2017 will be another incredible year to remember. I felt like this was the year that we hit our stride and finally past the foundational part of growing our business. I can’t stress how long it takes to continue working on growing your brand and finding the right business model until things click like they did for us this year. There were so many days that I could have given up along the way and would never have gotten here. Other people make it look easy to grow a business but I am always asking myself, “Do I love what I am doing still?” If I don’t, I know something needs to change. This is why my business model has changed over the years and my focus this year changed a lot as well. I believe change is good and the self-reflection is important every single day you are running your business.
This year we didn’t change our business model or create any new products or services. Can you believe it? It felt amazing to just take the foundation we had built in 2016 and keep running with it. I’m an entrepreneur and I love creating new things. But, consistency is when the stress starts to decrease and you can start to get in a groove. That’s exactly how 2017 felt. We just did more of what worked. It took 6 years for us to figure out what works really well but when we found it, we just stayed there. This was the key to our success in 2017.
January: For the first time, we launched the Freedom Workshop. I put everything into this video series and worked for months preparing for it. I had never worked so hard on a launch in my life. This was a pivotal point for our brand because I felt like I created some of the best content I have ever made. And the best part of it was that it was completely free and it helped thousands of women start their businesses in 2017. If you missed it, we are doing it again in January 2018! You can register here.
February: We re-launched the Classy Career Girl podcast and started coming out with 2-3 episodes per week and received over 20 5 star reviews!
March: Classy Career Girl’s SEVEN Year Anniversary and 2,000 posts published.
April: We hit a big outrageous goal of 500 members in our membership sites. Love Your Career Formula and Corporate Rescue Plan. This was huge for us because just one year ago, we didn’t even have a membership site. There was definitely some celebrations at Team CCG this month!
May: This month we took a little break. We needed it. We stayed in Coronado for the month and this is when I really learned the value of new locations and the impact on my creativity and stress-level. It was so good to work from a different location than our home and the downtime really re-energized us for the next 6 months in our business and a really busy June launch of Corporate Rescue Plan.
June: This month was crazy busy! I realized I needed some help so I purposely went out and hired a meal prep service, a regular housekeeper and a personal assistant to help me get through the month.This was also a month we took my daughter out of daycare because we wanted to hangout with her more. It was kind of a trial month because I knew if I just had a little more time to focus on my launch and enjoy my daughter more, I would be happier, my business would grow and I would easily be able to afford these new expenses. All three I still have today and my personal assistant has now turned into a much bigger role at CCG. We love you Jenn. 🙂 I learned that you can’t continue to grow and uplevel your business by doing everything yourself. June was also the month that John and I flew to Toronto to attend Stu McLaren’s TRIBE Live event. We learned a ton and I was featured as a success story on a panel of other membership site owners like Carrie Green and Susan Garrett which was a huge highlight of my year! We also held a meet up with our members which was so fun too!
July: Another month where we realized we needed a little family downtime. We headed to Minnesota for two weeks to spend time with family and get ready for another busy fall launch. This month we also changed up our brand on our CCG Instagram profile. We went from posting 4 times a day to just once a day but started putting a lot more care into the design and look of our feed and brand. We also started planning out our Instagram a month ahead. This made things so much easier because we weren’t scrambling last minute trying to figure out what to post each day.
August: We launched the third annual Fall in Love With Your Work and Life challenge which is always so much fun to do. When you can rinse and repeat stuff you know is good, that’s when you can really get confident in the growth of your business and the impact you can have. This month we worked crazy on our September re-launch of Love Your Career Formula. We didn’t originally plan to have a September launch because we were a little burnt out but we decided to put the hard work in now to re-create the videos so that in 2018 we can use them again and again. So August was a crazy month of content creation in prep for September. Another huge thing we did in August was we launched a Business Class to Build a Classroom in Kenya and raised over $4,000 for a new school in Kenya with World Teacher Aid. What an incredible things we did TOGETHER. This was a highlight of my year!
September: We came out with our brand new Get Unstuck Workshop which felt so good because again it was some of the best free content I had ever created. John and I recorded and edited all of the videos and there were many late nights. All the hard work is worth it when you start getting the feedback from others of how much it helped them with their career transitions. This is why we do what we do!
October: This month was a month of reaching goals on social media and our website. We reached 2 million unique visitors to this site since we started and 13,000 Instagram Followers! We also hit 10,000 members in the Classy Career Girl Network.
November: For months we had been working hard so that we could spend a month in New Zealand with my family. My original goal was to not work at all. I did pretty good and worked a lot less than I normally do but John and I still had work to do while we were there. One of my favorite memories was working in a coffee shop in Auckland with John while my mom watched Mila. Wifi was not as easy as we hoped so there was a little stress involved with trying to work but overall, it was such a great month of rest and creativity. I started working on my book proposal and made my blog editorial calendar for January. While looking at such beautiful scenery I got so many ideas of what I want my brand to look like in 2018. Another example of how taking time off can really help re-energize me for the coming months of my business. While in New Zealand we held #MyStartupStory in our Classy Career Girl Network and it was so fun to read about how brands grew just by posting 7 days with our writing prompts. I even joined in on my AnnaRunyan Instagram account too which I decided to keep posting on daily so I can build my personal brand into 2018 as well.
December: We are about to celebrate an updated version to our free 90-day planner (coming soon!) We also launched the Freedom Workshop that will start January 2nd, 2018 and we hit 26,000 followers on Pinterest!
We are beyond excited for what’s coming next in 2018. Thank you so much for all of your support. Classy Career Girl would not be here without you all! Stay tuned for a post soon about my social media plan for 2018!
Anna Runyan + TEAM Classy Career Girl
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