At the end of 2022 I dove DEEP into my values as a person and as a company, so that I could ascertain my guiding light as I continue to build Wandersoul Co as a web development studio AND as I continue to build my own personal brand.
Want to read more about what came up as I explored what drives me? Check out the latest blog – it has Wandersoul updates and a refresher on all the places you can find me online.
Whether you read the blog post or not, I want you to know that one of the biggest driving factors for me, in life and in business, is paying it forward – sharing the knowledge I’ve gained and the lessons I’ve learned so the next person might not have it as difficult as I did – in regards to building a business, but also in regards to building a successful, fulfilling life.
In light of that value, I’m going to be getting a lot more transparent about my business – the tools I use, what’s working and what’s not, my goals, and so much more.
With that in mind, I’d love to share a “Wandersoul Wrapped” of 2022 – what went right, what went wrong, where I spent my time, and how I’m making predictions and goals for the new year.
What Went Right
- Going all in on WordPress website development. At the beginning of 2022 I vowed to stop being a generalist and it made a world of difference in terms of my happiness with the types of projects I got to work on.
- Creating email newsletter content consistently. Wins all around. I don’t have to tell you any more about this!
- My inspiration bank. I keep an inspiration bank in Google Keep of notes, potential content ideas, and so much more. This has been a total game changer in how I find (and remember) content to share with you.
- Recurring revenue. Even during the months when I didn’t have any big projects come in, a couple thousand rolled in between consulting clients and website maintenance and it always got me through until the next big paycheck. I’m definitely going to be increasing my recurring revenue streamings in 2023!
- The mini mastermind me and my local friends have unintentionally created. When I first messaged Mallory Musante (the amazing marketing expert) to meet for a beer in late 2021, I had no idea how great of friends we would become, or the business support her and Amber Share would bring to the table. We’ve got a healthy balance of business/pleasure where we meet for lunch, run errands, buy plants, and connect over all our mutual musings. I can’t recommend IRL business friends highly enough.
- Finding clients by answering questions in Facebook Groups. This is one of the best ways that I have continued to generate leads. The biggest problem with this tactic is it requires me to literally show up and scroll Facebook looking for questions to answer, but every time I thought business was in a slump, I found another client by spending a few hours on Facebook.
- Taking time off. I didn’t look at a calendar but I took WEEKS off in 2022. Here’s to more of that in 2023 🍻
Things That Were Neutral
- Design Days. As much as I wanted to love Design Days, they became untenable when I learned how much really goes into building a high-performing WordPress website. It just isn’t possible to everything needed to create a website in one day. That’s not to say I didn’t have successful Design Days, because I did, but it does mean I’ll be changing up exactly how these play out in 2023 so that they can be even more successful from all sides!
- Meeting my income goal. At the beginning of 2022 I refused to set a “scary enough” income goal, and likely sold myself short because of it. I also didn’t think strategically about what would get me to that income goal, so I didn’t have a clear path to follow or a way to get back on track when things weren’t going as I’d hope. Trust that in 2023 my path will be guided by a real plan, not by the whims of hope.
What Went Wrong
- White label relationships with brand designers. This was not an epic fail, but it was a SERIOUS learning experience. Brand designers seem like the perfect referral partners, but I ran into more than one who wanted me to act as an employee on their behalf, instead of a web development partner. I wanted so badly for this to work, and I did have a few successful projects and partnerships, but overall this wasn’t the big win I was hoping it would be.
- Social media content creation. The more I think about and know about social media, the less I want to be on there. Creating my own content sucks the life out of me, and while I will continue to show up on IG and FB this year, it’s going to be in much more intentional ways.
- Signing up for an all-girls retreat. Just, never again. I’m not saying I don’t want to hang out with women, or that I think all-women’s retreats are inherently bad. I am saying that the next time I go on a retreat, it’ll probably be alone in a cabin in the woods with my dog – not a social event in Palm Springs that drains me of my energy and doesn’t result in real, actionable change for my business.
Looking Forward to 2023
- AI is going to play a bigger part in our every day life, and it’s proper usage is going to get way more complicated in 2023.
- It’s going to take even more to stand out in a saturated market (web development, or otherwise) – and knowing what makes you different is going to be more important than ever.
- The power of video will continue to grow, and it will be more important than ever to know how to show up effectively across video platforms (Youtube, Reels, TikTok, etc)
- Grow my income by 66% – to $180k. That’s gross profit – not cash in hand. Obviously 66% is a substantial jump, but this year I’m going to tap into a. appropriate project planning so that I’m meeting my goals and not just taking on whatever comes my way and b. passive income, ’nuff said.
- Selling confidently, to my email list (that’s you!) and beyond. If you’ve ever met me, you know I’m confident as a person – but there are still things that scare me and that make me feel some kinda way. Selling is still one of them – but with nearly 3 years in business for myself, and a background in luxury client experience, and a degree from a top-notch college, I’m not going to be afraid of confidently selling in 2023. My services help you build a better, more profitable business, and that’s the energy I’m bringing to 2023.
- Leaning into my role as an Elementor Educator. I’m ready to fill the void I see in the marketplace for designers, developers and small business owners who need to learn the basics of building a high-performing WordPress website with one of the best tools out there – Elementor (Pro). Be on the look out for new ways to engage with me in the Elementor space coming soon.
Overall 2022 gets an 8/10 – would do again, but I’d rather keep on plugging along into the future!