Every Friday, we’ll be posting short and quick business stories, tips and resources that have helped us grow Inspiralized. The series will be called #InspiralizedBoss and we hope they inspire others!
FROM THE DESK OF ALI MAFFUCCI, FOUNDER, INSPIRALIZED:
I sometimes equate building a business with dieting.
When you decide to go on a diet, you start with all of this motivation and excitement. YES, I’m going to finally reach my goal weight and get my dream body!
So, you buy books on weight loss, workout programs, and Pin inspirational quotes and images of toned thighs. You start on a specific date (most likely a Sunday or Monday) and you’re 100% committed to the goal.
You decide to work out 6 days a week, eat less than X amount of calories. You’re going to do X amount of squats a week and complete a burpee challenge by week two. You’re more motivated than ever and it’s going to work this time.
So what happens? 9 times out of 10, a few days or weeks later, you’re frustrated. You’ve lost sight of your goals, you’re crushing cookies at night by day 3, and you’re left feeling discombobulated. Why didn’t my plan work? What went wrong?
Well, you tried to do too much and it backfired. Yes, ideally, one day, you’ll be able to workout 6 days a week and eat super clean, but at first, when you’re starting from scratch, it’s too much. It’s too stressful to try to do it all and you’ll end up burning out.
Instead, you should resolve to just start with a single goal. Try cutting out sugar, if that’s your biggest downfall – or at least limit your sugar intake. Then, the next week, try building in a couple of workouts. By the end of the month, you’ll be exercising consistently and eating better. Fast forward a few months and you’ll have built yourself a healthy lifestyle and eventually achieve those initial goals you set with well intentions!You should resolve to just start with a single goal. via @Inspiralized #inspiralizedboss Click To Tweet
See the point here?
Like with starting a business, it’s crucial to begin with a focus list. A focus list is a list of things you want to focus on AT FIRST. Don’t overwhelm yourself with a bunch of benchmarks, goals, and “musts”. That will just lead to let down and as I mentioned before, burn out.
It’s all about focus. It’s important to sit down and simply say, “Okay. What are three things I need to focus on this month?” or “What is one thing I need to focus on today?”
For example, early on, I told myself, “This week, I’m going to focus on learning how to take better photos.” So, I resolved to do some research, apply my findings, and mess around with my camera until I got it. I focused the week by spending extra time each day on that (along with my daily duties, of course) and by the end of the week, I’ve picked up a few new tricks to make my photos better. And for a food blogger, photos are essential in growing your credibility and ultimately, your following and online presence. It’ll lead to you getting picked up by traffic-cows like BuzzFeed.
When I first started Inspiralized, of course I wanted to CONQUER THE WORLD. And when I did start, I tried to do too much, and I couldn’t devote enough attention to each project, so I grew slowly at first, which was certainly frustrating. Then, I realigned myself, started to focus on one or two things a month and by the end of year 1, I had secured a cookbook deal, started manufacturing my dream spiralizer, and was well on my way to 1 million page views monthly!
So what did I resolve to focus on at first, in the first year?
1. Quality content: without this, nothing else will follow. This also included photography. In essence, great recipes with great photography = quality content.
2. A better website design: if you want others to take you seriously as a business owner, take your business seriously and invest in it!
3. Building relationships: I wanted to spend my first year getting to know my fellow bloggers (ie my coworkers). I befriended those who were in the healthy lifestyle space, asked them for their advice, shared their recipes and then eventually, this encouraged them to share my recipes and their tricks of trade!
And that’s it! Year 2?
1. Build and market the Inspiralizer®, my first branded product.
2. Work with brands: to expand my network, make money, and continue to solidify my credibility.
Now what will year 3 bring? Well, we’re halfway through, so I’ll let you know once we’re done!
What did you focus on at first, when growing your business? How have those goals shifted/realigned?
Thank you for tuning in, and I hope you learned something new from this week’s #InspiralizedBoss post.