Tip 1: Plan Ahead
One of the biggest obstacles to successful marketing is the tyranny of the urgent. When you’re putting out fires all day, it’s tough to carve out time for proactive marketing efforts. That’s why it’s essential to plan ahead. Instead of waiting until the last minute to figure out what to write in your monthly marketing materials, try creating a yearly content plan. If that idea sounds intimidating, try this method to easily think up a year’s worth of ideas in an hour or less.
Then, set aside dedicated time each week to focus solely on marketing tasks. Block it off in your calendar, put the “do not disturb” sign on your door, and focus on nothing but marketing. Have a list of exactly what you’re going to accomplish during that time to help you maximize every second.
Tip 2: Set Deadlines
You know the #1 reason why marketing gets pushed to the backseat? Because it doesn’t feel urgent. Attaching a deadline to your next marketing campaign, sale or big project adds urgency, motivating you to stay focused and on task. If internal, self-imposed deadlines aren’t enough, make it public. Share your deadline with a trusted friend, co-worker, or even your clients so that you are forced to deliver on your promise. Once marketing becomes urgent, it gets bumped up on the priority list and stays at the top of your mind.
Tip 3: Use Repeatable Systems
Rinse and repeat marketing is a valuable strategy that all small business owners can benefit from. A sales funnel is a one example of a repeatable system that can save you time and money. The sales funnel we set up for clients is a simple system you create once and can continue using to generate leads and sales for years to come.
The best part is that this digital sales funnel is largely automated, allowing you to essentially build relationships with potential customers in your sleep.
We rely on a digital lead generator to draw in potential customers and automated email marketing to convert those leads into sales.
Another repeatable system you could add to your small business is using content calendars to streamline, schedule, and distribute content across multiple channels at once. Content calendars help small business owners stay organized and consistent, allowing them to plan out and prepare upcoming content weeks or even months in advance.
Tip 4: Tools Are Your Friend
Would you try to build a bookshelf without using tools? I’d guess probably not. Although you may be able to botch together something that resembles a bookshelf without using tools, the end result probably wouldn’t be very functional or efficient.
Marketing works the same way. Tools exist to help you do a better job faster. Avoiding tools because you don’t want to “take the easy way out” isn’t noble. It’s unnecessary, self-inflicted torture. You already have enough work to do. Take advantage of the available tools so that you can do more marketing in less time.
A few marketing tools that you should be using in your small business are:
- An email marketing system to automate communication.
- AI to generate ideas.
- A content planner to organize your campaigns.
- A project management tool to organize your team.
Here is a list of all the tools we use to make the most of our available time for marketing.
Tip 5: Put Social Media Last
Although social media can be a great, free tool to help you grow your small business, it can also be a massive time suck.
Before you jump into the wild world of social media marketing, get a few solid, repeatable marketing systems in place first. If you are already getting results with your sales funnel and your email marketing efforts, you can add on social media as a complement. However, the bulk of your marketing efforts should never be on social media alone.
Although racking up likes and follows is sometimes fun, and maybe even addictive, social media platforms are also highly competitive. It can take months, or even years, to build up enough of an audience to get real results.
This is largely because only about 10% of your followers will see your posts. On top of that, likes and followers often don’t become customers. So, instead of wasting your time trying to go viral on social media just because everyone else does, stick with tried and true strategies that work.
Tip 6: Invest in What Works
Are you relying on random marketing tactics to grow your business? When we talk to small business owners for the first time they often tell us tales of feverishly trying all the marketing tactics, just trying to figure out what works (what we call random marketing tactics).
Instead of random trial and error, you need a strategic and intentional plan. Try just one new marketing technique at a time. Then, track your results and analyze the data.
If you aren’t getting results, tweak your strategy, marketing copy or timing, and try again. If, after a few attempts, you still aren’t seeing the results you want, don’t be afraid to ditch the tactic and move on.
The last thing you want to do is invest your valuable time and money into marketing efforts that don’t deliver. Use data and frequent analysis to make sure you never waste good money on bad marketing.
Tip 7: Get Help!
As a small business owner, you can’t do everything yourself. Finding a trusted team member, partner, or maybe even a marketing director (like Guide MKTG) who can help take some of the marketing tasks off your plate will be a game changer for your business.
When hiring a marketing director, look for someone who has a proven track record of success (here’s ours). You want a marketing director who uses all six of these tips to save you time and get consistent results for your business.
Marketing is a crucial part of business success. If you are struggling to find time for marketing in your busy days, schedule a call with Guide MKTG today. We will take care of all your marketing needs so you’ll never have to worry about finding time for marketing again.