The unconscious bias of being a solopreneur
I'm not gonna lie - I've thought about quitting several times.
It was around three years ago, that I found myself bored out of my mind, sitting in an exam hall supervising 300 students taking their maths exam. I was living in a new country and had gotten a job in education. At first, what gave me flexibility as a parent was now stifling me.
Having previously worked as a freelance marketing consultant I reached out to a few, non-profits, offering to help them with their communication strategies, and found myself scribbling ideas during my breaks, getting excited to see their progress and celebrate their successes. I knew this was my passion project.
When I first started my solopreneur journey I had all these high hopes. I was feeling pretty smug, I had run large conferences, organized political dinners, written press copies for international magazines, and helped a company get to six figures in 2 months. I imagined clients flocking to me.
I set up my website; sent cold emails; posted on social media and waited.
Most people who are trying to do something new, overcomplicate it. You may feel like you are working hard when in reality you're just spinning your wheels. Looking back, the problem should have been obvious - I didn't have a system or a strategy.
The few responses I received would ask me to "change my services" or "if I could work for free." Creating from scratch is brutal - no matter what your skills are.
Weeks went by with no progress.
Trying to find a solution, I desperately began to consume every "Social Media Hack", every Copywriting tip - How to improve my profile, how to go viral, how to write a hook.
I listened to people I thought knew more than me and with every "shiny object" I would go back and forth, changing my website, re-writing, and posting, and there would still be crickets.
I set myself a deadline, if there weren't any results after 3 months I would return to my 9-5.
It was my brother, Kevin, who told me to always introduce myself before anyone else had the chance to - that way I got to define how I wanted to be remembered. To prove his point on my first day at university, he knocked on every door in my dorm and made me stand there and introduce myself to everyone!
Define and Control Your Narrative: When it comes to your business you need to get clear on What you want to be known for, Who you help, and Why.
You don’t need to be another version of someone else. Just be the best version of yourself. Define your business to differentiate your business.
I spent the next 2 months working on what I wanted to be known for - Strategic Storytelling
Get the Right Attention
Rather than trying to convince everyone, I changed my message from selling and telling to helping and sharing and focused on that 1 person who needed my help, mirroring my content to their inner voice.
From one post I got over twenty replies asking for more details and booked out a month of discovery chats. And then there was my first client, who asked to work with me on our second contact.
Action is the best teacher
It's hard trying to figure it out on your own but the answers to your questions as a solopreneur such as, "How do I start a business?" "How do I grow on social media?" - are only answered by you taking action.