It's hard to believe that 2019 is already here. I know it sounds cliché, but the years just seem to be moving faster and faster! 2018 was such a whirlwind for our company. We celebrated three years in business, I officially took Simplified Social full-time and we re-branded our visual identity. 2018 was a time to focus on what we value most and take the brand in a new direction. Here are a few highlights from the year and a sneak peek to what's in store for Simplified Social in 2019.
1. Launch of the Virtual Marketing Manager Program
When I first started Simplified Social in 2015, the goal was to exclusively offer social media management services to entrepreneurs and smaller organizations. As the business has evolved and our client list has grown, we realized that there was a need in the market to service organizations with more than just organic social media. So, in 2018, we launched our Virtual Marketing Manager Program.
This program is essentially like having a Marketing Manager on your team, without paying someone a full-time salary. We take care of everything from social media, blog posts, website updates, e-newsletters, printing, photography and more. Of course, we focus on what we're experts at (hello, digital!) and strategically partner with other amazing companies to provide our clients with a full-service marketing experience. The real benefit? Not only is it cheaper for you than hiring someone full-time, but you are able to have a wheelhouse of expertise vs. hiring a marketing generalist.
2. Training and Workshops Expanded
In 2018, we had over 1500 business owners and employees attend our workshops. Crazy exciting! We were able to spend time in Calgary, Edmonton, Drumheller, Morinville, St. Albert, Claresholm and Spruce Grove. While our Social Media for Business workshop is our bread and butter, we also expanded by offering courses on content conversion, platform specific training, including LinkedIn for Business and created our first online webinar.
We have launched the beginning of our course dates for 2019. You can access them here. Stay tuned for more information coming on our online training program where you can attend Simplified Social courses from the comfort of your own home!
3. Growing the Business and Our Capacity
Any entrepreneur I have met has a hard time letting go out control. Your business is your baby. You created it and you know that no one can ever really replace you. The problem with doing it all yourself is that there is only so much work one person can do. There's a limit to the number of clients, number of projects and number of hours you put in. While the saying: "entrepreneurs are the only people who will work 80 hours a week to avoid working 40 hours a week" is very true, we know that as entrepreneurs, working for yourself can lead to burnout very quickly.
As the business continues to grow and the demand for our services increases, I knew that 2018 was the year that I really had to decide were I wanted to take Simplified Social. With a baby on the way, client projects and pretending to have a social life, I knew that this year I had to commit to work-life balance and it wasn't going to be possible with just myself and a few part-time contractors at the helm.
I advertised for an Account Manager back in July and the universe delivered! I hired Ally as our first full-time employee in November and haven't looked back since. It has been so wonderful having help and support, especially as I gear up for the next chapter, motherhood, in February.
With that being said, I am looking forward to the year of craziness and will be hiring a few interns to support us this summer as we prepare for our summit we plan to host in Edmonton in October 2019 (more on that soon!). If you or someone you know may be interested, please contact me directly.
I would like to extend a huge thank you to our amazing clients, partners, including ATB Financial and Alberta Women Entrepreneurs, and to my support network for helping me celebrate another year in business.
Cheers to 2019 and all that's in store!