Dealing with the Pressure

So busy lately.

I feel like my startup is in crunch mode.

New accounts, keeping the ones that are still a fit, people joining the team, and steadily building momentum.

But the pressure to deliver builds.

The growth is good, but anything can happen. No time to rest. One piece could be moved and threaten to topple what has been built.

So, I keep my head down. Focused on what’s in front of me. Even if that means you don’t hear from me as much for a while or I share with you at odd times.

We’ve reached a critical phase in our first year and we’re determined to prove ourselves and win respect in the market.

Where are you in your career or business? What steps are you taking to continue your personal or professional growth?

Please let me know in the comments!

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Entrepreneurs Need to Roll with the Punches

Funny how entrepreneurship has become so glamorized in the media and popular culture. Being your “own boss” definitely sounds pretty cool and it is, but don’t think you have no one to answer to.

Ever been yelled at by someone you don’t even know for something you didn’t even do, and still apologized? I would be very surprised if you haven’t. Guess what? It happens to everyone in the business world.

Your boss probably gets screamed at more than you do. We all have to suck it up and “eat it” now and then. Responding with emotion can cost you dearly.

When you have your own business, all the responsibilities fall on your shoulders. You have to deal with a lot more punches 🥊 and you can’t blame anyone but yourself.

Sure, you can defend yourself when prudent. You don’t have to be a doormat. But, know that in a certain sense, it’s always your fault. You’re always accountable, especially if you’re in a business serving clients.

All of this keeps you humble and on your toes. Use it to grow and become better.

Social Media and Content Marketing Is Not A Quick-Fix Solution

What is the ROI of content marketing and social media? How quickly will it take to start generating leads or sales for my new business?

This is an important subject that frequently comes up and one that I want to address and unpack over a series of posts.

Content marketing and organic social media marketing help a business establish a brand. Branding is the purest form of marketing. And, it’s a long-term investment. You’re putting out value and creating a community of interested followers with the hopes that eventually, you won’t have to do as much selling.

Instead, your audience will come to you.

It will cost less to acquire new customers and strengthen the loyalty of current customers. This usually corresponds to the “top of the funnel” brand awareness and engagement. Or, as marketing nerds call it: “First touch attribution.”

The one caveat is that it takes time to get people to know about, care about, and trust you. It often takes a number of interactions over a period of time before people will pay attention and remember you. The results are cumulative. If you’re a new startup or small business, it’s a good investment to make. But, you also need short-term ca$h flow.

Business is Business, but It Still Gets Personal

Business is business, but don’t think for a second that it’s never personal. ❤️

Entrepreneurship is a deeply personal game. It will force you to get more in touch with who you are and face all that you are in an open, vulnerable, honest and often uncomfortable way.

Sure, you’ve got to spend most of your time quantitatively on keeping your clients and customers happy, especially in the beginning.

Don’t get distracted with fantasies of exits or things you’re going to buy someday or ideas for second and third businesses. There is time for that, but there are urgent and important matters at hand right now.

Still, if you don’t make time to dream. 💭 To fantasize just a little. To step back, dig deep, soul search, and maintain perspective on what matters to you in life, you’ll never be able to truly reach your potential and withstand the challenges, which come with being an entrepreneur.

Don’t Break Yourself: Replenish Now and Then

Dear reader,

I want to preface this blog post with a sincere apology to the most loyal readers of my WordPress blog for not having posted here in a month. I see your likes and I greatly appreciate all of your support!!

Would love if you dropped me a comment now and then. I’m happy to engage and get to know one another. 

By the way, if you’d like to see content from me more frequently, I’m active on LinkedIn and post several times a week. You can find me here: LinkedIn.com/ZevGotkin. Also, active on the ‘gram. Follow me on Instagram: @zevg1. I post stories documenting my life and business journey every day. 

Now, without further ado, on to today’s blog post! 🙂

Had an awful migraine a few weeks ago. 🤦‍♂️

What a powerful reminder that all the work and motivation we have for our careers quickly falls by the wayside when we’re not feeling well. Health is something not to be taken for granted!

It’s hot out there today. Make sure to stay hydrated! 💦 If you get sick and you can’t work, all that hustle will be for naught. Remember to periodically step back, regroup, and refuel.

Push hard, but don’t break yourself. That simply doesn’t help you or the people you serve. 💪

 

Entrepreneurs: Don’t Forget to Dream

It’s starting to dawn on me. 🌅

If I want ZEV Media to be successful — no, if I want to be successful — then I need a North Star. ⭐️

Normally, I don’t like to get too “Zen” 🧘‍♂️ or philosophical, but I realize now that I need a clearer picture of my what I want. I must pursue dreams far greater than the sum of my business goals. 🥅

I’ve heard it said that if your motivation is money, you’ll make a little money. But if your motivation is something greater than money, you’ll probably get a whole lot more. 💰

My primary motivation is not big money. I’m driven by the idea of building something greater than myself that impacts others positively and allows me to live life on my own terms. 💪

I’m more motivated by freedom than I am by money. 🇺🇸

However, even that is not enough. While this may sound crazy, I think that simply wanting my business to grow and succeed is still thinking too small. 🤔

No, it’s time to reach for the stars. ☁️ ✨ Beyond the stars actually, and to get back in touch with my greater purpose and overall vision of the life I want to lead and the legacy I wish to leave behind.

It’s time for higher level thinking. Often, we #entrepreneurs get so wrapped up in the day-to-day — the meetings, the calls 📱 , the deadlines, the sales, the clients/customers, that we forget to pause, step back, and look at the bigger picture.

Business is business, but don’t think for a second that it’s never personal. ❤️

Entrepreneurship is a deeply personal game. It will force you to get more in touch with who you are and face yourself in an open, vulnerable, honest and often uncomfortable way.

Sure, you’ve got to spend most of your time quantitatively on keeping your clients and customers happy, especially in the beginning.

Don’t get distracted with fantasies of exits or things you’re going to buy some day or ideas for second and third businesses. There is time for that, but there are urgent and important matters at hand right now.

Still, make time to dream. 💭 To fantasize just a little. To step back, dig deep, soul search, and maintain perspective on what matters to you in life. I don’t have all the answers, but I believe doing this now and then will help you truly reach your potential and make you an even better #entrepreneur. ☕️

 

How Do You Do Social Media Marketing for a Boring Business?

What do you do when your business or your client doesn’t have a “story” or anything interesting to share on their blog or social media?

“We sell garbage bags. What are we supposed to talk about?” “Nothing exciting happens here.”

Sure, you understand that stories sell. But, how do you story-tell when you’re in a “boring” business? How do you turn people on when your business isn’t sexy? 💋

My advice:

Go beyond WHAT you do when creating content on social. When coming up with content to share on social media, dig deeper into your WHY — the reason you exist, the problems you solve, and the role you fulfill in the lives of others. 🤔

And, then expand beyond what it is you do for a living. Because the truth is we’re all short on time and attention spans. Your target audience doesn’t want to hear only about you, your industry, or what you do.

They’re interested in themselves and the things they care about.

So, when crafting content, you don’t have to make it all about your business, product, or service.

In fact, you should focus primarily on what will educate, inspire, or entertain the audience. That will give you the attention equity you need before you can ever hope to generate a lead or make a sale. 🌈

It can be as simple as sharing an article about something relevant to your audience and featuring your take on it in the caption.

It might be simple tips, pieces of advice, or short funny clips that relate to your audience’s pain points. 🎥

Your blog, social pages, vlog, or podcast can be the trade journal, TV show, or radio show of your industry. 📺

Regarding the example above, you can feature content that highlights neighborhood heroes who are cleaning up their communities.

Think outside the box and have some fun with it! 😀