Yakkety Yak 2014 Review

December 30, 2014 12:05 PM Published by Ashley Logan

Lessons learned in 2014

Wrapping up 2014 feels a tad bittersweet. For me and Yakkety Yak, this year has been full of major milestones and big lessons. Like any startup, it had its fair share of highs and lows, but ultimately this was a year to remember. I learned how to be a stronger content marketer and worked hard to make sure those lessons translated to each of our clients. The time and effort paid off, and Yakkety Yak grew by over 350 percent in the last quarter alone. I know. We've been busy. And grateful. We brought in new talent, hired freelancers and partnered with other business owners, earning trust, confidence and building strong relationships in a constantly changing industry.

But the growth didn't come without it's own share of frustrations. What I found, however, is that all of those challenges become useful when you stop, reflect and learn from them. And usually an element of frustration signifies a new phase of growth, especially if you stay strong and stay the course.

So here is us reflecting and learning as 2014 comes to an end. The following is a list of a few lessons we will take with us into the 2015.

1. Explain your business, talk about your business, even if some people don't understand your business. When you say content marketing to most people they have no idea what the heck you are talking about. But then once you explain, oh hey, it's actually custom blogs for brands and businesses, social media marketing and website content, then it clicks. So talking about this venture has helped me better explain what Yakkety Yak has to offer.

2. Don't be afraid to make mistakes. They help you grow. The beauty of being a small business is that there is a greater opportunity to take reasonable risks, without putting everything on the line. So pitch business that seems out of your league, rent that office space you've been eying and ultimately push your business to new heights. Not every risk ends in something scary—there is a lot of reward out there too.

3. When your gut tells you to say no, say no. As consumers, we've been told that the customer is always right, which can be confusing for business owners who want to make clients happy. But when you say no, it means you understand your limitations as a business, or better yet, that you've set boundaries. Those boundaries are actually milestones in the making. When something doesn't feel right, it generally isn't. You don't have to work with everyone who wants to work with you.

4. Don't compromise on your pricing. Not every organization is going have the budget to outsource content marketing services. Some might not jump on board because they don't see the value—that's okay, they will know where to find you in the future. That doesn't mean that you have to lower your prices to accommodate them—unless you have no clients to speak of, which could be a different story. Set your prices and stick to them. It's a lot harder to raise them then lower them.

5. Demonstrate loyalty in your business relationships. I begrudgingly accepted that I cannot be an expert on all areas of digital marketing. So I enlisted the help of other people and came up with creative ways to work together. Turns out to be the best choice I dragged my feet to make. Building partnerships and strong relationships has been a huge reason Yakkety Yak has experienced such growth. From SEO specialists, PR experts to web developers and designers, we couldn't have done it without you. Thanks for the friendship and the manpower.

With the New Year brings the launch of several new clients for Yakkety Yak. January is a busy time of year and we are feeling the heat in the best way possible. But one of the most important things a business owner can do, something I learned from my Dad, is take a little time out of the day to sharpen the saw—reflect on the wins and losses and come back stronger. Turns out, you might even learn something to carry with you along the way.

So here's to 2014. You've been so worth it.


Tags: 5 lessons every business owner should know, growing a business, challenges of growing a business, Doing Business, start up business, starting a business

This post was written by Ashley Logan


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