Welcome to part two of a two week post, you can find part one here. Last week I went over the first key steps when considering if an online design business is right for you. A successful business starts with a passion but must fulfill a need. Once you have found your passion and have identified a need, you’re ready to…. Jump Right In!!!!
Production and Marketing...First!
What I did DO was focus all my time and effort on producing what I was selling and marketing myself and my shop. Nobody will buy what you are producing if they can’t find you.
Your time will be best spent when you focus on these two key areas when first launching your business. Just think about it...Your customers don’t care about the name of your company or your logo. What they do care about is what you are offering them. There’s always time to improve these other areas later on.
Don’t Worry About Logo and Branding ….Yet.
When launching my Etsy shop, I put all my energy into producing and marketing. Then I hit the ground running! By doing so, I was able to gain exposure and traction quickly. I didn’t put much thought into my logo or branding. I just threw something together. Looking back, I am actually quite embarrassed about what I put up. Great or not, IT WORKED!!!! Customers just wanted cut files and that’s what I gave them. They didn’t care about anything else.
If I had put much thought in the details of my Etsy shop, my logo, my branding and even my business name, I would have 1) probably never launched or 2) spent days or weeks focusing on things that really didn't matter.
I wasn’t worried much about the logo and branding, I still needed a name for my shop. My business was selling and an online source for vector images. So, I combined them creatively and chose “V Source”. Voila! **mic drop** Done!
But wait!! Stop the presses! After hearing the name of my business, my husband chuckled and informed me that the name sounded like I was selling something more than just cut files! **mouth agape** Needless to say, I quickly changed the name to "SVG Source". This name wasn’t much better but, it described my business and people knew exactly what I was providing ...and nothing more...LOL!
There’s always time to work on your logo and branding later! Once my business was up and running and a little more established, I was able to change the name and branding to better suit my audience. When starting out you might not know your audience enough to make these decisions. This process can take time. By waiting, you can better identify the customer’s needs and base your decisions on what will speak to them.
Everyone Has An Opinion...blah blah blah!
In the beginning, I was worried about what other people thought of me when I started up my online Etsy cut file business. I was even embarrassed to tell my family. “Ya, Ya, I know!” **eyeroll** I have no idea why I was embarrassed. Looking back, I now realize how much their opinions impacted me. I felt very intimidated telling people about my new venture. There has always been a negative stigma around start up businesses. Especially when you are selling something that most people have never heard of. I even went as far as trying to hide my business for a while.
…..And I Just Don’t Care!!! When I finally decided to stop worrying about what other people thought, I was able to remove mental barriers that were preventing me from progressing. Being a Christian, I believe there is only one person who should have a say in what I do.. HIM. Oh, and of course, my handsome husband. **heart heart heart** Remember No One Else Matters! NO ONE!! They are only in control of their own lives, not yours. Only you and your immediate family will be affected by the decisions you make today and in the future. So, don’t cripple your efforts by letting other people have a say in what you do with your life.
THE POWER OF FUTURE PACING
“What is future pacing?” you ask. You have probably been future pacing and not even known it. Future pacing is the process of visualizing or imagining yourself in the future.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
What does success look like for you?
Money, A New Car, Home...The possibilities are endless!! For me, I imagined myself down the road, where I am at today and where I will be in the future. I imagined myself being debt free and living a financially free life and what that will look like for our family and our lifestyle. In the beginning, I imagined making 3K and what we could do with that money. I remember thinking about swapping out our vehicle, that was going to Kick The Bucket at any moment, for a more reliable car.
Now, I imagine a farmhouse with a white fence and some land with farm animals that our children can help raise. I also imagine having a consistent passive income where I work minimum hours each week and make enough money for my husband to be able to quit working long hours, yet still be debt free. Future pacing can be as detailed as you want.
Future pacing gives you motivation through the tough times!! I can see us living this dream lifestyle and I know once we get there it will be the sweetest most amazing reward for all of our hard work. Future pacing has worked amazingly for me and it can for you too. However, this might not be as effective for you. That’s okay! I encourage you to find your “why” and focus on that through all the “suck” times in your business. Trust me, there will be many! Future pacing has been what has got me through all the failures and hard times when all I wanted to do is quit.
What is the end result? When you visualize your why, the lifestyle, and what it will take to get there, you will eventually identify the actions needed to get where you want to be. Just like navigating a trip, you cannot reach your destination without first knowing where you are going and how to get there. You are much more likely to achieve what you set out to do when you can picture what the end result will be.
Gear Up For Reverse Engineering!
Reverse Engineering is the process of looking at your goal first, then figuring out how to get there. In other words, you are working backwards from your goal and identifying the steps it will take to achieve the goal. For example, 3K a month was my goal because this would replace my corporate job paycheck. So, with that in mind, I asked myself, “What do I need to do to reach that number?” In order to reach 3K a month, I knew I had to make around $100 a day in sales. This became my goal. Shortly after launching my shop and having a few sales coming in, I had enough data to help me identify what I needed to do in order to reach 3K per month. Next, I was able to set daily and weekly goals. For instance the amount of new products to list daily to achieve my goal.
That’s All Folks!!!
These were the main strategies that helped me earn income quickly after launching my design business. First, as we learned in Part 1 of this post, you must identify your passions then identify an area of need and how you can meet that need.
Today, it’s all about Diving In Without Overthinking The Details. The early days are all about production and marketing. Don’t let other people’s opinions impact your ability to move forward. Future Pace your BIG goal to help motivate you through the “suck” moments, Which Will Come, I promise. **eye roll** Once you have figured out the BIG goal, use Reverse Engineering to set your daily and weekly goals.
Earning an income online has given my family the flexibility we need in order for me to stay at home. Not only does it help my mental health, but it also helps me be a better mom and wife. I am so happy to be doing something I love, each day! I have this overwhelming feeling and constantly ask myself, "Wow, is this even real right now?" I am happy to say that IT IS!! I know it can be for YOU TOO!!
Words Of Encouragement From Kasey--Remember, starting your own business isn’t easy. There will be many “sucks” along the way that will make you question, “What The Heck Am I Doing?” However, I promise, YOU WILL FIND SUCCESS!!! You just need to 1) Show up and work hard each day. 2) Make wise business decisions, 3) Continue seeking opportunities to expand your knowledge and experience, 4) Stop listening to the negative and beating yourself up, And lastly, 5) Focus on what is best for you and your family.
I love to you hear back from you! What have you found helpful when starting your own online business? What has held you back from starting an online business? Share your thoughts and suggestions below.
Have a great weekend everyone! I’ll see you next week.