One year ago, we launched Strong Brand Social Express. My goal with this blog post is to share the most valuable lessons I’ve learned over the past 52 weeks in a way that will offer you insight to your own impact, outlook, and business.
- In the past year, we’ve published seven courses, served more than 6,500 brands, and worked closely with hundreds of businesses to build their content and social media marketing programs from the inside out. It sounds amazing and in so many ways it has been, but when you build something from scratch and you bootstrap it from the ground up, there will always be a gap between where you are and where you want to be. As a founder, leader, or entrepreneur, your brain will be months or years ahead of your current status. Take extra care not to let this shake out as frustration with yourself and your team because that’s much more toxic than accepting the fact that you’re a mere mortal making human-paced progress.
- The work of giving yourself grace and living with yourself in this space is a huge personal development opportunity. I’m not sure I’ll ever completely evict the voices in my head that visit on the weekends to tell me all of the things about me and what I’m doing that aren’t good enough. But I know that 10 years from now, in my relationships and whatever work I’m doing, I will be a stronger, more supportive and empathetic leader for the time I’ve spent working to accept where I am — with all the progress and limitations that I face.
- If you have an idea, a product, or a service that can genuinely help people, build community, or make the world a better place, your perfectionism is holding more than just you back.
- Embracing the concept of progress over perfection ensures two things: One, your people can have your support sooner than if your ego wins out and you insist on perfection. Two, you have the incredible opportunity to engage your people in the cultivation and fine tuning of the very thing you are creating (which is key, since it’s about them, not you). You establish a starting point, and people tell you what they need from there, one product iteration at a time.
- You are not everyone’s cup of tea. When you turn on that funnel, launch those ads, announce a new product, or turn up your email marketing, you will find your haters (or trolls, as we call them in the social media marketing world). You did not come all of this way to let these people — who spend more time criticizing others than creating — stop you. Of all of the challenges you face, don’t make this one bigger than it needs to be. Ignore, delete, ban, block, and keep moving forward.
- Though it’s not as important to everyone as it is to me, my personal philosophy is that most of us spend most of our lives working, and so we have the opportunity to make sure those hours are spent doing things we like around people who fill us up instead of drain us. When I started my agency in 2017, this was a huge motivator for me: I was tired of being underutilized and undervalued at work, so I wanted to create a place where I could do great work around people I enjoyed, prioritize our collective development, and live where I wanted to (regardless of the job market). Simply put, I wanted to create a great place to work. I was told by more than one advisor that “this wasn’t going to be enough to get me there.” But less than four years after leaving my corporate job, my company has passed the profitable-seven-figure-milestone, our team is stronger than ever, and we’re just getting started. So if anyone tries to tell you that community and personal development isn’t motivating enough to find success in business, find someone else to talk to.
- The most beneficial effect of transparent marketing is how it will help you find your people, whether you’re selling a product or a service. For years, I’ve been hanging around this internet business and marketing scene, and I never felt like the communities I was in were aligned with who I was as a human. That all changed as soon as we launched an ad featuring me and my team hanging out at one of our favorite restaurants with copy that I wrote from the heart. Now we get to share this journey with folks who share our values and light us up, making the whole mess of entrepreneurship so much more manageable (shoutout to my Strong Brand Social Club community, we are so grateful for our little pod).
Thanks for being here and being a part of this. I’m looking forward to our continued collective success and development!
In your corner,