In case you’re interested, here’s my personal 2014 recap and 2015 goals. I don’t expect this to be very actionable or helpful to you, except perhaps as a case study.
That’s why I also published a separate article today called What Got Your Here Won’t Get You There. I wrote it to help you do your turn-of-the-year “gut check”. Hopefully the strategies in that post will help you crush your goals in 2015.
But this post here is really for me to look back on a year from now. It’s also a way to add some public pressure on myself, in hopes that I won’t have to write an embarrassing 2015 recap a year from now!
OK I admit… It’s also a lame excuse to share a pic of my lovely newborn daughter.
“The highlight of the year” would be an understatement. Emma completely lit up our world this year and it’s been an absolute thrill being a new Dad.
We didn’t get to do as much travel as we usually do this year (I wonder why?), but we did manage to pack the baby and the dog in the car and head up to Bar Harbor, Maine to eat some lobster and hike around beautiful Acadia National Park.
January 2014 was our first annual Big Snow Tiny Conf getaway, organized by Brad Tousnard and myself. It’s a 4-day trip to Sugarbush, VT where a bunch of web business owners get together to hit the slopes and talk shop.
Except for the fact that 3 of our registered attendees couldn’t make it because a winter storm cancelled their flights 🙁 the trip was a success. It was awesome to meet and hang with new friends and have what felt like a 3-day mastermind session. Getting back on the snowboard is always fun, except it was below 0 degrees that week, which put a cold damper on that part of the trip.
This year, we’re all booked up for Big Snow Tiny Conf ’15! 12 registered attendees this year. Bigger house. Let’s hope the weather abides.
This has been an ongoing struggle, and 2014 was no different. I’ve never been terribly unhealthy or overweight, but I’ve never had consistently healthy eating and exercise habits. 2014 was a year of fits and starts in this area. BUT, starting this December I picked up The Bulletproof Diet book and I feel better than I ever have (and I’m only 1 week in!). So I think I’m onto something…
Somewhat of a mixed bag, but overall I feel good with where things ended up this year. These are goals quoted straight from my business journal from earlier in the year. Let’s see how I did…
“Hire key people and focus on processes, and removing the “busy work” from my daily schedule. Within 6 months, my role should dramatically change from what it is today.”
“Restaurant Engine on autopilot and growing 3x faster than it is today.”
“Build a marketing funnel for my first ebook, Design For Conversions.”
“Write & release a 2nd eBook”
Up until now, we do profitably acquire customers mainly from organic channels (content, word-of-mouth, search). The problem is this isn’t very measurable, and I learned I can’t simply double-down on what has worked if we want to significantly grow faster.
So my first big project in 2015 is to build an additional sales funnel that is profitable, measurable, and scalable. This will take my full hands-on attention during the first 3-6 months of 2015. You’ll hear me talk about progress on this front on the podcast and probably in articles here.
Measurable target: Double monthly recurring revenue
Once we have our new customer acquisition channels dialed in, the next step will be to remove myself (again) from the process. I’ve already removed myself from the service tasks and our content marketing efforts. Now it’s “rinse and repeat” as I work to add new processes.
In 2014 I made RE run on autopilot. In 2015, the goal is for it to grow on autopilot.
Measurable target: Maintain increased growth rate without my direct input.
I’ve already received plenty of great feedback/testimonials from students who got started with the course material, however too early to see any longterm results. In 2015, I want to see meaningful transformations in my students’ businesses. I’ll be doing everything I can to support this: Dropping into our private community daily, doing coaching calls and check-ins, and updating the course with additional material.
Based on the ongoing feedback I’m getting, I’m already brainstorming a “Productize 2.0” update sometime in 2015. This will likely include a new batch of lessons and a monthly coaching option.
Measurable target: Document 5 detailed case studies
My writing and my free Productize crash course already does an OK job of driving ongoing sales. In 2015, I’m aiming to improve the crash course (go video) and develop a routine of live workshops.
I recently did one partnership workshop, which was a big win and I’ll be looking to line up a couple of joint workshops with select folks who have similar audiences to mine.
Measurable target: Avg. monthly revenue: $5k / Total revenue from Productize for 2015: $50k
Today, approx 75% of my time is spent working on RE/HP. The remaining 25% is spent here, talking to you. It will remain that way during the first half of 2015 while I’m working on marketing and other new initiatives there.
But by the end of the year, I want that balance to reverse. RE/HP should be growing and automated so I can spend most of my time here, serving you 🙂
What I mean by “serving you” is everything I do for this audience (you): Write this blog and my newsletter, record the Bootstrapped Web podcast, create free courses and webinars, teach the Productize course. Whatever I do “next” will be for you. I don’t know when or what that will be, but I do know who it will serve.
Measurable target: Harder to measure, but here’s one indicator: I’d like to move to a consistent weekly newsletter (I currently send mine approx every 2 weeks).
There are two basic improvements I want to make in the way I approach work:
As I wrote about in today’s post, I feel I’ve been avoiding that next “entrepreneurial moment”. In 2015, I need to fire this back up and take a leap. Not in terms of launching something new, but in terms of pushing growth hard.
I need to do things that will make me uncomfortable and break me out of business-as-usual habits.
I feel I’ve done a good job of seeking feedback from audience, which has paid off really well.
But I can do a better job of asking for and processing private feedback from peers. My mastermind groups serve as a solid support team. But I’d like to reach out to others, especially those who are farther along than I am, and those who have a different business experience than I do.
The hard part is I fully understand how business these people are, which is why I tend to shy away from asking for feedback. I’ll need to navigate this carefully and figure out what works.
So in a nutshell, by this time next year RE/HP should be doubled and growing faster, I’ll continue to teach the grow the Productize course, and I’ll be able to dedicate even more of my focus to serving you, my newsletter subscribers.
See you in January!