These days the internet is full of experts and yes, I have to admit that if I want to find out how to do something (find a recipe, train a dog, lose weight) then more often than not, I turn to my friend Google.
When it comes to business advice, it’s just the same.
Whether you want advice on email marketing, staffing issues or money laundering regulations, it’s all out there. Some of the advice is helpful, informed and current (the HMRC website, for instance, although a little vague in some areas is reliably up-to-date) but equally there is some questionable advice out there too.
So where do I sit in all this? How am I justified in offering anyone a copy/content writing service? Why should you read my business advice blog posts?
Here’s the thing. I’m a business, just like you.
I have to adhere to all the rules and guidelines that any business has to. There’s the tax return, the website upkeep, marketing, data processing regulations, and all the other ingredients of running a business.
My advice comes from a place of knowledge, not just in creating content, but in starting and running my own businesses.
What did I learn this year?
- Like most of you, this year I had to reframe my businesses to make sure they complied with GDPR – privacy policies, customer consent, related emails, the way I store information, etc.
- I changed the way I used LinkedIn. Whereas before it was more of a ‘placeholder’ for my online presence, now I use it as a way to network and reach out.
- I re-assessed my use of social media. With the algorithm chances of certain social media platforms, I decided where I would concentrate most of my effort (and it isn’t Facebook).
- I learned that it’s ok to take time off from making blog posts when work is really busy, and clients take priority (hence the lack of blog posts in May).
- Finally, I learned that I don’t have to follow all the business advice out there if it isn’t suitable for my business or personality.
I learned a lot more too, but I hope this shows you that we have a shared experience.
So, if my advice helps you, then brilliant. If it’s not your kind of thing or relevant to your business, well, thanks for reading, and that’s brilliant too.
And just in case it helps, I’d like to introduce you to some of those ‘experts’ I personally find helpful and turn to time and time again.
The Freelance Lifestyle – run by long term freelancer Emma Cossey “to provide freelancers with down-to-earth support and practical advice”.
A Branch of Holly – run by ‘Holly’ to offer help with your online presence. I love her videos.
Talented Ladies Club – founded by Hannah Martin and Kary Fisher, the TLC website offers advice on work, life and so much more, with blog posts from hundreds of contributors.
Social Bee NI – Louise Brogan offers advice on building your online business. I especially find her podcasts helpful and a great excuse to switch off from work with a coffee.
Creative Boom – founded by Katy Cowan for creatives and their businesses, this is an inspiring website offering a mixture of posts on creative projects and business advice.
Jess Creatives – Jess offers advice on branding, online strategy and design.
Marie Forleo – Marie is an inspirational entrepreneur who isn’t afraid to clown around or give tough advice. Her videos, whether offering business tips or life advice, always make me smile.