As I sit here still in my sweaty workout clothes, with my heart still slightly pounding and my back aching, I have decided to write my new year’s post. Why now, you ask? Maybe it’s because I’m happy about conquering the first day of P90X. Or maybe my mind is just wandering (as it often does) after a good workout.
Before you can understand my goals for next year, you have to understand where I was at almost a year ago. This will probably be a long post. If you’re interested, then strap in. If not, feel free to visit next time I update the blog (it will likely be shorter then). 🙂
About a year ago I was safe in a cozy office with a fairly decent job. A job which I had chosen only a few months before over my previous job of almost three years. When I chose to take the job, I was excited. I would finally be able to do what I loved to do, which is help businesses use social media to boost their business. This job also entailed a lot of writing. A task which I also enjoy. The job (for the most part) was going pretty well. I had received my 3 month review. It wasn’t the best review I’d ever received, but I was okay with it. That should have been a warning sign right there, but I blindly pushed ahead into the next couple of months.
I was into my fifth month at the beginning of January and I knew I was in trouble. My work had dropped off a bit and I was less happy with my job. At the time, I blamed it on the fact that the job was becoming something I didn’t like (something I thought I had left behind for good) and the fact that I knew my life would be changing very soon. But the real truth is that I just didn’t care enough about the work to really push myself the way I needed to.
Now, I do have to preface this next part with a short explanation. When I took the new job, I decided that I was going to give up doing freelance social media on the side. Since I was doing it for a living now, it only seemed natural. Then I got the life-changing news. We would likely be moving by summer-time. So again I dived into social media management in preparation for the move. Trying to keep up with a full-time job and doing social media on the side was taxing at best.
During Thanksgiving of 2011, my husband and I took a trip to Florida. That’s where he was planning on going to school (thus the move). So we went there to check out the school and the to see what the city and living options were like. As of this point, I had not told my boss that we were planning to move. Mostly because we weren’t sure if it would be Florida or not, or even if we would be moving in the summer. When I came back from Florida, I was hit with another change. They would be “restructuring” my job. I was actually happy about where my job was going. However, they wanted to make sure that if they moved me to the job position, that I would stay in the position. So the time came for me to tell them about my moving possibility. We had a long talk and by the end of it agreed that the job they were offering me could be done remotely. I started really working on ramping up the amount of social media side-work I was doing. This, combined with the expected change in my job would help set us up for the move. I thought I was golden.
Then came January 11th. It was a Wednesday, and I was already having a bad day. As I was about to leave for my lunch-break, I got called into the conference room. I knew it was serious, because of their tone of voice and the fact that both of my bosses were in the meeting. I was being laid-off, effective immediately. My boss calmly explained why they had made this decision. Honestly, his decision made sense to me. Faced with a move in six months that we didn’t have the money for, the fact that I wasn’t sure I could support us once we made the move, and being laid-off, I was understandably devastated. It took me a couple of days to bounce back. Once I did, one thing was clear to me. I had to make a go at doing social media freelance, full-time.
This past year has been an incredible ride. I have learned many lessons. Not the least of which is to work my ass of or I would get nowhere fast.
I don’t have any bad feelings against my boss. He was just doing what he needed to do to keep his company going. But it did hit me hard.
Goal #1: Do More Than Just “Social Media Management”
The bulk of what I do is social media management. I have done social media management for a long time. I love being able to help companies communicate with their customers online. I get a warm-fuzzy when customers respond positively to content that I produce. It means I’ve done something right. However, only doing social media management has left me feeling a bit lopsided, like a see-saw with only one person on it. There is so much more to social media than just management. There is training, consulting, and coaching, just to name a few. All of these I have tried to break into in the last year. I have had varying successes with each of these. So my goal this year is to continue to build my social media management portfolio, but to also start pushing training, consulting, and coaching as an alternative.
I love to train and teach about social media. I feel like it’s my best strength, and I don’t get to do it enough. So, I will continue to take on clients that want their social media managed, but I will be pushing the other areas I can help. I’m hoping to do a lot more of this kind of work in 2013.
Goal #2: Produce More Content, Consistently
Have you seen my blog lately? To say that I have been very inconsistent in posting is an understatement. It’s pathetic! Especially since I have 45 drafts in my WordPress posts section. That’s 45 opportunities I missed to get my message out there! I also had plans to do guest-blogging and share content to Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Scoop.it, etc. I have a lot of social media platforms to keep up with. I know it can be done, even with my limited time. I’m always telling my customers to take just 15 minutes of the day to work on content. I even tell them to set an alarm if they don’t think they’ll remember or if they’ll put it off until later. Unfortunately, I don’t do the same. From now on I will do everything to make sure that doesn’t happen. In fact I’ve already set an alarm on my phone!
On top of keeping this blog and the new blog at Team 3 Media (my new company) updated, I also have other content goals.
- Produce 1 paid Ebook per quarter (more on this later).
- Produce 1 free Ebook every two months.
- Produce 1 Zeen every quarter.
- Keep various social media accounts updated.
- Put out one “Facebook Changes” Newsletter per month (at least).
- Launch the weekly “Online Tips” Newsletter for Team 3 Media.
- Build inbound marketing campaigns to support products and services.
Goal #3: Create Extra Streams of Revenue
So, as I said above, I really want to do more than just social media management. One of those things is creating Ebooks and other products to help give me an extra stream of revenue. I have had a couple of Ebooks in mind (and in development) this last year. Most of the ideas have focused on Facebook (kind of my social media “home”). I have some ideas for other, broader topics, though. My goal in 2013 is to produce 1 Ebook (that I can charge for) per quarter. I will also try to produce 1 free Ebook every two months.
I’m already working on the first Ebook: 31 Days to An Awesome Facebook Page. I plan to have that done in the next couple of weeks. At that time, I’ll be releasing it to a select few for feedback before it’s officially published. If you’re interested in getting an advanced reader copy, drop me line here in the comments or email me through my contact form.
Goal #4: Finish My Book
Something that not a lot of people know about me, is that I want to be an author. Not just an author of Ebooks on how to use Facebook more effectively, but an author of fiction books. I have written for almost as long as I could read. I know that sounds impossible, but I assure you it’s not. I have very strong memories of my mother folding pieces of lined paper and stapling them together for me so I could write an actual “book”. I would illustrate the cover and write the story inside. The earliest memory I have of this is about second grade. So, I’ve been writing for a long time. Yet, I have never finished or published a book.
In fact, the book I’m working on right now has gone through several incarnations and I’ve been working on it for at least three years. It’s possible I’ve been working on it longer than that. I just found one of my note files and the date is November of 2008. It’s not the first book I’ve started, nor do I plan for it to be my last. However, this one will be finished. Even if it’s never published, I owe it to myself to finish writing it. To prove that I can do it.
It is also a goal which is tied to a milestone I have coming up this year. I will be turning 30.
30 to me is not a big scary number. It’s a stepping-stone on the way to the rest of my life. It’s also a marker. A marker for what I have and have not accomplished in the last decade. Since it’s about half-way through the year, it’s a good goal to shoot for. I’m about 1/3 of the way done with the first draft of my book (if my expected page-count holds). I’ll be pushing to get it done by my birthday, but it feels like something I have to do.
Goal #5: Use Your Systems
One of the other big lessons I’ve learned this past year is that systems matter. I don’t mean systems as in your computer system or any other hardware that may be used to get the job done. Though, these are important, too. What I mean is that everything you do has a system, even if you’re not aware of it. Your daily routine is a system. Your workflow is a system. How you prepare your food is a system. Your to-do list is a system. Everything you do is shaped by some sort of system. In order to be effective at getting things done and living your life, you have to define these systems by the goals that you want to achieve.
So this year, I will be working on the systems that I already have in place and I will be experimenting with new systems. I’ve found that when I use my systems properly, I accomplish more and am less cranky. Never underestimate the power of being less cranky to be more productive!
A Word On Goals Vs. Resolutions
I have decided that these are “goals” rather than “resolutions”. Mostly because I hate the term “New Year’s Resolution”. New Year’s resolutions rarely last beyond the first couple of months in the new year (if that)! And these are also meant to be worked during the entire year (except for #4). Anyway, in my head goals sound better than resolutions, so that’s what we’re going with!
As you can see, these goals overlap in some places. I didn’t plan it that way, it just happened. Because they overlap the goals should work to support each other in the coming year. Or at least that’s what I believe.
So, those are my goals for 2013. What are yours?
Hi, I’m Cassie. I love books and media and think that they have the power to change our lives. I also love to write, play games like Minecraft and ARK, cook, run, and dance. For a living, I provide Digital Marketing and Website Design services under the company I founded Team 3 Media. Currently, I’m working on writing more, learning to bake better bread, and staying consistent with my health and fitness goals.