Welcome back to another episode of The Struggle, where we dive into raw and real material of what goes on through the mind of an entrepreneur as well as behind-the-scenes of digital marketing. This article is very simple, thirty minutes of non-stop, unedited documentation of thoughts that come to mind during work hours of digital marketing. The rules are to keep writing for the time period and to always end on a positive note.
If you are new to this series, thank you for joining. This project is ultimately to help myself dive into an uncomfortable level and get better at writing. It may be redundant and boring to some but I promise there is some logic to this mess. For one, if you don’t know me my name is Steven Bustrin, I own and run H2 Digital, a marketing company started back in 2015. We work with small to mid-sized companies across the globe on their digital marketing strategies and social campaigns.
With The Struggle, I wanted to share some of my ongoing experiences through the companies that we currently serve as well as some experiences looking back at the companies we previously served.
This episode, article, whatever you want to call it, is about a thought that I end up always coming back to: Strategy. In my personal life and business life I tend to discover that not many people even focus on strategy. Strategy of what you want in life and how you want to accomplish those goals. I realize that not everyone is motivated or goal driven, which is fine, but everyone is moved by something.
When I first started commercial photography I didn’t have an end goal other than to make money. And that’s not a bad thing. What I didn’t understand is how I was going to get sustainable money and provide lasting value as a professional. Fast forward to today, six years later, I understand that strategy and processes are almost everything.
For example, in my personal life I have weight goals and fitness aspirations to have the highest energy possible to be able to transfer over into my professional life. Knowing that if I can produce at a higher rate for a longer period of time I will be able to produce more, faster, and in the end be able to take on more work which ultimately makes me more money. The issue I continue to run into is consistency with those goals. One day I will be producing at a high rate, full of energy, loving life and then the next day I can barely get out of bed to take a shower I’m so tired.
So, the adjustments that I’ve been having to make is setting a schedule, putting together a strategy through processes to make sure that I am producing as high as I can but also not burning myself out. If you are a freelancer or a creative of some sort you can understand that the burnout effect is real.
What I’ve learned for myself is to first sit down and look at myself in the mirror and evaluate what I really want in life. Is Money? Status? Fulfillment? What is it that I really want? And for the record, some days I literally have to look at myself in the mirror because it’s hard mentally talking to a wall. At any rate, I write down everything that comes to mind for about five to ten minutes and when I’m done I look at all of those things in front of me to see which are the top two, maybe three and write those on a new page.
After I put together a couple of things that I really want in life I create a schedule for the week of how I am going to accomplish those things that I want. It seems simple but what I am really doing is setting mental reminders to keep myself focused. Every Sunday I go through this process of what I want the week to look like and then make the schedule of execution.
During the week I check off each day those little movements that get me closer to my goal so by the end of the week, on Sunday, I can assess how many execution points I marked off. It’s like a little report card of my performance each week, I like it. It’s good for me because most of the week I am by myself at the office while I’m working and other than the clients I work with there isn’t much accountability.
This rinse and repeat process has really helped me mature and measure where I’m really at in life so I can measure up to the progress of how much closer I’m getting to my goals. Again, I realize not everyone is goal oriented but I think it’s important in life to have some aspirations. I definitely get depressed when I feel like I’m not progressing or at least moving towards something, business or personal life.
A lot of new businesses that I come across I’ve learned that they don’t really have many processes for themselves. I mean some do and it’s refreshing to meet motivated individuals but on a practical level for business a lot of clients don’t have a sales strategy or a functionable process to accomplish their goals. I’m not talking about simple stuff like a business name and how much money they want to make, I’m literally talking about putting together a strategy of effectiveness of internal processes as well as external towards their prospects and customers.
I see this recurring pattern a lot: A small business owner starts making money, they run out of time to do tedious tasks, which is where my company comes in, and they get stuck or die off. I was working with a company back in 2015 where they were featured on ABC, Forbes, and Amazon.com as one of the up-and-coming companies that year and had a flagship product that was top 25 products to buy for men during Christmas. But after year two of working with them I had the conversation with the owner that they simply ran out of money and had to stop working with my company.
At first it’s disheartening to have these conversations of getting let go but before that happens I always ask what I could have done better to maintain business with them. With this instance it wasn’t me it was that they didn’t have a strategy with hiring people and were spending too much money with employees. All of that could have been fixed if before they started their business had all of these strategies and processes put into place so that when the massive growth happened, they knew the right decision to make and maintain.
The lesson I learned through that experience is to have a game plan, set up processes with objectives and measure the output. In that way you are able to make micro adjustments and can continue pursuing goals and dreams. I feel like today business is sustaining itself because there is a business plan and a strategy put into place. It starts with having my personal life in order: mastering and crafting the smaller things, maturing through those experiences and rolling that over into my own business. It shows to my clients and prospects that I am continually improving, provides value to their company, and the bar is continually being raised because we keep hitting new milestones.
My thirty minutes is coming to a close and to end on a positive note, The Struggle is all about learning lessons through experiences and I hope that as you read through these short snippets you too can implement some strategies into your life and accomplish the goals you want to achieve. I believe everyone deserves and is capable of having a good life, living prosperous through their profession or whatever it is that is desired and that desire is fulfilled. If you want to read other snippets you can subscribe to my email or follow the company social media on Instagram @handshakesnhugz as where I share updates. If you want to read the previous article visit our website at H2digital.co or click the link here. Thank you again for reading and I hope you have a wonderful day!