It’s been a weird year (to understate it).
While I think I have been incredibly lucky this year in keeping my clients and even gaining some, I didn’t get to achieve the goals I set for myself at the start of the year, and I don’t think anyone will disagree that’s been a very trying one.
So I decided to launch a personal project to help me feel like I still accomplished something despite being in a pandemic – and at the same time use my skills for myself for once.
Theory becomes practice
As a strategist, you can imagine that most of my work happens in my head. I do get to be hands on when I manage social media presences for my clients, but so much of what I do is molding knowledge into plans and strategies.
It’s very cerebral and I wanted to get stuck into the practical – play around on my own time and draw outside the lines, testing theories and just how human marketing can be.
So I created, marketed and Kickstarted my own card game.
Use those skills
I myself have only experienced a service-based career – whether working for others or myself. When I market myself it’s all about what I can do for others, what I can write or create for them. I wanted to see what it was like to create my own product and delve into that type of business and marketing.
I have been working on this card game for about three years now, and yup, I decided that 2020, in the middle of a pandemic was the time to bring it to the world.
I can tell you, it’s been a ride.
I had to learn all the intricacies of how to run a successful Kickstarter campaign (509% funded with over 700 backers – whoop!), which is a whole separate marketing undertaking to anything else I’ve done. On top of that, I’ve waded through figuring out mass manufacturing, while trying to keep everything local and sustainable.
Told you, a ride.
Cement your confidence
But my main takeaway from it all? I know what I’m doing. When you are service-based, especially at a strategy level, you don’t always see the end result of your plans. I put forward ideas and strategies that take into account how different platforms work, what should attract the right audience, and work within budgets and restrictions – but I rarely get to live in the reality of every step while it plays out.
It’s been amazing being able to work through the entire process, from my marketing plan, to engaging on each platform and tweaking ads to be just what I want. There’s also been a great freedom in being my own client – I’m completely ok with giving myself free reign to experiment!
If this year has knocked you a bit (which I’d say it’s done to all of us to some degree), then I really recommend hiring yourself. It doesn’t matter what your skills are, use them for yourself for once – whether it’s making a candle for yourself using techniques that you hadn’t dared trying out on a paying customer, or commissioning yourself for a personal graphic design project. Do it.
Want to rebuild after a batshit year? Hire yourself.