We've been talking about how to build a resilient, profitable creative business in 2021. Whether you're a freelancer, artist, musician, small business owner, entrepreneur, or the like, a) you're my kind of people, and b) this framework will work for you if your goal is to have your business better support the creative work you want to do this year.
Here's the framework again:
- Start with your mindset. Success in business comes down to the mindset and skills of the business owner (that's you), and it's 80% mindset.
- Understand the wants and needs of your customer or client, your business, and yourself to get the lifestyle you desire.
- Create, test, and validate breakthrough ideas using a simple framework before you spend a ton of time an money building or creating something no one actually wants or needs.
- Focus on awareness and traffic to ensure that you have enough people who know and engage with you to get the amount of sales that you need to meet the wants and needs of you and your business.
- Optimize and Grow the business in a profitable way, making it more and more resilient so that it can support your creative work over your lifetime.
Now, there's a lot more detail to that framework, but this week we've been covering the 30,000' view of the process so that you have something to start the new year out with.
These steps alone, along with what we've discussed in these emails, is enough to get you started and off on the right foot. With just the basics of these steps I was able to 4x my business between 2017-2019, and am currently building two resilient businesses using this framework as I head into 2021.
You might decide to scale your business to $100k per year, or $500k, or seven figures. There's no "right" answer there, and it comes down to your mindset and wants and needs.
But that's what today's email is about - optimization and growth.
There are two questions to look for at this stage:
- What are you optimizing for?
- How big do you want to grow?
Let's take them in order.
First, what are you optimizing for? Meaning, what is it that will really make you happy and fulfilled in your work? Being able to do it in as few hours as possible each week? That's an optimization. Getting a high return on ad spend? That's completely different. So is providing an incredible workplace for your employees, and giving the highest possible quality service, or aiming for an 8-figure "exit" or sale of your company.
This goes back to mindset in that you need to know where you are in your business and where you want to go in order to know how to get there. Then you can use the wants & needs, breakthrough ideas, and traffic and awareness steps of the framework to get you to that optimized outcome.
Again - you have to know where you want to go in order to figure out how to get there.
The beginning of a new year is a perfect time to think about what you're optimizing for, the outcomes you want for yourself and your business, and chart a course, as it were, to that desired destination.
That focusing question, "what are you optimizing for" will get you 80% of the way there if you back up the answer with action.
Second, how big do you want to grow?
What does your ideal lifestyle look like? What did you decide back at step 2, when you listed out your wants and needs?
- Do you want to work 10, 20, 30, 40, or even 50 hours a week?
- Do you want to travel or work from home?
- How much money do you want to make?
- How much time do you want to take off?
- How much do you want to charge?
- How many different products or services do you want to offer (and maintain)?
Questions come first, answers second.
Once you have you answers, then you can start taking the right actions, in the right order, for a long enough period of time until your efforts inevitably lead to the result you want.
We cover this a lot deeper in the BUILD program, and this is the last time this week that I'll ask you to sign up.
If you want to build a resilient business this year, one that you have complete control over, that provides you the lifestyle you want, and gives you a ton of joy and fulfillment in your work, that's what the BUILD program is specifically for.
What it means for you is that in just a few hours each week of doing the right things in the right order, you'll build the foundation for the business that can then optimize and grow to any size you want.
What that really means is that you have the life you've always wanted, complete control over the results in your business, the freedom to build the exact business that supports your work for as long as you want to do it.
You can join me and others in the program today by clicking on the card below.