I once read somewhere that the way you spend New Year’s Eve will predict the way you spend the rest of the year. Personally, I was looking forward to ringing in 2018 surrounded by two of my favourite things: good food and good friends.
But if the past year taught me anything, it’s that life rarely goes as planned (so stop wasting your time worrying about all of the elements that are out of your control).
There’s a reason you didn’t see any celebratory Instagram story updates from Luke and I on NYE. First of all, we missed the countdown completely—and not because we went to bed early (that would have been a much better trade off). Instead, we were up all night facing Luke’s second battle with food poisoning (or some awful 24-hour bug) of the holiday.
On a positive note, we were dealing with it together, something we’ve really gotten the hang of, thanks to this whole business partnership thing. And rather than dwell on all that went wrong, this is the prediction I am taking with me into the new year: we’ll handle whatever comes our way, shoulder to shoulder, hand in hand.
If I knew then what I know now, I may have hesitated for a little while longer…
I may have decided to wait – to take more time to top up our emergency savings account, to really figure out our five-year plan.
The last two years haven’t been easy. There have been months when we struggled to pay all of the bills. Weeks when our work would come before our marriage. Days when we questioned whether we made the right choice.
But if there’s one lesson I’ve learned over the last few years, it’s that goals and plans are merely a guideline. While they certainly serve their purpose, it’s rare that all of the boxes get checked, that all of the steps fall gently into place.
Making big life decisions is hard. And when you tend to overthink everything (like I do), they weigh heavily upon your shoulders.
But I’ve learned quickly that action is better than inaction. It’s better to take a step in the wrong direction than to not move at all. It’s better to learn and grow from your mistakes than to miss out on an opportunity you never knew was there.
The truth is: You aren’t supposed to have it all figured out.
Your online presence is a representation of your brand.
It’s not enough to simply be present on your social media platforms – you have to be engaging.
This means taking your strategy beyond the last-minute posts you publish while standing in line to pay for your lunch.
It requires a thoughtful plan and strategy to ensure your content cuts through the noise online and helps build real, meaningful relationships with your audience.
Whether you are just sitting down and hammering this out for the first time, or you have attempted to put pen to paper on a strategy before, we’ve got you covered with the six key steps to creating connections that convert on social media.
Do you find yourself falling into the comparison trap on social media?
Everyone does it.
Not just on a personal level, but professionally too.
You see other business owners with more likes, more followers… And you feel like what you’re doing is never enough.
It’s an undertow of negativity; you try to fight against it, but it just keeps sucking you in.
The truth is, there will always be someone, somewhere who is doing more of this and less of that.
Don’t let them distract you from pursuing your own goals and values.
They’re not you.
And you’re only seeing a filtered version of their truth. You have no idea what’s really going on behind the curtain.
According to the New York Times, in the real world, The National Enquirer (a weekly publication) sells nearly three times as many copies as The Atlantic (a monthly) every year. But on Facebook, The Atlantic is 45 times more popular.
More likes doesn’t mean more business. It doesn’t mean greater success or happiness.
Have you ever been told you weren’t fit for a job before you even applied for it?
Has someone in a position of power ever suggested you wouldn’t rise to the top because you couldn’t “do it all?”
How would you respond if someone excluded you from a promotion simply based on your age and presumed life choices?
We know it’s illegal for employers to make hiring decisions based on a woman’s lifestyle. But what about when you do it to yourself?
How often are you skipping out on opportunities because you’re trying to “plan ahead?”
It’s a frightening reality for millennial women. We launch our careers in aim of big, ambitious goals, with dreams of our future children hiding in the back of our minds. Before long, our visions for having a family “one day” impact nearly every decision we make.
It’s like we’re preparing ourselves for this inevitable trade-off we’ve come to accept simply because the social norms suggest doing so.
One of the hardest things we have to do as social media marketers is explain to our clients that it’s NOT just about ‘likes’ and ‘followers’.
Admittedly, it is nice to see your popularity growing.
It’s easy to get sucked into measuring success through the like economy on social media.
But life—and business—is about so much more than that.
We always say ‘content is king’. Here’s why:
I have a question for you. It’s an important one…
If your business page was deleted off of Facebook tomorrow, would anyone miss you?
Would they even notice that you disappeared?
I want you to think long and hard about this.
What impact are you really having on your audience?
When we first voiced our decision to go into business together, we got a lot of looks. “You’re brave,” people would say. “How will you separate life from work?”
I don’t think there is any perfect answer to that question.
Have there been hard times? No Doubt. Have there been times where we were at each other’s throats? Sure. But has it been the most rewarding experience professionally, and personally, that we have had together? You betcha.
Just over a year ago I joined Web of Words, and my wife, Carly, on this journey that she started exactly one year before that. Though we had long talks leading up to me joining the fight, nothing can actually prepare you for the real thing. Waking up next to the same person you work with every day? Admittedly, it does not—and will not—work for some people.
They say year two is one of the hardest years to survive as an entrepreneur. This past year has certainly presented its share of obstacles. It’s not easy when your work is so entrenched in your personal lives. It’s not easy drawing the line between being business partners and husband & wife.
But if you find a way to do it effectively, we believe there is no greater force to build a business with. Web of Words is truly designed with love.
It’s created from a desire for creativity. A passion for the hustle. A hunt for the freedom to shape our own lives.
But most importantly, it’s created by YOU. Our clients. Our followers. Our supporters. Our friends and family.
You are the ones who have made year two one we will look back on with pride. You are the ones who have made our dreams possible.
Thanks to you, we made it.
And you better believe we’re only going to get better and stronger from here.
‘Tis the season… Consumerism is at its strongest force and suddenly we all forget the real meaning of Christmas.
Instead, we’re stealing parking spots from one another and waiting in lineups in below freezing temperatures just to scoop up some door crashing prize we don’t really have a use for.
Or, if you’re like me, you’re procrastinating the day away, watching horrifying YouTube videos of Americans throwing punches in Target because someone grabbed the last Robotic Dog named CHiP.
You better believe I’ll be the farthest distance from a shopping mall on Black Friday. (Okay, that’s a bit of an exaggeration because I will likely be working from home and there is, in fact, a mall in this town).
Still, I’m tempted to turn out the lights and just hibernate in my own little world this time of year. Of course, it isn’t going to work that way… at least if I want to pay the credit card bill come January.
And while we’re left sifting through the latest promotions in our inboxes and dodging online ads like it’s nobody’s business, the question all entrepreneurs are asking right now is this:
How do I stand out amongst the noise?
And the answer quite simple actually: you tell a story.