Editing the Focus of My Business / by Nicole Paulus

image by Bachtiar Rahady, Flickr

image by Bachtiar Rahady, Flickr

As a business owner, I think it’s important to occasionally reflect on where you were a few weeks, months,  and even years ago. It’s equally important to have a rough idea about where you want to go in the future. 

I have been working on Nico New Media for a little over 3 years now. What started as a part time copywriting gig has flourished into a website design, content management, social media management, consultancy, and PR management business that allows me to work anywhere in the world (anywhere with reliable internet, that is.) In the beginning stages of my business I had a hard time saying “no” when a client asked me to do something (even if I had no prior knowledge of how to do it.) This was a great idea for building my skill set, reputation and client base, but as I slid into veteran entrepreneur status, I wasn’t entirely satisfied with this "renaissance (wo)man" approach. Instead, I wanted to specialize in one thing. I realized that doing a lot of things was preventing me from getting really good at one thing. It was also swallowing a lot more of my time (which for a business woman--time is just as valuable if not MORE valuable than actual dollars.) 

So for the past few days I have been working on what specific skill I can deliver to clients. My criteria was simple—this “skill” had to be something that I enjoyed doing, something that I could do quickly and efficiently, and something that I was good at. That’s when it dawned on me—EDITING! While I thoroughly enjoy content writing, the process of creating content can be quite daunting. I found that when I wrote for other people it left me feeling creatively drained, disinterested, and exhausted. Editing other people’s content, however, proved to be much more exciting. Clients give me rough drafts of blog posts and I polish them, choose a catchy image, wave my SEO wand, and VOILÀ—a beautifully crafted, grammatically correct, engaging piece of content. Hey—I was not only good at this, I actually liked doing it. Words are like puzzle pieces to me; I shift them around until they all fit into a cohesive message. 

So this year, I am going to be changing the focus of my business slightly and try to obtain more clients that need help editing and polishing content. This may include editing blog posts, press releases, website content, essays, eBooks, product descriptions, cover letters, resumes, proposals, etc. I’d also like to focus on obtaining clients that need help translating websites from “broken English” to native English. I have come across many sites that either reluctantly rely on Google Translate or worse, attempt to translate the content themselves. It totally kills their credibility and prevents them from being taken seriously by native English speakers.

Modern day poet Jay-Z once said, "every single person in the world has genius-level talent"—mine just happens to be rearranging words in a way that makes sense. What is YOUR genius-level talent?