January 2018 recap

Episode 98: January 2018 – Small Business Boss Recap

We’re going boldly where we’ve never gone before and taking you behind-the-scenes into what exactly we’re doing at Scoop Studios and Small Business Boss. In this episode, we’re recapping January and sharing some of our big insights and a-has from the past month.

If there’s one thing we love and find super helpful, it’s the glimpse behind the curtain of other people’s businesses. Especially as it can be so hard to tell online what’s real and what’s totally fake. Starting now, each month we’re going to do a recap of the month before and share what’s up with you, our listeners.

When we started January, we had a few key priorities— landing new clients for Scoop Studios, making sure we were out there being visible on social media and doing speaking gigs, as well as getting our switch to ConvertKit wrapped up.

Here’s how things went in January:

Landing New Clients

  • We had an ambitious revenue goal going into the month, but historically, January isn’t a fabulous month for us, so we knew we had to get into action mode to make it happen.
  • We focused a lot on proactive outreach, and that really paid off. The whole thing about the money following your energy holds true here for us. We landed 8 new client engagements in the first 31 days of the year.
  • We ended the month ahead of our big goal — which feels amazing. Now we want to continue to see that kind of monthly revenue every month for the rest of 2018.
  • One thing we really have to watch out for is that we manage our time in a way that our outreach and new business dev don’t fall off. Typically, we get “busy” and then we peace out a bit on it, which hurts us later.
  • Our motto for 2018 is “book the client then we’ll figure the rest out” — capacity issues are real, but it’s never as bad as we think.

Switch to ConvertKit

  • January was our first full month using ConvertKit, and we’re thrilled we made this change. It’s made a lot of things much simpler for everyone.
  • As we mentioned in the last episode, it’s saved me time and also empowered the rest of the team to be able to find things that were previously too complex.
  • The change forced us to streamline, which has actually allowed us to create fewer, better emails.
  • It’s just SO much easier. It’s a great reminder that just because you can doesn’t mean you should.
  • We’ve started making some decent affiliate income from ConvertKit, and it makes that much more sense that we are using them as well. We feel aligned recommending what we actually use.

Branding

  • Mid-way through the month, we had a bit of a come to Jesus moment about our Small Business Boss branding. It’s not working for us, and we need to have that brand stand alone.
  • Right now, it’s passable, but it’s just not us; it’s the proverbial “step kid” of our agency brand, and it’s quite frankly far more playful in colors and looks than either of us are.
  • We’ve engaged a creative director to help us figure this out and get it to a place that feels like us and helps set us apart. We’re super excited about the little bit of work we’ve done on that so far!
  • In the meantime, we’ve done some adjustments to our messaging which is way more on point. We would never have been able to have this conversation in the first place if we didn’t have time in our schedule to work ON our business. Even in a month full of new clients and projects, we invested the time needed to move the brand ahead.
  • Stay tuned for Small Business Boss branding 2.0 soon!

Instagram

  • Poor Instagram. We’ve been so back and forth on it until now, and we finally decided to give it a real shot and invest some time and energy into it for this quarter.
  • One of the big reasons we need to do this is because, with separation now between the Agency and Small Business Boss, we need to build SBB into its own thing — with a distinct presence + voice. (As well as focus on building our audience over time.)
  • In January, we saw some very nice growth which makes sense as we ramped up our overall activity and strategy there.
  • Like almost every other brand, we get way more engagement on IG than Facebook.
  • We’ll be continuing with our IG strategy and welcoming organic growth, though we see IG at this point as being more of a support vehicle for promoting other platforms like our podcast, Youtube, etc. and a way to provide curated, niched content for service business owners.

Speaking/Being Seen

  • A big focus for both of us in 2018 is to stop hiding out and to be out there speaking, and so far so good!
  • It’s definitely not been comfortable, but it’s happening now, so we need to get it together.
  • Maggie spoke at a women in business event locally last month and has another event lined up for March with her township at their business breakfast. She’s already got a few other local ones set for 2018 and is now on the hunt to try to find some bigger stages locally or regionally.
  • Brittany will be speaking about email marketing at the upcoming Design Blogger’s Conference in Beverly Hills. Stayed tuned to hear how it goes!
  • We did submit an application to talk about this podcast for Podcast Movement 2018, so we’ll see on that.
  • If you have suggestions or an event you’re organizing — talk to us. See, that’s us putting it out there!

Word of the Year/How We’re Feeling

  • Brittany
    • I didn’t really land on a word for the year, and at the risk of sounding cheesy, I just have this really good solid feeling that I’m on the right path business and personal wise and right where I’m supposed to be. So I’m just trusting and leaning into that.
    • Also, while I’m a huge #februaryisthenewjanuary proponent, my January was actually pretty great overall, especially for my mental health, which is saying something. The best January on record in a long time. And I think that was due to regular walks every morning, adequate sleep, and staying focused and clear about the important things.
  • Maggie
    • My word for the year was unstoppable, but then I woke up on New Year’s day with a problem with my SI joint in my back. I wasn’t feeling unstoppable. I nearly threw my word out the window. Brit made me revise it to unstoppable but human, LOL, which has been good as I had a cough and cold, and my energy wasn’t feeling superhuman in any way. But then I decided to revise it anyway, so my new word is Bad Ass Bitch. (Yes, for real.)
    • January was a good month business-wise, and I did a few personal things, but for the most part, I was super realistic. I didn’t push myself like I usually would and focused on sleeping and relaxing. I watched some serious Netflix and then read a lot of books.
    • I started the year with some personal goals that were, quite frankly, not gonna happen in January with the way my mood was, and I promptly revised them.
    • My big biz goal was habit related — to manage my inbox better — and that’s going great. It’s a small thing, but it’s working well.

Links for this show:

SUBSCRIBE TO THE PODCAST