As we close out 2019 and enter a new year and a new decade it’s only appropriate to honor the past year by celebrating your joys, mourning your losses, and shaking your head at the wonder of all of it.
Today I wanted to get very honest and transparent with you and share an unexpected joy of mine from 2019.
I know many of you have direct sales experience or are currently in one so I think this story will help you in many ways find clarity if you are thinking of expanding or pivoting your business portfolio.
But before I dive in… let me give you some backstory. For the past seven years, I placed my direct sales business as the top priority in my life… It was my main income stream, at times it even matched or exceeded my husband’s coaching income, it was my main commitment to grow and it really revolved around most of my conversations, how I lived, and who I hung out with or talked to. I had become such a mold of that company and the culture and really drank the kool-aid, to be honest.
Until this year…
If you know my story you know that in February of 2017 I pressed send on my first email to paying clients who wanted my help with creative branding. You see… A few years into my direct sales business, I was becoming frustrated with the copy and paste marketing tactics reinforced throughout our industry.
As a creative, I knew there had to be other ways to connect with my audience than with company photos and sales captions. If I was sick and tired of seeing the same images and promotions in my timeline, I knew my readers had to feel the same way.
As I started to change the way I created original content by sharing my authentic journey, personal photos, and giving my audience a behind the scenes look into my business; other business owners wanted to learn how to do the same.
So in February of 2017 is when my ‘little’ branding business began.
Every month since then I watched my client number grow from 11 paying clients in my first month to over 400 just 24 months later.
There was something so immense building inside me and pulling at my heartstrings. The skills I had and the passion I was having for business and authentic marketing were guiding me to take my branding business to the next level.
In January of 2019, I made my biggest investment to date (at that time) to purchase a course on how to build a digital course. I had released a branding course before but had never gotten guidance on the whole webinar, marketing, email sequence, and set up of how to really build one and promote it.
I spent the $1,500 on that course and put my head down for 3 months to build my own.
Through that time, every day I poured my heart and soul into researching my ideal clients, updating content that I already had, recording new videos, setting up my webinar, the funnel sequences, ads, and all the launch info.
It was ALOT… And I became OBSESSED with all of it.
It was hands down the hardest thing technically to do… but the most unexpected, thrilling pivot I’ve ever made.
To have faith in MYSELF and my talents to put together a $300 course was mindblowing to be able to accomplish all of it… then to see it have an $8,000 launch in two weeks was even more verification that this was my lane.
I was talking last week with my friend Jennifer Burkhart who’s also my business coach and virtual assistant. She’s also in direct sales and we were reflecting on our journey that led us to direct sales, then to where we both are now… which is using our passions and skills to build our own businesses.
She mentioned something that really made it all clear to me.
Most of the people who join a direct sales company are coming from a full-time career, or as a stay at home mom, or a coach’s wife…. Or some other “title”…. And when you get into this business ownership role inside your direct sales company you start seeing small wins, new clients, and new paychecks coming into your bank account… And even if those checks are only a couple of hundred dollars a month they are evidence of your SALES ability. Confirmation that you CAN do something other than being a ‘teacher’ or a ‘nurse’ or a ‘mom’ or a ‘wife’.
With this comes the idea that maybe you could do MORE with what you know already or have a passion about… you start to think, “well maybe I could start my own business; teaching others how to apply makeup, or how to use Pinterest for your business, or how to start their own organic farm, or how to cook healthier meals for their family, or coaching other business owners.”
This POINT right here is my magical spot where I can step into their lives and say HELL YES you can. Let me show you exactly how to make that happen.
And let me note… Those business ideas are ALL actual businesses that exist today in my client’s lives because they had faith in themselves to take action on the idea. Their actions led to more confidence and they now own multiple businesses.
They removed the handcuffs of just; being a mom/teacher/nurse/wife and a direct sales rep…. And they had the guts to say YES… this direct sales business was an integral part of my life to bring me the confidence needed to do more to springboard me into my next chapter… but my entrepreneurial journey does not stop here… I am made for even more and I can help make a bigger impact by living out my own passions to serve others with my individual skills and gain not only a paycheck from it but more fulfillment.
And I think you might need to hear that today. You are going to hear a lot of people tell you can’t do something… it could come from a company leader, a friend, your spouse or a parent. But I’m here to tell you you can.
So to recap, an unexpected joy in 2019 would be shaking up my business priorities and putting my personal brand marketing business front and center. I am now investing in ME and the business I’ve built from scratch instead of putting all of my energy into a direct sales business that I couldn’t control the income from and my passion for was disintegrating.
When I think back to January of 2019 and if I had not spent that money to take that course I don’t think that I would be in this position today with such a clear vision of where my life is headed.
The amount of clarification that has come in these past 12 months is very mind-blowing if you were to know the ins and outs of it all… but without reading an entire book to you today I want you to realize that you CAN be multi-passionate and own more than one business.
You don’t need to be restrained to one company. One paycheck. One set of friends. One tribe of women. One ANYTHING.
If you are not feeling 100% confident in your direction…. Stop and do some self-discovery. Stop listening to other people and learn more about yourself. You have gifts inside of you right now that people need in their life. The story you are holding back inside and keeping for yourself has so much value and power. When you step into your core purpose of what you were meant to do and who you were meant to serve you will change someone else’s life with your knowledge.
So as I close out 2019 I’m so grateful for my direct sales business and all the experiences and people that came with it. I know without a doubt I would not have had the confidence to press send on the email in 2017 to start my branding business. I learned new skills, got better in so many areas and most importantly learned that you should always put people’s wants first, not your own.
So to close out this last Branding Bites episode in 2019 I will let you know that my unexpected joy in 2019 to put my Personal Brand Marketing Business front and center paid off literally. This year my branding business brought in 50% of the annual income that my on-going direct sales business did in 2019 and for that, I’m so thankful and proud of myself for going for it and for each of you for being a part of my journey. In the last quarter of 2019, I took my business even further as I started this podcast and hired two people to my team. Which is another huge moment in itself.
I believe we are layered in experiences that lead us to our next purpose. One passion can lead to another until you know without a doubt you are living in your lane and serving the people God put you here to serve.
You simply need to unlock and shine a light on all the actions, behaviors, and preferences you already possess.
Search by the current stage of your brand + business in order to find more relative content to help you along with your journey.
I help online business owners go from feeling stuck and stagnant to being in total control of how to generate high-quality leads and increase their sales conversions.
I believe the two keys to establishing a lasting business are (1) using your personal experiences to connect with others and (2) automating your sales process.
Whether you build a sales process yourself or have it done for you, I want you to have options available so you can take action today.
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