My Year in Review – Looking Back on 2014 WPCP: 049
I debated on whether or not I should do a ‘Year in Review’ post this year. For like, a minute.
Of COURSE I wanted to do a year in review post!
It’s been an amazing year and I have a lot to be grateful for as well as share the things that didn’t go as planned and what I’ll be doing differently in 2015.
I’ve also decided there are two words that I will be my ‘words of the year’. I thought about picking just one word but then realized that I wanted to focus on two words and they really go hand in hand. This will all make more sense when I get to what’s coming in 2015 in a bit.
Let’s start with looking back on 2014
One of my intentions for 2014 was to travel for business.
And travel I did!
I started the year off with my first live mastermind event in San Diego with my EMPIRE mastermind at the end of January (I’m a member). This event shifted SO many things for me – as well as some things that didn’t shift the way I had hoped they would. I wrote a post & recorded a previous podcast episode about this trip because I went to my mastermind event and then piggy backed that with tickets to Traffic & Conversion Summit – which was just too much for me after a few intense days and I ended up heading home early.
Shifts for me:
- Paid traffic is essential
- Making offers has to be done consistently
- Spending time with people who are where you want to be is crucial to your success
- Stepping outside of your comfort zone won’t kill you (atv racing with the boys?)
Things that didn’t change the way I had hoped:
- It took me until this past summer to really get clear on what I was doing and where I wanted to take it
- I had a few personal “a-ha” moments on that trip that I thought would have stuck but didn’t… and I’m still working on that (I talk about this in more depth in the episode)
- My comfort level with promoting myself (again, more details in the episode)
The next few months had some ups and downs as well as another business trip to Arizona for Infusioncon with @DeannaFenton. I had decided to make the switch to Infusionsoft after my trip to San Diego (again, my second time with Infusionsoft and have since moved on to my MOST FAVORITE email marketing & sales company EVER… hatchbuck, but more on that later too).
The trip with Deanna was great and we both left excited about what Infusionsoft could do for our businesses.
Unfortunately all it did was cost me more money and aggravation and we’ve both moved on to #hatchbuckhappiness (yes, I’m totally going to coin that term and make it a legitamate hashtag).
Maui in May
This was one of those trips that I debated on whether or not I should go, but then decided to just bite the bullet and go (I don’t know if you do this or not, but I have a tendency – or use to – to waffle back and forth and then am always grateful I went).
The waffling was for a bunch of different reasons – but if this trip taught me ANYTHING it was that when in doubt- suck it up and make it happen. Period.
This was my second #EMPIRE mastermind event of the year (we do 3 each year) and it was another game changer. I had a ball zip-lining (it wasn’t the heights that did me in, it was one of my landings), an amazing evening at a Luau with everyone and two intense days of brain work and big picture thinking.
And I got upgraded to first class on the way over!
BOOM! (that was validation enough for me that I was supposed to be on that trip).
I recorded one of my first ‘in front of the camera’ videos with my friend Trey Lewellen – and had a BALL! I wanted to do more of those but just never quite got around to it (more on that later too). That will definitely be changing in 2015… in a big way.
Summer seems like a bit of a blur- not sure why (maybe because my kids are out of school? ) I participated in the ‘ice bucket challenge’ (brrr..) and hosted a wonderful 70th bday celebration for my Dad. As I’m thinking about last summer and the fact that it seems like a blur makes me realize I probably need to plan better for business…. and of course I have some ideas as I write this!
Hold the phone.
Something very significant occurred in August and I have to say it’s been a HUGE game changer (feel like I’m saying that a LOT these days).
I launched The WP Team.
The WP Team is design & development support for businesses – both WP Web Designers and professionals. The ‘professionals’ piece is more recent and may be more of the direction we take things in. I’ve built up a team over the last few years and as I started coaching I started offering these services to my coaching clients as well and it’s made a HUGE difference in their business.
Having connected with Troy Dean of WP Elevation last year was the blessing that kicked this into gear. Troy contacted me and said he’d be interested in testing the team and then offering it to some of his members in WP Elevation.
We had a handful of people jump in and work through our ‘beta’ phase with us. Some have stayed on and some felt it wasn’t a good fit for them.
In the meantime we’ve started opening it up to online business owners who just want to outsource different work to us (funnel set up, email marketing, some design & development, etc.). I’m not exactly sure what this looks like yet but we’re going to continue opening up these services and scale slowly and measure how it’s working.
It’s interesting to see where some people are able to jump in and get things rolling right away and some people need and want more project management. This is part of why I’m still sorting through what works and what doesn’t. One thing I will say is that creating this stream of recurring income is by far the smartest thing I’ve done in my business. Ever.
Wrapping up 2014
It was a busy fall both personally and professionally.
I added a couple more coaching clients (this is probably my most favorite thing to do now- along with podcasting), took another trip with EMPIRE Mastermind – where I was able to bring my kids since it was over their fall break – to Park City, Utah (beautiful place! I’d definitely go back). Our adventure on this trip was a hot air balloon ride… I was FLOORED that it wasn’t scary, or that I wasn’t scared. It was peaceful and beautiful.
It reminded me how important it is to look at things from a different perspective!
Oh… and that driving through Nevada has to be one of the most boring road trips EVER! (My sister & niece came too so we rented a mini-van and hit the road).
After Park City it was back to business and figuring out how to end the year on a high note.
Go BIG! Mastermind launched
Being a part of a mastermind is absolutely the BEST thing I’ve done for my business! I knew that after starting my own coaching in the last year that I wanted to launch a mastermind as well so I could leverage my time as well as have everyone else benefit from everything that comes from being part of a mastermind.
I partnered with my good friend & colleauge Deanna Fenton on the Mastermind because I knew together we could provide even more value.
To say it’s been awesome would be an understatement.
Our members are now reaching out and connecting directly with one another to see how they can support one another in their journeys. This is EXACTLY why we started the Mastermind.
We’ll be hosting our first live event in Lake Tahoe, CA in April and it’s going to be off the charts!
OH! And I almost forgot…
I launched a free group on Facebook called “Profiting with WordPress” and would love to have you join us! Click here to join the group.
Of course all of this hasn’t been without some challenges, lessons learned and good ol’ fashioned ‘take aways’.
What I learned in 2014
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- I am without a doubt, my own worst enemy
- Imperfect action is better than no action
- While jumping in is great, I also know I need to do things “my own way”
- Spending time with like-minded people is crucial to your success
- If you don’t promote yourself, no one else will
- Investing in your business isn’t a luxury, it’s a necessity
- Sometimes that means you have to invest in yourself first
- You can’t grow without building a team
- The more you grow your business, the more the ‘trolls’ will show up. Take it as a sign that you’re on the right track
- EVERY time I get a nervous/anxious feeling in my gut I know it’s the right direction
- All businesses come down to 3 things: Offers, Leads and Sales
I almost doubled my income last year- and no, I’m not complaining that it was an ‘almost’! I have no doubt that I will more than double my income in 2015 with what I have planned and what I’m focusing on.
Where my income came from:
– Client work
– WP Team (design & developmnet support)
– Affiliate income
I’m literally sitting here tripping out about this right now because I didn’t do nearly the amount of planning for last year as I have already for this upcoming year. I’m much more focused on strategies and implementation. I feel like my testing the waters phase is behind me and I’m crystal clear on where I’m headed and what I’m doing.
And I’m SO very grateful for that!
What’s coming in 2015 and my “two words” for the year
I’ll be launching a revision of my site by the first week in January (I’ll do a complete post on this process and why I went with a revision as opposed to a ‘new’ site). I’ve got a new opt-in offer to go right along with the new look as well.
I’m launching a course in January with my good friend Jonathan Perez of Sure Fire Web Services called ‘Selling with WordPress’ (you can sign up here for early notification), which will be followed by another course a few months later (Teach with WordPress).
I ABSOLUTELY Love the work I’m doing with my coaching clients! I only wish I’d started this sooner!
Growing the Mastermind
Continue growing the Mastermind and host at least two live events in 2015 (with April on the books already we’ll be looking at late summer or September for the second event).
I’ll be attending all 3 Live EMPIRE events (Vegas in Feb., Maui in July and Florida in October). I’d also like to take another trip to the UK this year and spend some time in Ireland. 🙂 Probably a 10 day trip.
I also plan on getting over to Australia this year and doing an event there with Troy Dean (holding you to this one Troy!)
Getting in FRONT of the Camera
This was something I said I wanted to do more of this year and didn’t. So I’m going to go ‘ALL IN’ with this one and hire the brilliant Matthew Peters to help me create a complete video strategy and implementation plan. More on that later, but it’s an investment and committment I’m making for myself.
I’ll also be doing this on my own- I’m not going to wait until I begin working with Matthew on this (which will hopefully begin at the end of January).
Continue building my team
I added 5 people to my team this past year and plan on cotinuing to grow this year. My first hire will be for a marketing manager and personal assistant (for my business). I already have this person lined up and would like to have them on board by the end of February. 🙂
Putting my Health First
This is something I tend to put second and I know in order to do the things I want to do I need to lose the weight and be as fit and healthy as I possibly can. Which means my day starts after my workout and I continue juicing (fell in love with juicing this past year after watching “Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead”. I’m going to participate in a 28 day juice reboot in January. YIKES! Here we go! I made it public).
And finally, my “two words” for 2015.
Consistency & Selling.
Consistency with EVERYTHING I do.
Publishing: content, podcasts, social media and my newsletter
Consistency in marketing and making offers.
And Selling because that’s what businesses do. They sell products and services. I’m going to focus on selling from a place of integrity with who I am and what is important to me.
One thing I won’t be doing is apologize for selling, which I know will probably bring some unsubscribes, but that’s o.k. I’ll continue building an audience of people that understand that businesses provide value and make offers.
Links from this episode
Selling with WordPress Course