, they're offering to give you 2 months free bookkeeping, if you chat to them and mention the phrase 'I wanna be fresh like Sian'. Sweet deal, right? Check them out over here!