I don’t know about you, but when people ask/invite/pitch me, it’s tough to say no — sadly, even when there’s little to no cash involved! As you get more traction around your site, more opportunities will come along, but that doesn’t mean that figuring out which invitations or opportunities to accept and which ones to politely decline gets any easier.
What has really helped me and my partner in crime over at My Mommy Manual was going through the process of defining who we wanted to be, what we wanted our site to be. In other words, having a plan!
Yikes! I know, I know… “Develop a business plan” is the last thing you wanted to hear. There was a reason you left the corporate world and stopped shopping at Ann Taylor.
You’re a creative entrepreneur. You want this endeavor to fuel your creativity, not stuff it in a 9×12 3-ring binder! You want this to be FUN! The bad news for you (if you are business plan-phobic) is that it’s just sound advice. Sorry.
But the good news is that it can be fun. Really. Really.
After all, the definition of business plan is: a detailed plan setting out the objectives of a business, the strategy and tactics planned to achieve them, and the expected profits, usually over a period of three to ten years.
What it is not is “a Microsoft Word document with pages of spreadsheets that takes weeks to put together and is obsolete tomorrow.”
The invaluable part is the process of actually thinking about, articulating, and saying/writing out loud what it is you intend to create. When you say it like that… it sounds more fun doesn’t it? Even maybe a little magical.
I’ve been a fan of Jennifer Lee’s Right Brain Business Plan for a long time (no affiliation). And I have to tell you that for my own digital publishing career, my plan has been much more in line with this approach than with the Word/Excel approach… but Jennifer does a much better job than I could on giving you the how.
Stay tuned if you want details though… I’m happy to share my own adventures in unconventional (and fun) planning!
photo credit: stock xchng