This is a question I’m sure many of us receive often. “What do you do?” I’d dare to say it’s one of the first questions you ask someone when you first meet them.
Before, it was an easy question for me to answer because I had a “normal” job. I would say, “I work at __________ and I do ____________.” Fill in the blank, easy peasy.
Now, that’s not the case.
Let me rewind a bit to give the background as to how I got to where I am.
Three and a half years ago Ryan and I got on the debt paying train. We essentially drank the Dave Ramsey kool-aid and took it on full force. One of the reasons that kept us going was just the thought of us living like no one else and not having any sort of debt whatsoever (full disclosure, this will probably change once we buy a home because we are by no means going to pay all cash for our first house).
Another reason was to afford me the possibility of working for myself one day.
For reasons unknown to me, I’ve had it in the back of my mind to one day be my own boss. Maybe it’s from listening to entrepreneur podcasts, maybe it’s my past experiences at old jobs, or maybe I was inherently born with a desire to pave my own way…I don’t know the reason but I know it’s been nagging at me for a while now.
So when Ryan got the job opportunity down here in Dallas, it became a reality a lot sooner than I originally thought. I’m sure if we would have stayed in Milwaukee, I never would have just up and quit my job, but somehow moving across the country gave me the courage to finally try and see if I could make this work.
Oooookay. Now that you have the background story, let’s get back to the title of this post: What in the heck do I do all day?
I’ll admit, when I would read articles or listen to entrepreneur podcasts and they would say that being your own boss is not for the faint of heart and that it is a LOT of work, I kind of rolled my eyes.
I mean, how hard could it be? You can do whatever you want, whenever you want, right?
While yes, I can spend the day in my pajamas and take a class at the gym in the middle of the day…it’s not that glamourous.
And it IS a lot of freaking work. Like, I have never worked this hard in my life.
Here’s the thing: We moved to a brand new city, where we didn’t know anyone. Where I have no connections or much knowledge of how to be a small business owner.
To say the first few months were hard is an understatement.
I had no idea how to structure my day. I had a million project ideas. I needed to build a website from scratch (cuz uh, I did not want to spend money on a professional right now). I also needed to figure out simple things of moving to a new city…like knowing my way around the grocery store.
It was a lot. And Ryan was gone a lot for work, which was expected but was still lonely at times. Thank God for Murphy, he at least gave some sort of structure to my day.
Annnnnyways. The first few months were rough and hard to navigate, but I finally found my groove in January. I gave myself some yearly goals, and broke them down into monthly goals so I could have a chance of actually achieving my yearly goals.
I started going to MeetUps and meeting other small business owners.
I started networking online.
I consistently blogged on my business website.
I started submitting proposals to potential clients.
And it started clicking. I started actually getting clients. Like, real people and businesses that pay me to do what I love doing. Whaaaat?!
So I’ve typed over 600 words and I still haven’t answered the initial question of what I do. Well, it’s not the easy fill in the blank answers I used to be able to say, so here it goes. On any given day, I could be doing the following:
- Creating social media content for my clients (yes, this includes Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest…and all of the other million platforms out there). This includes creating the images, writing the text, finding article to share, responding to comments, etc.
- Creating social media content for my business (yes, this includes Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Periscope)
- Interacting and responding back to people who have commented on any of the social platforms I manage
- Creating and maintaining advertising on social platforms for clients
- Creating social media strategies for clients
- Blog/article writing for clients
- Blog for my business blog
- Writing article for other websites
- Website maintenance for clients
- Sending proposals to potential clients
- Tracking my business finances/expenditures
- DOING MY OWN TAXES. UGH. THE WORST.
- Doing pesky business related tasks (registering an LLC, filling out the right business paperwork, etc)
- Going to MeetUps (either to meet potential clients or to learn)
- Meeting with other small business owners to discuss all things solopreneur (this almost always includes drinking wine)
- Write email newsletters for clients
- Write email newsletters for my business
- Responding to emails
- Writing landing page content
- Make sure I’m up-to-date on all of the social platforms (which are always changing. constantly)
- Monthly/quarterly/yearly business planning and adjusting while I go
- Participating in Twitter chats/Facebook groups to promote my business
- Maintaining my business website, making sure everything is up-to-date and constantly making it better
- Phone calls/skype calls with clients/potential future clients
- And finally….my latest project that I am SoExcitedAboutOmg…creating an online course! (which has it’s own long list of things I do)
I primarily work with other small businesses/entrepreneurs who need help in managing their social media accounts or creating a social media strategy for their business, so if you know any Etsy shop owners, local restaurants…any type of small business that needs social media or marketing help, send them my way!
So…as you can see, the question of “What do you do?” isn’t as easy to answer in one sentence. Because in reality, I do everything.
This is a pretty accurate description of what goes on in my head during any given day:
Though it has many ups and downs, and is certainly the hardest thing I’ve ever done so far in my life, I wouldn’t have it any other way.