7 Stages of Creative Business Success – Stage 1

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creative business success

Where are you on your journey to creative business success right now?

This year has been a doozy so far and it isn’t over. 

I am seeing people switch gears in their business and have success.

I am seeing others struggle to keep their doors open or those who are choosing to take a break and rest.

I am seeing people using their business and their voice for good – whether that’s related to the pandemic or to anti-racism.

Wherever you are on your personal and professional journey this year, there is no doubt that it has not been business as usual.

What are you creating and why?

That’s why it’s important to pause periodically, to reflect on what you are creating and why? Even when there’s not a pandemic.

I have been digging into my own content recently and reviewing what I teach other creatives about building business and asking the question: how can I simplify this and how can I ask better questions?

I completely redesigned the Success Path for my Creative Business Accelerator program and am committed to revisiting and updating all my content over the next couple of months. It’s time for a refresh.

I believe there are 7 stages of Creative Business Success: 

  1. Seed
  2. Spark
  3. Discovery
  4. Design
  5. Community
  6. Visibility
  7. Expansion

Over the next few weeks, I will dive into each of these stages. Knowing what stage you are at is very affirming. I find many newer creative business owners are trying to jump ahead to stages four and five without having really done the work of stages one to three.

And if you are anything like me, you have too many “seeds” or ideas you are trying to plant all at once! And you try to market and monetize a “seed” rather than waiting to make sure you have a viable design in place. 

If this resonates with you, keep reading! 

I know your Facebook feed and Instagram feed are flooded with ads from experts telling you that if you just try this one marketing tactic, you will make millions overnight. These ads are written to pull you in, to make you feel hopeful. I have been pulled in over and over and spent thousands.

Build your Foundation First

Growing a sustainable and profitable business requires commitment to the foundations first. 

Below are some questions you can ask yourself to see if you are still in the “Seed” stage or further beyond.

Those of you who know you are further along, fantastic, I celebrate you and I see you! There is gold in mining your current seeds of ideas and asking yourself these questions too before you add another course, product or service to your existing business.

I also want to add that your “seeds” have value, all of them. You need to honor and accept them, plant them, even if that’s in a journal or something like Evernote. However, you do not need to actively nurture all of your ideas at once, this is what creates chaos and overwhelm. 

Trying to do too much all at once is not the path to a successful business. 

Are you at the Seed Stage?

Here are the Seed Questions:

What is my brilliant idea? 

Is this idea a product, project, or business?

Is my idea viable as a business – meaning can I make the income I want doing this?

Is there an audience who already wants my idea?

Is anyone else doing this already?

How am I different from them? The same? Better? 

How committed am I to this idea? 

Am I willing to invest time, energy, and money into seeing this seed become a reality?

I’d be curious to hear your thoughts. 

Are you at the Seed stage of a new business, a new product or service? 

I will see you next week to talk more about Stage 2, which is the Spark stage. Before you can get to stage 2 you have to look at your willingness and your commitment to your seed.

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