From a Business Strategist and Advisor Who Actually Does the Work
I’m excited to introduce Frenchie Ferenczi, an experienced business strategist and startup advisor, who’s sharing valuable tips on how to stay close to the money and grow your business.
Frenchie aims to empower experts and creatives like you to overcome challenges, establish effective strategies, and achieve sustainable growth.
Tired of feeling overwhelmed by endless tasks that seem to lead nowhere in your business? The goal is to optimize revenue without draining your time and energy. We’re all about making things smarter and more efficient!
Keep reading because Frenchie outlines her 5 big-picture ways to make sure you stay close to the money and do the right work at the right time. If you want to go deeper, you can also download her freebie guide: Stay Close to the Money: 37 Stupid-Easy Ways to Grow Your Revenue (without being “salesy”).
Raise your hand if you’ve wasted time and energy on tasks that don’t have any measurable impact on your business.
If you didn’t raise your hand, you really are a unicorn.
But most business owners often find themselves wondering, “Where did the time go, and why do I feel like time flew by, and I have nothing to show for it?”
I first noticed this trend among my clients, from coaches to photographers, to brand strategists, and every service in between. When I started to dig deeper into why this was happening, I realized that anytime they felt this way, they had been focusing on tasks, not on impact.
This is when I came up with the idea of “Stay Close to the Money.” What I realized is that they needed a system to simply evaluate which work was the best use of time at a given time.
1. Plan for the best
The best is easier to plan for than the worst because it’s a single known outcome, as opposed to multiple “bad outcomes” that can happen. This helps us feel in control and allows us to improve our overall sense of confidence.
Yet, so many business owners waste time worrying about the worst outcomes and planning for those instead of executing in support of the best outcomes.
Key steps to do this:
- Define the outcome you want to achieve.
- Distinguish between what you’re worried about and what the real risks are.
- Create a success path that outlines your steps between where you are today and where you want to go.
As you practice planning for the best, you’ll see that when you focus your attention on one path, you can get to the end result you want faster.
This blog may contain affiliate links for programs, tools, and courses that I recommend. If you purchase these programs, I could receive a small commission. Thank you! I only recommend vetted programs and tools I use myself! Please check out my tool & resources guide here.
2. Start with a revenue roadmap
You need to set targets for your revenue to know whether or not you’re close to the money.
I have met business owners who have told me they want to make $300,000 this year, and when I ask them how they plan to get there… crickets.
You can do better than that.
This is not about crazy math or trying to predict the future, but when you have your monthly client and revenue targets mapped out, you get instant clarity around what the essential work is to move closer to those revenue goals.
There’s an easy way to build this out so that you can get the clarity and NOT feel overwhelmed, check out my Revenue Roadmap here.
3. Build your plan of action
Between planning for the best and your revenue roadmap, you’ll have what it takes to get a tactical plan in place. Remember, revenue isn’t something we work on; we have to spend our time and energy on the work that can (or will) generate more revenue.
Your strategy is your plan of action to take you from where you are today to where you want to go.
You are not marrying your plan; a plan is just a launchpad so that you can discover which efforts move your business forward and which don’t.
I have made hundreds of strategic plans, and none of them have been executed in the exact way they were mapped – but we were able to make mindful pivots along the way so that each shift was designed to move them closer to their path.
▶️Related YouTube Video: Pay Yourself First: Transforming Your Money Mindset as a Freelancer with Belinda Rosenblum
4. Do the right work at the right time
If you’ve followed all of these steps, you have the information that you need to stay on track, but now you need to make sure that you don’t get sidetracked. Make sure that on any given day, you’re clear on which work will get you closer to your goals.
There are a few different ways people can work:
- Do the wrong work at the wrong time.
- Do the right work at the wrong time.
- Do the right work at the right time.
We want to do the right work at the right time as much as possible (obviously).
The trick here is that there is a lot of work that can be the right work, so the hard part is understanding what the right time is.
Sometimes understanding this is obvious – like not launching on Christmas day. Sometimes, we learn by doing something at the wrong time.
This is a journey, but evaluating the timing of your efforts will keep guiding you closer to the money.
⚡Related Podcast Alert: Creating Healthy Money Habits with Chelsea Brennan
Tune in as Chelsea discusses our business owner money mindset. As freelancers, we have to understand our business finances in order to create plans for success, but more importantly, we must recognize our money beliefs – what’s propelling us forward and what’s holding us back.
5. Always prioritize impact over productivity
How hard your work is not a measure of success. Your ability to bring your business closer to your goals is.
Make sure that you are discerning about where you spend your time and that you are clear on the impact(s) they may have.
Entrepreneurs are oddly attached to their to-dos, but your to-do list is not a strategy. How much you got done in a given day or week is irrelevant if you can’t define the impact that work had on your business.
You get to be discerning about the work that you do, and as you focus on the outcome of your work (over the quantity), you’ll see how easy it gets to start doing less and earning more.
Do you need to acquire digital marketing implementation skills and build your workflows so you can solidly put yourself out there for work? Check out the Unicorn Digital Marketing Assistant School: a 12-week online program for acquiring digital marketing skills and running a freelance business. The next Live Cohort starts this Fall with confidence-building, discovery call training, and job leads from online business owners looking to hire a Unicorn who takes action. Count me in the next round!
And if you want all the best techie tools and recommended software to use with your digital marketing business in one easy place, grab Emily’s UDMA Tool Kit here for just $7.99
When you think about staying close to the money, you might think it’s all about selling more, but it’s not just about that.
You want to tee yourself up to make it easy to sell more.
You want to have a high-level view of your business that optimizes your time, your energy, and your resources.
And, above all, you get to have a superpower in your back pocket that allows you to strategically evaluate your work so that you get more of what you want and do less of what you don’t want.
How to Sign Better Clients and Make More Money as a Virtual Assistant
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Stop getting lost in meaningless tasks. Stay close to the money and focus on what really matters – impact! Plan for the best outcomes, set those awesome goals, and map out a path to success. And don’t forget to set revenue targets to guide you along the way.
Remember: plans can be flexible. Roll with the punches and make pivots when you need to. Prioritize doing the right stuff at the right time to get the best results.
Let’s face it, impact beats productivity any day. So, be smart about where you invest your time and energy, and watch your business thrive.
-Emily, Digital Marketing Consultant and Implementer
“I help smart women learn the in-demand digital marketing strategies and profitable tech skills to get hired as a unicorn digital marketing assistant.“
3 ways we can work together:
1. Do you need to acquire digital marketing implementation skills and build your workflows so you can solidly put yourself out there for work? Check out the Unicorn Digital Marketing Assistant School. (It opens twice a year so jump on the waitlist now!… I also share job leads with my students so it’s a gateway for anyone who wants to build a freelance business that gives them flexibility and meaningful work). You can also choose to go through the self-study program now. Enroll here.
2. Already doing the work and have clients? But need more clients and a better referral network? Apply for my Digital Marketer’s Workgroup. This is a tight-knit community of freelancers like you, supporting each other. Plus I’ve shared 1,600+ job opportunities with this community.
3. Need to hire a Unicorn Digital Marketing Assistant? Submit your job opportunity here. I’ll share with my workgroups totally free.
Yes, you really can work online.
Feeling overwhelmed and not sure how you can work from home and build your own online digital marketing business? Take a deep breath – you can do this. Start here with my list of 10 popular tasks that online businesses need help with the most!
These are the tasks that new clients are constantly asking for help with, and skills that they really need to find in a virtual assistant. Get access to this free download right now. Then make sure your own VA toolkit is up-to-date and relevant, and decide where you might need to invest in new growth and development for your biz.