Is It Icing Or Is It Cake? : A Growth Metaphor For Your Business

Last week I wrote to you about marketing (or rather, marketing in a way that isn’t an example of the sleazy, slimy, manipulative tactics we see all over our feeds). But something came up in the most recent Motorcycle Club call so important to this marketing conversation that I had to share it with you…and that’s GROWTH.

There are 2 types of growth: expansive and deepening.

As the CEO of your rising business, you absolutely must be discerning about which activities you’re putting energy behind…and when you’re being drawn toward one when you really need the other.

Let’s use the metaphor from the Motorcycle Club group coaching call: icing versus cake.

Expansive growth is icing. It makes things pretty. It lures people in. It amplifies your brand. It signals that you’re ready to take it further. (sidebar: Spark Intensives are perfect for expansive growth)

Deepening growth is cake. It’s your foundations. It’s your stability. It’s streamlining your services suite, your systems, and your practices. It’s making sure your recipe is both delicious and repeatable.

The trouble is… most of the folks selling solutions to business challenges will give you expansive growth solutions for deepening growth problems. New website, new copy, how to pivot, how to book yourself out/grow your email list/attract more IG followers/get on another platform/etc.

And these are attractive — really really attractive — especially when things aren’t going well. They’re even necessary WHEN YOU’RE IN THE RIGHT POSITION FOR THEM.

But after more than a decade in business, I’ve gotta tell you…most of the time, the problem isn’t in the icing. It’s that you need better cake.

Ultimately, you want a stable business, one that has the capacity to grow. And if you grow expansively without doing the deepening work, your whole framework will come crashing down. That’s not a recipe for cake; that’s a recipe for burnout.

You don’t want amplification without substance.

I know you have the stuff. It’s simply about making sure your recipe for success is both delicious and repeatable.

If that resonates with you, there’s still a chance to join us for the fall cohort of Foundations Prep School. We start September 27th.

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Helen Tremethick

Helen Tremethick

Regenerative Business Designer + Coach. ❤️ Weirdos & Queerdos . Renegade . Kinda Nifty . Thinks writing third person bios is hilarious . helentremethick.com