OK, so you’ve decided to focus on your marketing and so far this year it’s going well. But to scale, see more clients and become more efficient you need some hints and tips to help you become more effective.
I hear it time and time again, in my Facebook group, with my clients and my group Thrive Together, “I feel like a slave to marketing, especially social media and often I get stuck on what to focus on first”.
Work smarter, not harder they say. Well, I’m going to share some of my own top tips to help you get better results from your marketing.
1. PLAN EACH MONTH AHEAD
I get it, you’ve put time aside to create content but you’ve got writers block. Before you start tapping away, plan your month ahead.
Start by getting into the shoes and position of your ideal client. In any given month, what do they need to be hearing and seeing from you and your business this month? What problem do they have and how can you help them solve it?
Come up with a theme and use my planner to plot out your key pieces of marketing with relevant content. Download my free monthly planner – and each month I’ll email you directly with the planner for each month.
2. RECYCLE & REPURPOSE
Don’t feel you need to show up every day with brand new content. Remember that amazing blog post you wrote last week? Pull out some of the key points and form an email to your database. Pull out key quotes and drop into a creative template (Canva for example) and share across social media.
Your audience changes frequently and remember not everyone sees everything you broadcast. Especially with organic reach declining on many social media platforms. Remember that engaging content you shared 3 months ago? Use it again. Sure, put a slightly different spin on it by changing the caption slightly, but re-inventing the wheel is not in your favour when it comes to productivity.
3. SCHEDULING IS YOUR FRIEND
We have so much at our disposal these days. And free tools too. When it comes to social media you’ve got the native schedulers and you’ve got third-party tools. Condensing an hour or two a week by scheduling your content is a great productivity hack. I use the Facebook native platform to schedule to my page and group and use Planoly for Instagram. And of course, there’s no end to the limits with email tools. Automate your email sequences and plan in advance your monthly emails. See point number 2. Write a blog, turn it into an email and pull out content for your social media platforms. Use it as a basis for your networking content too.
4. IT’S OK TO SAY NO
Take time to review what marketing you’re doing and what’s working for you. What’s getting you bookings, enquiries, growing your lead gen, raising your awareness? Don’t be afraid to give your marketing a little STOP, START, CONTINUE treatment. You may find something that’s no longer working for you but the time you’re using could be better used elsewhere. Just because a well mean contact or friend says you SHOULD be doing something doesn’t mean it’s right for your business.
5. GET TIME BLOCKING
My working day starts at 9.15am and finishes at 3pm. I’ve found blocking out time & significant tasks each day has been a big game changer. There are apps and online tools you can use, but I’m an old school kind of gal and each day I print out one of my Daily Schedulers.
This is not about re-writing your do list in another format. This is about setting goals, grouping together tasks (admin), prioritizing tasks that are going to make greatest significance and setting timeframes to get “it” done. Do you work more efficiently when you have a deadline? Many people do. Giving yourself a time-block to complete a task helps keep me focused on what I’m supposed to be doing.
Other rules that have helped me with time blocking include….
- WORK TO YOUR STRENGTHS. When are you most productive and which times are better suited to certain tasks. I’m way more productive in the morning and I’m more likely to read, plan and reflect in the afternoon. I work a couple of evenings too – and I know some evenings I can feel inspired and be creative and others I just want to sit and listen to podcasts. That’s why I do these planners daily. It’s important to put in time for breaks…. and rewards too! I generally work for 50 minutes with a 10-minute break.
- MAKE IT FLEXIBLE. Where you need to, rework your time blocks throughout the day as circumstances change. The goal is to make sure you always have an intentional plan for the time that remains in the workday.
- GIVE YOURSELF ENOUGH TIME…BUT NOT TOO MUCH! It’s easy to underestimate how long things take. If you go over your allotted time, rework your schedule. Some people add in “buffer zones” where they can play catch up.
- OFFLOAD DISTRACTIONS. Switch off social media, your phone, anything that’s going to distract you. Keep post-it notes nearby to capture anything that springs up when other things need to get done.
6. DELEGATE AND / OR ASK FOR HELP
As a small business owner, you have to recognise you can’t do everything. Over the past 12 months, I’ve seen a huge rise in VA’s, social media managers, accountants for small businesses just for starters. Yes, there are tasks we could do. But they don’t play to our strengths and it’s detracting us from spending time on the stuff that we’re really good at. Delegating can get something important done in a fraction of the time it may take us. If you’re looking to grow your business, there’s a chance you’re going to have to do something differently. If someone else can do it, let them.
The same goes for marketing. When you’re in that position to start outsourcing, make sure you keep the content that only you can deliver (the ‘lives’, the spontaneous posts, the events, the networking) and outsource the rest. A word of caution – make sure when outsourcing your marketing, make sure they get your brand when it comes to tone of copy and images and videos they use and that they fully understand the social media platforms that you want to use. I’m a huge believer in ‘something is better than nothing’ but in marketing be mindful who is representing your brand with your marketing.
I hope that you’ve found my top 6 tips helpful and can start applying some changes to your business. Working with someone like myself, either 1:1 or in a group, is a sure fire way to accelerate your knowledge and productivity. One of my most popular ways of working with me is to join me at one of my group VIP days. 5 hours getting clear on how to achieve better results and increase your profits within your business. I host these days in London and in Bishop’s Stortford. Details of my next two days can be found here: VIP DAY INFORMATION.
I’d love to hear how you get on. Drop me an email with your feedback email@example.com
I’m Sam Dixon, founder of Thrive In Business – an experienced Marketing Coach & Consultant to ambitious businesswomen who want to launch, grow and scale their business with flexible marketing support. For a free 30 minute discovery call get in touch by email firstname.lastname@example.org
And if you’re looking for the support of like-minded women, come and join the conversation on my Facebook group Women Who Thrive in Business