Hello and welcome!

On this episode, we’re talking all about the slow season post-holidays. I share my prior outlook on it and how I view it now. I’ll walk you through the 7 areas that I’m heavily focusing now and that are sure to make a major impact on the rest of the year. Make sure to listen to see which areas you could implement into your mompreneur journey!

I’d love it if you’d connect with me over on Instagram! It’s where I’m most active and I love to share behind the scenes of mompreneur life on that platform.

Main Topics included in this Episode

  • The ways in which my views slow seasons have shifted
  • How I’m spending this down time
  • Areas of focus to make the most of your slow season

Resources Mentioned

  • Metricool Scheduler: Link

Connect with Alysha

Music Licensing Info

Music by Eli Lev - Dancin' on the Lawn


Episode Transcription

Welcome back to the Messy Mompreneur podcast. I'm your host, Alysha Sanford, and I'm so happy to have you here. The holidays are over. Greeting cards have been sent out, finances have taken a hit from all the gift giving. It's a new year and slow season has begun, which for my business is usually January through March, with lower session bookings. I used to be really scared coming into this season. Each year the financial unknowns. And the fears that it would continue to be slow into the normally busy months, it would always cause me so much stress I'd panic. But I've gotten into a good headspace with this season in the last few years. It's now a season that I look forward to because I'm able to get back into working on my business and not just in it like I do. September through December, I can catch up on office tasks, marketing and content planning, furthering my education. Starting projects I had had to set aside until I'd find more time, tax prep, etcetera. I can also rest if I want, although I tend to get too excited about the project swimming around in my brain. Hello, ADHD and Hyper focus on all of the things so I wanted to share a few of the projects that I'm currently diving into and how I'm spending my slow season. The first one is one that I. I should have done years ago, and especially before coming into motherhood, which is just the whole topic on its own, but choosing and integrating a CRM into my business finally. So a CRM, if you're not familiar with that, it's a customer relationship management system and there are so many options. Out there, there are some that are specific for photographers or, well, maybe not specific for them, but really helpful for them. And there are some. Just beasts as far as the different opportunities that they allow you to do within the system and everything that they'll manage. So yeah, I am diving in as overwhelming and scary as it feels, but it will allow me to automate my booking process for clients and automate. Some informational emails making it a much smoother experience for my clients and myself. They're not going to have to e-mail me for this specific information because it will have already been sent to them etcetera. It will also serve as a hub for client info and resources because many of these systems, basically they allow you to create a portal for your clients. Each client has their own portal and access and I think that is so cool and so fancy. And it'll keep me more organized with task lists, bookkeeping, client emails, and projects. Because right now I've got to do lists and a million locations, and I'm trying to condense them into my fancy schmancy planner. But I still feel like a system with ongoing reminders and countdowns and checklists and whatnot. I think that that'll be really, really helpful for all things business. OK. So that's the first thing, the 2nd is catching up on 2023 bookkeeping because I wasn't so great about doing it this year every month and here I am doing it for the entire year in January. But I'm trying to do that and beat the tax deadline because I hate that stress coming up in April. #3 spending more time with family, which should be everybody's goal all the time. It should be my goal all the time. But you know, with the information that I shared a little earlier. In the last couple of episodes, it's so important, you guys. Time is not guaranteed. Life is not guaranteed, so spend time with family, find ways to do it, find ways to prioritize it. And that is me reminding myself so I'm not just trying to preach. Thank you. Yeah. So #4, I am dedicating a whole entire day per week. To batch cooking or meal prep, some days it's going to look like taking one of our favorite recipes and cooking four times the amount of it for the freezer like. What is today today's Friday when I'm recording this? So two days ago I am dedicating Wednesdays to it for the time being. But two days ago I cooked four times the batch of our favorite soup and. And it provided, I think, 8 different nights of meals if I'm counting, right. So anyway, one day, one round of cooking, one set of dishes, and yes, extra time prepping and whatever packaging. But I got 8 dinners out of it, you guys. So it is so beneficial if you can do it. And then other days it might just look like chopping a ton of veggies like a million veggies chopping it up. Packaging them for the freezer for the days that I actually feel like cooking later on so. Lots of different ways that you can batch cook or meal prep to save yourself time later, and I have another episode on Kitchen Hacks and whatnot, so refer back to it. I can't remember the episode number, but. Yeah, it's easy to find. Uh, so yeah, in the future, it'll look like spending time with family to learn and master sourdough bread. I'm determined to do this, even though it scares me to have something that I have to feed in water because I can't keep plants alive. So this will be an experience, but I have an accountability partner. My stepmom's going to be doing it alongside me. So hopeful. Really, that will keep us both going on that journey and it'll also look like gardening and canning at my grandma's because she is awesome at that and I want to learn. And bonus, I get to hang out with her so. Yeah, I'm excited for it all. And as someone who's previously and recently disliked being in the kitchen, I can't even believe that I'm saying all this. But my family and my future self will be grateful for setting this as a priority, batching tasks and being able to get out of the house more, also my two year old absolutely loves baking. Her favorite thing is the KitchenAid mixer and it's so funny to me that she loves it because prior to me discovering that, I just I really hated being in the kitchen and I feel bad saying that because the privilege to be able to be home and cook for your family. But. It's a small space, small kitchen. We didn't have a working dishwasher, which now we do update. For those of you that knew that I didn't have a working one and it was a pain point, we have a. Working dishwasher so. Baking cookies with her is the sweetest little thing and she loves it. So anyway, more time in the kitchen. So #5 I have recently launched my LTK shop. It's the like to know shop. This is more of a for fun thing than a need, but I'm excited to house links to my favorite online products and this will house products for. For the kitchen, for home, toddler life, work life for the studio, for the client closet. If you're a client that is looking for inspiration, you want to shop for your family session and you want shoppable items. This is going to be the best one. Stop shop for that so that you can see all the different. Queries I'm going to put a link to it in the show notes for you too, so check it out and follow me there. All right. Number six, I'm focusing on more time efficient content planning routines and I swear this should be an episode all on its own, and it probably will be, but I'm just going to. Kind of do an overview of what I'm working on, so I have lost so much time and effort by thinking that social media was the best way to market my business. It is. Not it is not like there are benefits to it. Sure, I love connecting with my clients on social media. I love seeing their lives. I love the personable aspect, but the short term aspect of posts. And the amount of effort it takes to produce them and to continue to spit them out, to keep up with the algorithm. It's exhausting. And I would be. I feel confident saying that burnout from a lot of business owners probably stems from social media. It is exhausting. So anyway, long form content is the way to go and I won't go down that rabbit hole today, but I'll share. What I've been refocusing on and if you struggle with the time suck that is social media marketing, grab a notebook and take a couple of quick notes in case you find this flow of mine that I'm going to share helpful and I am not an expert, this is just something that I'm kind of piercing together from many other experts. Which is basically my entire podcast, just piercing together. What I'm trying out and the journey of it. So the first step in content planning routines I am looking at my year and I'm noting any big session events like mini sessions and whatnot, or launches that I plan to do. So I'm noting those. And then I'm sorry, then I'm identifying my target audience or my ideal client and then my content pillars. And from there I'm batch creating blog posts that relate to the events I want to market and that relate to my content pillars. The blog posts will all provide value in some way. I plan to do this monthly all during one afternoon and to schedule them accordingly, so I'm doing it once a month ideally and that'll produce my next month or two or whatever of blog posts. It just depends on the schedule that I'm going to do and how frequently, of course. And then I'm repurposing the topics and some of the text from those blog posts into a mix of scheduled emails for my subscribers, my e-mail list, long captions for the scheduled social media posts, short captions for scheduled Pinterest posts and photos for my Google Profile. I can also utilize the content for my reels, stories and more. If you're looking for a great all-in-one content scheduling tool that is not intimidating, I use METRICOOL. It's M-E-T-R-I-C-O-O-L and I absolutely love it. It's so user friendly. I use the free plan of it and you can still do a lot of posts within a month. On the free plan, so check it out. It is really cool. It's really powerful. It seems like they're always adding new features to it, and I wish I had discovered it years ago. Yeah and as a bonus, some of these topics on these blog posts will even cross over to this podcast as they relate to both of my audiences. So that's kind of handy too. And yeah, basically, I want the majority of what I post to be connected to a bigger picture and to work more efficiently than my previous. Social media posting tendencies I I mean, I even used to just post a random photo with a random caption because I'm like, oh shoot, I haven't posted in a week and a half and I don't want to look like I'm falling off the face of the earth. So anyway this will get me onto a better routine and help me feel a little bit more organized. And lastly, during slow season I am obviously jumping back into this podcast. It can be a lot to keep up with if I'm being honest and to manage on the back end especially for my husband who so generously does all the editing, production and hosting by hand. We are implementing the strategy of batch-working for the podcast and I'm excited to continue sharing this messy journey of mompreneurship with you. I hope that in whatever season of life you find yourself in, that you are able to have a cozy, slow season, either hibernating and resting, or excitedly chasing your dreams.