2011 Resolutions

There are just seven and a half hours left in 2010.  It has been a really great year for myself and New Media Campaigns.  Personally, I got to travel around the country to see friends, attend several weddings, make some great stories, achieve several personal goals, witness some awesome sporting events, have some inspiring conversations, read some great material, and plenty more.  Professionally, NMC worked on more than 100 projects, added a new team member, grew revenue by more than 30%, launched our first product, got some awesome press, and plenty more.

I'm a firm believer in New Year's Resolutions, as I think they're a great goal-setting mechanism and really inspire you to achieve.  For even more incentive, this year I'm going to make my top resolutions public on this blog.  Below are my top 5 resolutions I came up with over the past week, and I'll update everyone as I achieve them.  If I don't complete all of them, it won't be the end of the world, but I'm really going to make a concerted effort.

  1. Travel Abroad - I haven't been abroad since I went to Italy in the summer of 2007.  That's just way too long in my opinion.  I've been able to see some awesome places around the US in the past three years, but I want to go abroad this year to be exposed to a different culture and a totally new place.  Right now, the leading contender is a winter trip to India.
  2. Read 12 Books - I read a lot.  But not books.  I love reading the NY Times, the New Yorker, Vanity Fair, Inc., various blogs, and plenty more.  Most of these items are longer pieces that consume a good amount of my time (I'm a slow reader).  However, I often find myself reading quick little articles that I don't really care about too much and that I don't retain much info from.  This year, I want to focus on reading books that really dive into topics and give me a much better grasp of a subject than an article ever could.  I think one a month is an aggressive pace that will still allow me the time to read the articles I love.
  3. Run 10 Miles in Under 76 Minutes -- This past year, largely thanks to my girlfriend, I got into running.  I ran a 10 miler in April and recorded a time around 82 minutes.  My goal had been 85 minutes and since I'd never run in a race longer than a 5k, I was really pleased with my results.  This year, I want to break the 8 minute mark and finish at around a 7:30 pace.  It's going to be tough, but I think I can do it.  My first shot will be at the same April 10 Miler, the Tar Heel 10 Miler.
  4. Blog Every Two Weeks -- This one is self explanatory.  I suck at blogging consistently on this domain.  My time is usually consumed by blogging on the NMC site or doing other things.  This year, I'm going to blog at least twice a month and hopefully more often than that.  I've got a whole list of topics written down and I plan on going through them one by one.  Keep me honest on this one!
  5. Cook More -- I eat out for just about every meal.  It's expensive and unhealthy.  This year, I want to learn to be a better cook and also focus on making more meals for myself.  I did a CSA for the last few months and that really forced me to cook, because I didn't want to waste the different items.  
  6. Grow NMC and HiFi -- Considering that this blog is largely about entrepreneurship, this resolution shouldn't come as a surprise.  We had a great year at NMC.  We grew the company in a plethora of different ways.  However, one of the most dangerous things is to get complacent and just assume that growth naturally happens.  It doesn't.  It takes hard work, persistence, risks, trial and error, and some luck.  In 2011, I'm focused on helping our company taking the next step in our growth and really focused on helping our new product, HiFi CMS, become the success that we know it deserves to be.

Well, there you go.  That's what I'm shooting for in 2011.  I'll let you know how I fare.  Thanks again for helping make this such an awesome year and here's to 2011!

Moving Up In The World

It has been a few weeks since I put a post up (we have been super busy at New Media Campaigns), but that hasn’t slowed the new blog from moving up in the world.  I present you with three examples:

  1. New Blog Design and WordPress Install.  One of the main goals of starting this blog was to help me get more comfortable with CSS, HTML, PHP, Apache, and websites in general.  Even though I run a web design firm, I’m just the guy that selling and happifying; I totally rely on the other guys to actually implement an elegant solution to clients’ problems.  So, with some help from my colleague, Kris Jordan, I was able to install WordPress onto our company server and redesign the blog with the Fusion WordPress Theme.  I also made some additional tweaks through CSS and plugins, getting the blog to the current state it is in.I’m happy with the way it looks, but there are definitely more improvements to come, so stay tuned!
  2. Ranking #1 in Google for my Name.  Another one of the main goals for the blog was to take control of my digital footprint and be the top organic search result for Clay Schossow (which gets millions and millions of searches everday, obviously).  Thanks to a little link love from my business partner, Zach Clayton, a targeted domain, and several posts, I now organically rank #1 for my name.  According to Google Analytics, this status has already helped a few curious people learn more about me.  I’d much rather this blog be the top Google result than Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook, which used to be the top three results, as the blog is a more rounded and thoughtful representation of me…or at least, I like to think so.
  3. Being named one of the 100 Best Blogs for Young Entrepreneurs.  I got an email from Kelly of the “Online College Degree Blog” about it over the weekend and was at first pretty skeptical.  However, after checking out the post, their site, and some compete data, I realized it wasn’t a scam and was flattered to be chosen.  Seems like it’s a pretty new site aimed at acting as a portal for people interested in online education, especially younger people.  They feature 99 other great resources on the list and gave this blog a nice write-up…even if they did add an “L” to the blog’s name, which hopefully they fix soon.  Not sure where or how they came across the blog, but thanks for the shout out.

Well, that’s the blog update.  I’ll put a more substantive and less self-glorifying post up over the weekend.  Thanks for everyone’s support and interest, it definitely spurs me to make more of an effort to post good content here.  If you like what you’ve seen so far, be sure to subscribe to keep up to date.  Thanks!