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I'm Kristi. I'm the artist behind At the Dot Design.
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A very large percentage of surface pattern designers these days know Bonnie Christine. Whether you’ve taken her signature course called Immersion (I have, it helped me immensely), are a part of her membership called Flourish, or have listened to her podcast you know she’s a top-notch educator and gatherer of incredible people.
Once a year Bonnie and her team put together a two-day online conference called Immersion Live. I think* I’ve attended every year since she made it virtual and each year it gets better and better. The speaker lineup this year was very impressive with Amy Porterfield leading the charge. There were so many ah-ha moments for me throughout the conference, but I wanted to take this blog post to highlight my top three takeaways from the conference.
This was BY FAR my biggest takeaway from the two days and I have Amy Porterfield to thank for it. The title of Amy’s presentation was 5 Strategies to Scale Your Business. The number one strategy on her list was “less is more”. She recommended choosing TWO things in your business and doubling down on them. I don’t know about you, but my business (and I struggle to even call it a business) has a lot of “things”. I’ve tried POD, an Etsy store, a free course, Skillshare, I did all the research to start selling products, I’m pitching, creating content, plus all the other things. Feel overwhelmed reading that list? Have a similar list yourself?
Amy’s presentation helped me to realize that my two things are education and licensing. You know what I’m not doing this year…any of the other things on that list. I’m going to double-down on education and licensing and do my darndest to say no to all of the other things that come my way in the next year. Focusing on two things will help me make a bigger impact, and I chose those two things because I was already seeing success and enjoying those two things.
This wasn’t new, but if you’re anything like me you kind of dread building your email list. It can feel like a bit of a slog. BUT as all the online marketing gurus say you don’t own social media so you could lose your followers or your customers overnight if social media is the only way you are communicating with them. I’ve been dabbling with growing my email list, but this year I’m going to put some real focus into building it up. I’ve been creating new lead magnets, sharing artist interviews, and being much more consistent with asking people to join my list.
So far those things have helped me grow my list little by little. Have I had a post go viral and gained hundreds of subscribers? Nope. But I have been consistently adding a few new subscribers to my list each week since I started making it a priority.
One of Bonnie’s talks centered around three phases that we all move through.
If you think about it, chances are you’ve gone through all of these phases. I’m the kind of person who learns something new and then dives deep into it, gathering as much information as humanly possible. I devour information to the point of excess and have a very hard time moving into the implementation phase.
During the last year, I worked really hard to implement a lot of the things I’ve learned. I leaned into pitching and created a consistent system for myself (if you want help in that area I have a new course coming out soon called Pitch Like a Pro). I also finally implemented all of the amazing courses I’ve taken on how to create courses and launched my Skillshare class.
Getting into the implementation phase has been a real boon for me. It’s a place I never seemed to be able to get to in the past. The thing is after I launched my Skillshare class I was exhausted, but rather than take a break for rejuvenation I pushed myself to keep going.
After several weeks of getting down on myself for not accomplishing the things I wanted to do next I decided to give myself a break. I made lots of bad art, went on walks with my dog, ate lunch with my partner, and did lots of non-business things. After taking a bit of time I started to feel much better and even came up with my pitching accountability course and felt inspired to start working on my next fabric collection.
Rejuvenation can feel like a luxury, but in reality, it’s exactly what I needed to help me keep going. For me, it was a little hard to slow down, but taking the time to relax and unwind is what helped my energy top back up again.
Those are just three things I learned during Immersion Live 2023. Of course, there were tons more. I felt so inspired after the two days, one of my favorite parts was just hearing about the successes and the stories other artists shared. It was really inspiring and gave me hope that At the Dot Design can be what I want it to be. I know it will take a while for me to get there, but I’m heading in the right direction and for me that’s all I want right now.