3 Quick and Effective Ethical Marketing Tips During Hectic Times
Ethical Marketing Q&A
Every Tuesday, I post a photo of my favorite emu asking for your marketing questions. Yesterday, I received a very good one in The Changemaker’s Marketing Club from a member who is busy with client work (YAY!) so is looking for quick and effective ways to market her services so as not to lose momentum.
This is very common because if you wear several hats in your business, you can easily get caught up with other work and marketing can fall by the wayside. Who’s had that happen? Raise your hand! Hey, don’t be shy, my hand is up too!
The important thing to remember is to not neglect marketing completely since your sustainable business is about the money and we all know what happens when you don’t market, right? You won’t secure the future of your sustainable business.
I’ve compiled a few tips to not only help you market when your time is limited but also to help you avoid this situation in the first place.
How to Market during Busy Times
#1: Practice effective time management
#2: Do what works best for you
#3: Create content in bulk
#1: Practice Effective Time Management
This is a huge block for many people, not just entrepreneurs. Even the most organized person can be challenged with managing their time effectively and satisfactorily. I know I am.
So how can you prioritize and organize your time to get the most out of it? Plan it.
At the end of each year, it’s wise to go over the previous year: recap, review, analyze your data, etc. Figure out what worked, what didn’t, what you want to continue doing, what you’d like to stop doing and most importantly, how you feel about each activity and your marketing strategy as a whole.
After the analyzation process, then you can optimize your marketing strategy accordingly and set new objectives to reach your ultimate goal. After that, you’re able to start planning out the coming year with actionable steps and then work through each step. Leave plenty of white space on your calendar for spontaneous stuff because they are guaranteed to pop up.
Many times, your long-term plan will get rearranged, changed, tweaked and optimized along the way. For instance, the month of May completely threw me for a loop and I didn’t create all the content I had planned to. So that’s when the plenty of white space comes in handy because you will experience loopy times, but if you remain flexible and spontaneous, you’ll be more accepting to the fact that life – and tech – happens. And for when new laws – like the GDPR – come into effect that you have no control over, but still have to deal with.
Planning your day is obviously different than your year. Personally, I think it’s best to start planning your day right before turning off your computer the previous day and write down everything you want to accomplish the next day. Be realistic, you know approximately how much time you need for each task.
I’ve found that if I strategically and carefully plan my day ahead of time, then I won’t come into my office the next day and start to do things that won’t help me reach my ultimate goal. It helps me focus and stay disciplined and work more effectively. AND, it’s a lot of fun crossing things off my list that get me one step closer to reaching my goal. Win-Win!
Once you’ve written everything down, then prioritize your list by putting the most important tasks first.
And then plan out each day in working blocks of a certain amount of time that you can handle in one sitting. I personally like 2-hour blocks but you may work better on a school 45 mins. block system.
Also be sure to leave a little white space and don’t forget to put in your private responsibilities. I have my daughter’s appointments, family time, lunch and dog walks in my calendar, too. Yes, it may sound silly to block off an hour to ‘walk Nala’ or to eat lunch, but if I don’t, my calendar will become full of client sessions and then I’m really in trouble. Or worse, Nala suffers.
Oh, Nali Patali, everything will be OK. I will never neglect you!
A Few Words about Breaks
Breaks are SUPER important and yet, completely underestimated. Some companies require you to take breaks, others want to see you work 24/7. You’re your own boss though and let me just remind you that if you work non-stop, you will deplete your energy resources.
You may even burn out and you most likely won’t be happy. It’s been scientifically proven that taking breaks and well-earned vacations increase productivity, so make sure you take a short break – or long, whatever you need – after you finish each working block.
Did you know that turning off notifications and getting rid of all distractions along with taking breaks will increase your daily productivity?
#2: Do What Works Best for You
I talked about analyzing your data above to plan your next year, but this kind of analyzation is different.
The question I received yesterday was more out of worry about losing momentum and not about a quick and dirty solution, but I’d still like to address both, so let’s first talk about losing momentum.
How to Keep your Momentum
It’s wonderful to be in the groove with your marketing (e.g. you’re posting, your engaging, your writing, your attending shows, networking, etc.) but then as soon as something else pops up that needs your attention, you lose it and one day of not posting may turn into three days or a week and then once you realize it, you first get disappointed or even angry with yourself which blocks you from moving forward and getting back into the groove.
Try not to let that happen by giving yourself a break and planning for sh*t to happen, so that they aren’t unexpected.
How to Plan for Sh*t to Happen
I know this to be true: Sh*t will happen. You can be guaranteed to run into it at any time, any place and for whatever reason!
But because it happens to everyone, you’re never alone, so that’s the good news!
But because it’s so unpredictable, it’s a challenge to plan for it.
Here are a few things you can do:
Create enough white space on your calendar so that you can remain flexible and spontaneous.
Hire someone to help you with your marketing should be on your radar because you have to run your business and you can’t wear all hats all the time, especially when sh*t happens.
Create content in bulk – see tip #3 – to help you rock your marketing when you don’t have time.
Is Quick & Easy Possible in Marketing?
Just like with keeping up your momentum, it’s a natural wish of every single marketer and entrepreneur out there to have quick and easy marketing solutions that yield a ton of revenue at the tip of their fingers. Put in 20% effort to get 80% return, right? The ultimate dream of everyone working on any project everywhere!
Running a business, however, isn’t quick and easy. Ethical marketing also requires time for strategical planning and implementation.
Since I’m an advocate of creating an ethical marketing strategy to connect with your customers in a unique way, it’s hard – or rather impossible – for me to even give you quick and easy tips that will hit the nail on its head.
I first have to get to know your business because each business is different and there are no guarantees that what works for this company will work for you.
Secondly, it all depends on your strategy. Because if I were to say ‘do this or that’ and you’ve already done ‘this and that’, then we both would have just wasted our time. And as with above, you have to do what fits your company which will be completely different than your competitor’s.
I know what you’re thinking: “This doesn’t help, Jessica! I need an answer, dammit!”
So, what are some quick and easy marketing activities when you don’t have enough time?
My quick answer is: Analyze your marketing results of the past year and repeat your most successful marketing activity or campaign. It may not be a blog post or a mailing. It could be something completely different like setting an appt. to visit a potential client.
Of course, it depends on the activity. Pulling together a fashion show is not quick, but if that was your most effective activity in the past year, then maybe instead of organizing a new one because you don’t have the time or energy, you can think about putting together a special offer for the connections you made during that show and personally contact them to tell them about how your offer will help them grow.
If it WAS content, you can always recycle your content by reposting on social media or adding a new blog post to tie into a previous blog post.
Whatever you do, do what has worked out best for you in the past because you won’t have to think too much about it. You’ll already have your materials in place and you should be able to repeat the activity without much prep work involved. And, you’ll have the confidence that it’ll work.
Stay Connected to your Fans
An existing customer is worth more than a lead. Worth more of your time and energy and worth more financially because it takes more time and money to get new leads than it is to inspire your existing customers to buy.
So if you’re short on time at any particular moment, then you must be very careful with how you spend your time, so I encourage you to spend it wisely with your customers and nurture your current relationships. That’ll be quicker and easier than any new marketing activity to try to get new customers in.
#3: Create Content in Bulk
Because life happens, you’ll do yourself a big favor if you get your stuff ready ahead of time. When you can breathe again, block off time to create as much content as possible in advance so that you can schedule everything and not have to worry about it later.
In my free guide on how to create a marketing strategy, I talk about an editorial calendar in step #6 ‘Schedule Your Content’.
Your editorial calendar plans out the topics for your content so that you don’t have to think about it. I personally like to remain flexible in my editorial content because I listen to what my audience wants and needs and adjust my topics accordingly. This may – or may not – work for you though.
But just think, if you have a weekly vlog and can create 4 videos ‘at once’, you’ll be rockin’ and rollin’ for an entire month. Sure, it takes time to write 4 scripts, record and edit 4 videos and change your clothes 4x, but once you’re ‘in the groove’, you’re there for awhile and can chug ’em out like a pro.
But think about never having to say this again: ‘Oh no, I have to get a blog post out today, but I really have to get this tax stuff done first. I don’t have time for both, what do I do?’
Here’s a practical step-by-step approach on how to bulk your content by one of my favorite online marketing experts, Amy Porterfield. If you don’t know Amy Porterfield, get to know her now ’cause she rocks!
That’s all Folks!
That’s all I have for you now, but if you can just remember one thing: Not to dabble in your marketing because you feel you have to but instead to think strategically, even during those hectic times. Take a few minutes to just stop, breathe and think. You’ll be doing yourself a great service because it’ll help you be more productive and effective with your marketing. Please don’t miss that opportunity.