Content Marketing

Episode 191: Lessons Learned in Entrepreneurship This Year

December 19, 2023

Chasing Simple Marketing

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I'm  Amanda — simplicity-focused content marketing strategist.  I'm here to help you fit your marketing into your business.

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Today, I'm letting you peek behind the curtain at the 5 lessons that really stood out to me this year - some good and some not so fun ones.

Lessons Learned in Entrepreneurship This Year

One of the things I love most about being an entrepreneur is that you never stop learning. I’m a perpetual student – I love taking courses, attending conferences, listening to podcasts, and reading books. Gathering knowledge for improving my life and business fills me with joy, although sometimes you learn things the hard way and they aren’t so fun.

This year, there were 5 lessons that really stood out to me – some good and some not so fun ones. And today I’m letting you peek behind the curtain and sharing what it is I learned this year. And hey, maybe that means you won’t have to go through the hard lessons to learn the not so fun ones yourself!

Links and Resources Mentioned in This Episode:

  • Really quickly, before we dive into this episode – I just HAVE to share something I’m really excited about with you. My book, Chasing Simple Marketing, is launching this July. I wrote this book for the business owner that stumbled into entrepreneurship because they were following their passion. But without that Masters of Business Administration (MBA) or background in business, they find marketing overwhelming and frustrating. Throughout these pages, I’m going to take you on a simplicity-focused journey to improve your content marketing and you’ll walk away with an actionable plan to simplify your marketing, so that you can fit your marketing into your business, without it taking over your business. To learn more about how to grab your copy, and even potentially get on the launch team head over to amandawarfield.com/book/ See you there!
  • This week’s episode is brought to you by the Chasing Simple Content Planner and you can grab your own at amandawarfield.com/planner/
  • Content Batching Bootcamp
  • Chasing Simple Marketing: The Community
  • Work with Me
  • This week’s action step: Are any of these lessons familiar? DM me!
  • This week’s book recommendation: Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas
  • Find me on Instagram and tell me you completed this week’s action step: @mrsamandawarfield

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Don’t forget to subscribe so that you never miss an episode! Also, if you would be willing to leave a review on Apple Podcasts, it would mean the world to me. It’s such a small thing that can make a big difference in helping me spread this message of simplicity to other overwhelmed women.

Have a comment about today’s episode, or a topic you’d like to suggest for a future episode? Shoot me an email over at hello@amandawarfield.com!

Rather Read? – Here’s the Transcript!

*Just a heads up – the provided transcript is likely to not be 100% accurate

One of the things I love most about being an entrepreneur is that you never stop learning. I’m a perpetual student. I love taking courses, attending conferences, listening to podcasts, and reading books. Gathering knowledge for improving my life and business fills me with joy. Although, sometimes you learn things the hard way and they aren’t so fun.

This year, there were five lessons in particular that really stood out to me. Some good and some not so fun ones. And today, I’m letting you peek behind the curtain and sharing what it is that I learned this year. And hey, maybe that means you won’t have to go through the hard lessons to learn the not so fun ones yourself.

You’re listening to episode 191 of the Chasing Simple Podcast, and I’m your host, Amanda Warfield. This episode was brought to you by my book, Chasing Simple Marketing, and you can grab your own at amandawarfield. com. book.

How do I find time to create content without overwhelming myself? Where should I even be showing up in my marketing? How do I come up with fresh content ideas? Where should I be focusing my marketing efforts? What is lead generation anyways and how do I do it? Are launches still a thing? And most importantly, How do I put it all together to market my business strategically?

Can I really grow my business without spending all of my time marketing? These are some of the questions that float around in your head when you think of marketing. Welcome, friend. This is Chasing Simple, where practical marketing strategy meets simplicity. I’m your host, Amanda Warfield, simplicity focused content marketing and launch strategist, speaker, educator, and author of Chasing Simple Marketing.

I traded in my classroom lesson plans for helping creative entrepreneurs sustainably fit marketing into their business without it taking over their business, so that they have time to grow their business, take time off, and live the life they dreamed about when they first decided to go out on their own.

When I’m working, you can find me working with one on one clients, such as The Contract Shop and Rebecca Rice Photography on their marketing strategy and copywriting, or helping my students simplify their marketing and launches. And when I’m not, you can find me spending time outside with my husband, Russell.

Reading in our hammock, watching Gamecock Sports, traveling, or forcing our cats to snuggle me. If you feel overwhelmed by marketing, you aren’t alone. Many entrepreneurs find marketing frustrating, overwhelming, and simply an obligation. They know they need it, but they don’t enjoy how easily it can suck up their time when what they really want to be doing is the thing that they started their business to do.

Which is why I’m here, to help make marketing simple and less time consuming. So that you can spend less time on your marketing and more time growing your business and doing what you love each week. I’ll bring you transparent conversations, actionable steps, and judgment free community to encourage and equip you.

So grab yourself a cup of coffee or whatever your drink of choices and meet me here each week for love support, practical tips and advice on uncomplicating your marketing and business. Let’s do this entrepreneurship thing together. Shall we? Hey there friend. I’m popping in really quickly to ask for your help.

If you haven’t already, would you mind leaving a rating and review for the Chasing Simple podcast? You see, ratings and reviews are really important in the life of a podcast because it tells the podcast player that people are listening and enjoying the show, which means that this show is more likely to get Suggested to a wider audience.

Not only that, but honestly, I love to read the encouraging words from listeners, especially on those hard days of entrepreneurship. So if you felt encouraged by this show, or you’ve learned something that you’ve been able to implement to improve your business. I would love to hear about it. So please, go leave a rating and review if you haven’t already.

It would truly mean the world to me. The first lesson that I learned this year in entrepreneurship is that it is okay to change your mind and undo something that you’ve done. So, for a backstory, you might have heard this previously, but maybe you’ve only heard bits and pieces, or maybe you’ve never heard this.

But, Back in 2020, I launched my course, Content Batching Bootcamp, and it did incredibly well as a course. It’s truly what launched my business and is the foundation for my entire business. And without a doubt, it’s my best selling course ever. It just did so well. It honestly surprised me. Both myself and my husband with how well it did and then I ran it live three times and each time I Asked for feedback and put out a form and every single time.

I got the same feedback. Love the course so helpful I wish that it came with ongoing accountability Because it’s great to know how to set up a batch week that works for me But now I have to do it month after month and I thought you know what? That’s a great point I’m going to turn this into a membership Because I wanted to be able to give that ongoing accountability.

And so I did, I turned it into club content batching, which was a year long membership commitment. And the idea behind that was, okay, you’re going to commit to batching your content every single month for a year, and you’re going to be accountable to doing it together with us as a group over time, it became clear that.

While, in theory, that was something people wanted, it didn’t sell well, and I knew it wasn’t the course because the course had sold itself really, really well previously. And so, I sat with that for a long time. You know, 2021 was when I turned it from a course to a membership, and I sat with that feeling of, this isn’t right for, um, a year, year and a half.

I would say before I finally figured out what I wanted to do and there were a lot of feelings of Imposter syndrome and scarcity and just failure that I had associated with this because, you know, I really thought I was doing what my students wanted me to do and it didn’t work. It didn’t sell and there was this frustration of, man, this course sold so well and I thought I was doing the right thing by transitioning it.

to a membership and then no one wanted it. Maybe no one wants the course anymore. Maybe it’s not, you know, there’s all these thoughts that cycle through your head in these moments. And, um, it was really hard for me. Again, I sat with this for a year, year and a half. Trying to figure out what to do next and just not really being sure and it was really hard for me to decide to make that change and then to decide what to do with it and what I ultimately ended up doing was I Took the course material for content batching bootcamp and I turned it back into a course And then I got rid of the current membership that I had club content batching and I created an entirely new membership that was more aligned with my book and my business overall because The membership for Club Content Batching was really just focused on batching your content.

And I wanted a membership that was a bit more broad and that covered simplifying your marketing and your business as a whole, more aligned with this podcast and more aligned with my book, Chasing Simple Marketing. And so I created Chasing Simple Marketing, the membership. And so now instead of having a year long commitment that’s all about batching.

I have a membership that has a month to month commitment. You can cancel at any time, but also has quarterly themes where we deep dive into one specific area of improving your marketing. And so it’s still meant to help hold you accountable and to be really actionable and not overwhelm you with education, but it’s much more aligned with my business as a whole.

And so That was a really, really scary change to make because it was a big change and in a way it felt like going backwards. But immediately I started seeing sales of Content Batching Bootcamp, the course, again. And immediately I started seeing new members joining Chasing Simple Marketing, the community.

And so both turned out to be a success where together they were not. And if I had not pushed past those feelings of. If I have to undo something, I’m a failure. If I have to go back on what I’ve done, I don’t know what I’m doing as a business owner. If I have to undo what I’ve done, others will see me as a failure.

If I hadn’t pushed past those feelings… Which it took me longer than I wish it would have to do so, but if I hadn’t pushed past those, I would be feeling really unfulfilled in that area of my business. So that was a long story. I think that’s probably the longest of all of these different lessons that I learned.

But the first lesson that I learned this year is that it is okay to change your mind and undo something that you’ve already done. The second lesson that I learned this year is that things can change drastically over a year. So one of the things I do in my KPIs each month is at the very bottom I have a space for my biggest wins of the month and my biggest lessons learned of the month which If you are interested in having a kpi tracker template I do have one in my shop that you can check out and i’ll link to that in the show notes But that is something I do every month is first day of the month I do my kpis and I go through and I fill out that whole tracker And the very two last things in that tracker are what were my wins and what were my biggest lessons.

And I was looking back over that as I prepared for this episode. And it’s really funny because in February, I believe I had made a note in the biggest lessons of this is just going to be a slow year. And I just have to accept that that is what it’s going to be. And. And now I’m ending the year with, you know, exceeding records that I set for myself, exceeding goals that I set for myself.

And one in particular was I had a certain number of shop sales I wanted to hit by the end of the year on a monthly basis. I wanted to be hitting that. In February, I was like, I’m not gonna, it’s not going to happen. I’m not going to be hitting that number. And then all of a sudden I started hitting it and I’ve been hitting it consistently.

And I really started this year feeling like I wasn’t going to see much growth. But I’m ending the year feeling really good despite the fact that there is, you know, some economic issues happening right now. Feeling really good about where things are at. I’m not hitting all of my goals. I’m not hitting my big revenue goal for the year, but over the last eight months or so, I’ve really seen things change drastically and you know, sometimes it’s really easy to be in a moment and think well this year is just done.

I’ve just not hit my goals. It’s not what I want it to be and Looking back through my lessons learned this year was a great reminder that a year is a long time and things can change drastically, and that it’s okay to set big goals for yourself, even if you think they may not be reachable. The third lesson I learned this year is that crafting a strong offer takes longer than we think, and that they need to be reiterated over and over again.

This You know is a lesson that I sort of learned through that first lesson right of okay Well, I had content batching bootcamp and I turned it into club content batching now It’s back to content batching bootcamp. And so that was a great Lesson there, but I’ve also seen this happen with other offers that I’ve had man my content planner Got an incredible facelift this year and I’m amazed at how different it is and how much better the 2024 version is than the 2023 version and You know when I put it out last year and it sold so well I was like, I got a great offer here.

And now I’m like wait It’s so much better now than it was this is incredible And so it needs to be reiterated over and over even if you think your offer is great But on the other side of things i’ve seen offers take off a lot slower not because they weren’t a great offer, but just because I needed to Um, I don’t really dive further into the messaging, you know, maybe I had a really great idea, but it wasn’t honed in enough yet and it wasn’t clear yet and I put it out, but the audience needed more from me that I wasn’t quite giving them or, you know, there’s a lot of different reasons why an offer can’t quite hit the nail on the head just yet, but it’s not as simple as coming up with an offer.

And then, okay, your first launch is the end all be all. No, it, it really does take time to craft a strong offer, and a lot of times we want to put an offer out and have it immediately be successful, and that’s just not the case. And that is something that I’ve run into multiple times. This year, both with myself and with clients, actually, and it’s just a good reminder that it’s okay to reiterate things and it’s okay to take it slow and to really spend time diving into that offer as your people go through it and go alongside them and ask them, you know, what What could be made better about this?

I just got off a call with a Community member from Chasin’s of a marketing the community and I asked, you know, how are things going? Is there anything confusing and she said well, you know, I haven’t really gotten far into it and I get started And then I get distracted or whatever and I was like, well, you know, I intentionally created this material As audio trainings instead of video training so that you could take it on the go, have you been able to do that?

And she pointed out that with the way it’s set up in Cardstroke currently, that’s not actually feasible because when she closes that tab or closes her phone, all of a sudden it’s gone and it stops talking. And so that was a huge realization for me that, okay, well, I need to find a different way to set that up because that’s not going to work for the intended purpose.

And had I not gone alongside her and asked those questions, I never would have known that. So. Creating a strong offer does take longer than we think and that’s okay. The fourth lesson that I learned is that funnels really do make such a difference. A large part of the reason that my shop has taken off this year is yes, because people are more interested in DIY offers right now and lower ticket offers, but also because I’ve set up funnels that are leading people to different offers in my shop.

And We could, there’s a lot that we could talk about with funnels and I’m not going to go into a ton of teaching on them right now, but setting up funnel offers for people so that once they join your email list, they’re hearing about specific offers. Is huge because if they don’t hear about it, how are they going to know it’s there?

And so you have to set up those offers if you’re going to have an email list And listen if you’re just getting started and you’re like amanda, it’s enough to like send a newsletter Don’t worry about this right now, but start thinking about what could I send people to what could my funnels be about?

What could my funnels be because it really can make a huge difference And my final lesson in entrepreneurship that I learned this year is that my business is not more important than my health. At the beginning of the year, I shared on the podcast that I was really going to be focusing on myself, that I I wasn’t going to set goals this year.

I wasn’t going to have a goal planner. I mean, I set some business goals, but I wasn’t setting personal goals. I was really trying to take care of myself. And there have been a lot of lessons this year around my health, um, which I won’t go into a ton of detail about because you would sit here and listen to me talk about my health for a long time, but.

There were quite a few different points about this year where I really had to take steps back for my health For different reasons and I’m so glad that I gave myself the space to do that and in years past I’ve been so focused on growing my business that I’ve run myself into the ground and I’ve damaged my body in a lot of ways by not taking care of it and I’m very glad to say that that is a mindset that I’m changing and that has really changed this year for me, is that my health needs to come first and that everything else doesn’t really matter.

But it’s not always easy to live out either, and so it’s a constant reminder as well that, hey, this doesn’t matter more than my health. My health comes first. If I need a break, I need to take a break. If I need to disappoint some people in order to care for myself, that’s just what’s gonna have to happen.

So, alright, those are my, my big lessons that I learned this year, uh, I hope that you found this fun, maybe you can relate to some of these. If you can relate to any of these, if these, if any of these were also a lesson that you learned this year, send me a DM, I’d love to hear about it. And that’s your action step for this week actually, is to let me know, did you relate to any of these lessons that I learned this year?

And your book recommendation for this week is Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas. I love the series. The series I enjoyed so much that I actually convinced my husband to read it as well because it is less, I don’t really want to use the word girly because I don’t, I don’t think that’s a fair word, but it’s less, um, it’s more fantasy, less romantic than Akatar or, um, I guess Crescent City isn’t super romantic either, but it’s easier to read than Crescent City.

Um, if you have no idea what I’m talking about, these are all series by Sarah J Maas, which I’m sure you do. Because they’re everywhere right now. But the Throne of Glass series was incredible. I actually want to go back and reread it. I also want to reread Crescent City. And Agatar. They’re all so good. I just want to own all of them.

But, um, yeah. That is your book recommendation for this week is Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas. And… With that, I hope that you will go out and uncomplicate your marketing and business.

Thank you so much for joining me here today, friend. You can find this episode show notes as well as all the resources you need to simplify your marketing over@amandawarfield.com. If you liked what you heard here today, be sure to subscribe to the podcast so that you’ve never missed an episode. And if you could take a moment to leave a rating and review, it would truly mean the world to me.

Ratings and reviews are the number one way that you can support a podcast and ensure that it sticks around for many more episodes to come. I’ll see you next time, now go out and uncomplicate your marketing and business.

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