In this episode I delve into crucial insights on how to avoid the top four mistakes that could hinder your success in the upcoming year. For each mistake, I’m going to break down what you SHOULD do instead. These key insights and strategies are going to help you have the most successful 2024 possible. 


Through my personal real-world examples and practical (and actionable) advice, this episode equips you with the tools you need to navigate the complexities of marketing so that you have a clear understanding of what it takes to grow your business. 


Whether you’re a seasoned business owner or just starting out, this episode will help you level-up your next 12 months. Listen now!


Key Points: 

  • Goal Clarity and Focus:
      • How to set clear revenue and micro goals for your business and a breakdown of what happens if you don’t stay clear and focused.
      • How to create a process that keeps you on track
      • What causes business owners to get overwhelmed and paralyzed
      • What is required for sustained progress & growth
  • Prioritizing Relationships & Connection:
      • Strategies to integrate that will build connection in your marketing strategy
      • Why understanding your target audience is a commitment and how to shift as they evolve
      • How to elevate your content in a way that deepens your audiences connection & relationship with you/your business
  • Taking Bold Action & Investment:
      • How to overcome the fear of failure and what it looks like to step out of your comfort zone wisely as a business owner
      • How to approach your business if you want to increase your revenue
      • Why it makes sense to trust your intuition when making decisive moves
  • Embracing Imperfection and the Growth Journey
    • Understanding what the ultimate goal is and how to step out of the restrictions you’ve put on yourself
    • What decisive actions you should take to overcome setbacks & challenges
    • How to seamlessly evolve your business strategy without force so you can hit your end goal


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Emily Hirsh:


Hello, my friends. Welcome back to the podcast. I am almost ready to fully unplug for the Christmas holiday, and usually, the last week of the year, I barely work. Typically, my nanny is off. She’s not off the whole week, but typically, she’s off, and I just do some extra stuff with the kids and just chill. But we also, for the last two years, we’ve done vision boards, which is really fun. My kids and I do vision boards, and they set little goals for the year, and I do my planning. So that is what I will be doing next week, and it’s a special time. It’s good energy, right? Before the end of the year going into a new year I always love the opportunity to reflect. I actually spend a lot of December just kind of sitting in reflection and dreaming about the next year, so that is what I will be doing this week, and I thought it would be fun to pull in—I taught these mistakes a couple of weeks back when I did my 2-day marketing workshop on creating your 2024 marketing strategy, and they’re just honestly really good and really powerful to talk about – the 4 biggest things to avoid when looking at your next year’s strategy.


Honestly, a couple of them are very common things that I’ll talk about, and then a couple of them aren’t. So we’re going to dive into those. So the first mistake, the first thing, is to not allow yourself to lose focus. And I think one of the biggest reasons why somebody doesn’t achieve their goals in a year or make a lot of progress in a year and see growth around lead generation and sales is because they’re not even clear. And it sounds so simple but I know this is true because when I, for example, did my workshop, everybody got the most value out of just the format that creates clarity in what you should even be working on because the reality is with marketing there’s just so many things you could always be working on, so many platforms, so many ideas, so many strategies, so many must-dos. And that ultimately creates paralysis. So the first thing is to get super clear on what your goals are. What is your revenue goal? What are your other little goals that are going to back that goal? Are you going to launch a podcast? Are you going to sell a certain amount of your offer or service, like what’s the target that we’re shooting for next year? And are you super clear on that? And then bringing it down 1 more level. What are the actions that are going to be required to accomplish those goals? And making sure that throughout the year because it’s easy like January, February to stay focused. 


The first quarter, you’ve got focus. You can create a plan that’s kind of easier, but then that’s where a lot of people start to fall off because either something isn’t working yet, and they get frustrated or they get confused, or they get sidetracked, or they have shiny object syndrome, or something happens. That makes them lose focus, and that’s where then the overall annual progress really loses its momentum. So going into this new year, what I would recommend that you do is, first of all, have a clear scorecard. What is the scorecard? Where are you headed? What are your goals for numbers? I always tell people with your goals, you should be able to look back at the end of the year and say yes, I did that or no, I didn’t, and it’s a different topic to say what happens if you didn’t accomplish them, but they should be very clear. Then what are the actions that are going to move you towards those goals? So those are the 2 biggest things, and then create a process, whatever works for you that next year you have in your calendar or already determined like times that you’re gonna come back and you’re gonna look at these goals, and you’re gonna ask yourself am I taking the actions that are gonna move me towards these goals? And the 1 thing to note here that’s a nuance with focus is you need to stay focused. You can’t let yourself get derailed by shining objects or somebody saying if you do this like that is the path to success. That’s a huge red flag if you hear someone say that.


If something doesn’t work and you see firsthand that it’s not working and you’re like tried that, gave it my 100, it’s just not feeling exactly right or working right now and so therefore I need to pivot. That’s a different story like you don’t want to stay so rigid in a plan that you lose sight of the outcomes. This is something I have had to actually train team members on because it’s very easy to look at a to-do list, especially in marketing. It’s very easy to look at a to-do list and be like well, we crossed off every item on the to-do list, but it’s harder to take a step back and say well, based on the outcome, we’re trying to achieve, is there something different? We should be doing, is there something we should shift and change? So what I typically recommend is having your full goals plan for the year, revenue-specific smaller micro-goals around like offers. You’re going to sell new offers, you might launch content, you might launch, etc., and then go really deep with a ninety-day plan, and from there look at okay, in this ninety days I’m going to go execute this plan, and I’m going to give myself time to reflect back on this ninety-day plan and figure out what’s working and what’s not working and from there I will judge the next ninety days. So it is this fine line. 


It’s creating harmony between focus and adaptability, that is very very important. The next thing to really focus on is making sure that you don’t get so rigid in a template or executing a marketing strategy that you forget about relationships and connection. So prioritizing relationships and connection in everything you do from your organic content, social media ads, funnel strategy, webinar, website. All of it. Everything you do. Is to increase your connection to your audience, your leads, and your potential customers and really remembering that when you boil it down marketing is simple. It’s about attracting people who are sitting on the other side of that screen just like you living their everyday lives and. They have a problem and they have a desire that you can address or you can solve their problem. So your only job in your marketing, which is not necessarily an easy thing, but it is simple, is to create an incredible experience that builds their trust and brings them to the place where they’re like I need. What you sell, and this comes from first of all committing to having the connection with your ideal customer, understanding, committing to having a deep understanding of what they’re experiencing, of what they’re feeling, of what they’re saying.


And if you don’t have that connection, asking yourself. How can I create it? And then the next thing is bringing that into your marketing strategy and looking at okay, in my, you know, content portion of my strategy. What is something creative or just taking it to the next level of depth that I could do in order to create more connection and build relationships? That should be the foundation of your strategy next year. The third mistake is playing too small. This is what I said a  couple of weeks ago in the workshop. Don’t create this plan and then set these goals and then not take action and put yourself out there. I know that it is scary to invest in your business. It is scary to release content. It is scary to take the next action and the next step forward. That is a normal thing. You’re not an anomaly if you feel that. One of the number 1 reasons for my success and you guys if you look closely, you’ll see this in real time. I get an idea, I set a goal and then I just take action. And you don’t always see the things that don’t work on the front end, but you are seeing me try a bunch of things and then it comes to fruition every single time, and that is the biggest asset that you can have in order to make progress.


And the other piece is honestly like investing and committing your time and your money and resources—time, energy, and money—into your business. This won’t be relevant for everybody, but I do see especially in the online space a lot of entrepreneurs, especially moms treat their business as if it’s a hobby. If you want your business to be a hobby, that’s 1 thing. But if you want it to be a legit business and you have a vision for it to be a legit business you have to start treating it that way. That means the time that you put into it needs to be intentional, not on the side when I have time I’ll get to it, and everything else takes priority over it. But it’s like no, I’m doing this. Same with the investment like understanding and betting on yourself. Sometimes believing in yourself as entrepreneurs we are the only ones who believe in ourselves in those moments, and I’ve been there many times where even like my husband, it’s not that he didn’t believe in me, he didn’t get it, right? No. I know that this is the right next step and I’m going to make this decision because it’s my decision to make, it’s my business right? So I know that it can be scary to put yourself out there, invest in your business, your marketing, getting help, and all these things when you have this fear of failure.


And wondering like can I really do this do I deserve to do this what if it doesn’t work. What I told people on the training is if you are feeling that fear of failure and some people when they set their goal. They actually were like felt scared. They’re like well if I set this goal and then I don’t make it then I failed. And I said no if you set this goal and you did everything you possibly could to make this goal come true. You didn’t fail like the only way you can fail is stop taking action. Honestly, if you set the goal. And you do everything you possibly can to make that goal become reality. You didn’t fail. You learned what you needed to learn to be able to get to that goal, and so also what I told people is if you are afraid to do something like you’re afraid to make an investment or you’re afraid to hire help. Or you are afraid to release a podcast sitting with the thought of what is the absolute worst-case scenario thing that’s going to happen not saying that that’s going to happen, but sitting with what is the worst thing that’s going to happen and actually like playing that out. And then asking yourself if that were to happen would I still be okay, most of the time the answer is yes so if you have something that you know is right for your business and is right and needed for you to hit your goals next year like you’re like I know I need to invest in paid ads or I know I want to hire this coaching support or I want to go to this retreat or whatever it is and only you can know if it’s the right decision. 


Nobody can tell you if it’s the right decision, but you guys know what I’m talking about when you make a decision. And you say no to something because of fear versus knowing I know it’s at the right time or I know this is not the right thing. You don’t want to be saying no when it’s like I know that this is the right thing and I’m gonna say no because I’m too scared. Okay, so when you have those moments play out worst-case scenario this is what happens. And then ask yourself if that happened would I still be okay and I’ve done this many times I have invested I actually went back I calculated this year between the retreats that I have attended and signed up for the mastermind I’m in the coaching I paid for um and then the like. Somatic therapy and breathwork coaching I’ve done I’ve invested almost $100000 this year in that growth and combined I mean I can’t even put a number on what it’s paid because my happiness and peace like I don’t have a number for that. But my business has grown tremendously and. As I watch all of these other agencies do layoffs. We’re growing. We’re hiring right? and that’s because I invested in myself I listened to my intuition on what the right decisions were and I didn’t play small and also.

If I messed up and I am like oh you know that didn’t work out how I wanted I just moved forward and it definitely is easier said than done. 


But if you can sit with the worst-case scenario and know I’ll be okay I’ll just get back up I’ll keep going and I’ll learn from it. And and then you take that action like you will be so much farther ahead of everybody else like everybody feels the fear. Everybody has the fear of failure. Everybody has the fear of like what if I release this and nobody watches it what if I post this and nobody likes it what if I launch this offer and nobody buys it what if I sign up for this thing and I don’t make my money back. But if I get this help and it doesn’t convert what if I spend money on paid ads and they don’t work. Everybody has the fear. The difference is not having or not having that fear. The difference is what you do with that fear and do you let it stop you from taking action or do you say? thank you I got you like thank you brain because I know you’re just looking out for me and that’s why you play the worst-case scenarios in my head in the fear but I know this is the right decision and therefore I still am going to move forward and I’m willing to do that to learn and to get back up when something doesn’t work. So don’t play small like if you look at the business you want to have next year and you look at the CEO you need to be to have that business, the only way you’re going to make that business a reality is to start acting like that CEO, start making decisions like that CEO. I tell myself this all the time like when I’m in a situation and I respond a certain way or make a decision a certain way I ask myself “is that the CEO of my 8 figure company, is that what she would do” and if it’s a no I have to re-adjust.


Okay, the last mistake is not trying to accomplish perfection, not making perfection the goal, understanding that perfection with your marketing and with your strategy is not the goal. Like we all want this perfect plan that is like, “If I create this strategy and I just run through the to-do list that goes with this strategy, it’s going to work. It’s going to work out the gate. There’s going to be no issues. No roadblocks—nothing.” That just isn’t reality. It is going to take some grit. Sometimes it’s going to take doing something that might make you uncomfortable. It’s going to take probably a money investment, but for sure a time investment—some sort of investment in the growth. And it’s absolutely going to have successful parts to it and parts that didn’t work, right? And so if you look at next year and you then go into the year and you’re so rigid with how you act, or you’re trying to achieve this level of perfection and not understanding that things not working is how you get to the next level by continuing to take action—that is the game. I realized this a lot this year for myself.


Not in the sense of marketing but in the sense more of my business as a whole. I realized, “Wow, I was trying to constantly achieve this level of perfection where it’s like we had everybody hired that we need, every process was perfect, was running really smooth, like we’re hitting all our marketing goals. Everything’s working.” That doesn’t exist, and sometimes I would let myself say, “Oh, once that happens, like then I will, fill in the blank, make sure I do this habit, have the present time with my kids.” And it wasn’t until mid to later this year that I was like, “Okay, no, I have this backward. No matter what, when things are not working, when shit hits the fan, my job is to remain unwavering and grounded no matter what. And if I can do that, now I have the capacity to handle what’s next.” So understanding with your business and your marketing and going after the strategy that you’re creating, perfection is not the goal. Having it all work with zero hiccups and challenges is not reality. So go into it expecting those to happen and understanding that those are actually part of the journey to getting you to the goal.


Sometimes we set a goal for ourselves, and we may think we know how we’re going to get there, but it’s not always accurate. Like the actual in-between of A to Z doesn’t matter if you are clear on Z and you start on A, and you know maybe like B, C, and D, then you can start taking action. And as you go and implement B, C, and D, like the next ones will become clear, right? And eventually, you’ll get to Z, but you don’t really know the in-between because you have to do B, C, D before you can go to the next one. I don’t know if that was a good analogy, but that has for sure been my experience with my business growth, and I think I’ve shared this on the podcast, at least shared it in the workshop. You know, when I look at all of my years in business, things that I’m doing in August, September, October, November, December, like I didn’t plan those in January. They still align with my big goal, my big revenue goal, and what I’m trying to achieve, but they unfolded as the year went on. They unfolded as things worked and didn’t work, and I got feedback and I got inspiration and I grew myself and all of those things. So understanding that perfection is not the goal and being committed to the journey, and matter what, that’s the fourth one, all right, you guys? Well, I hope that you found these helpful. I am very excited for 2024. 


I think it’s going to be a great year. It is going to be a great year. Not, I think, it is going to be a great year, and it’s going to be a year of fun and some new things, as always. I think that it will continue on this path where authenticity, connection, and depth in your marketing and your business are so rewarded. And I think, as always, there will be new opportunities. But I think people, as a collective, are really craving connection and trying and starting to do things differently. And so I think that the businesses and the entrepreneurs who look at their business and say, “Okay, how could I get creative? How could I do something different? How could I connect more?” like challenging themselves to step into that will do really well. So there’s a little extra prediction for you guys, all right? Talk to you next time.