At one time we have all procrastinated and waited until that very last moment to try and get something done. We are normally not happy with the results and the results tend to show that we rushed, didn’t think everything through, and almost certainly didn’t get the results we were expecting. We have seen this a lot and even with ourselves in years past where we only marketed our company when things were slowing down. We went into a panic mode saying we need to add a customer or we’re doomed (well not that bad but I think you understand).
We’ve all done it and we always say we’ll change “next time”. We have good intentions on not doing it again but it ultimately happens. We got tied up with the latest project, an influx of customers and things were going well. Keyword there is “were” going well. You’ve now gone a few days, weeks, even months where you haven’t reached your goals and sales targets.
The time to start pushing and promoting your business with marketing is not when things start going poorly but when they are going the way you expect. This for many sounds counterproductive as if things are going well why would you even want to be thinking of marketing and growing business? You are already reaching all of your goals and more work means you will be pushed harder than you might want to be. The simple answer is you never know when things are going to change. There are many factors that create change. Some, not all, are:
- Your competition comes out with a new product and everyone is jumping on board as they are doing this great marketing push
- The economy changes and you are not as important as you once were (sorry)
- Your competitors are actually working collaboratively together as you scared them from your last marketing and they couldn’t keep up so they started working together to “take you out”
- You may have lost a key person that you might not have realized is a key person and things changed
- You might be keeping a person on that is hurting your business that you didn’t realize
To fix this problem you need to market in both the good and bad times. You need to continue to take a step back, listen to your customers, and do things right. You need to keep track of where your customers are, what they are looking for, and adapt to change. You need to come out of that “box” that everyone over talks and start breaking the molds to get noticed. You need to let your culture come out and educate the world on why your solution is better than everyone else’s. Here are a few ways you can overcome marketing procrastination:
- Be creative and constant think creative. Take notes and use them as you go forward.
- Research your competition. Even as a leader in your industry your competition will have some really great ideas. I know ours does! :)
- Timing is critical. Plan months ahead of schedule. We work on our marketing four months out and adjust and tune it as we get closer to the launch date thinking of how and where we are marketing. If you are going to do a print campaign and mail it out make certain you give enough time to get everything printed, mailed, and arrive on time.
- Set time aside for marketing. Even with a company helping you need to sit down with them and go over short-term and long-term goals. You need to understand where you want to be (e.g. where is the current [not last] finishing line).
- Meditation is a great way of focusing and energizing. Sit and relax at your local coffee shop (if you like coffee). Take a walk around the block, in the woods, or even a drive.
- Turn off the technology around you (including your phone), shut the door, and work with a pad of paper and pencil (pen). This will allow you to focus without interruption. Also, put a sticky note on your door to not bug you for the next XX minutes.
- Cancel one of those meetings that are “nice” that truly aren’t needed and you can solve via a phone call (or email).
- Set aside a few hours each week to bring things “back to normal”. I set aside from 3-5pm every Friday to close out the week. I don’t work on projects but rather hitting everything I might not have had time to truly get done during the week.
When you set time aside you will be able to focus you will meet your deadlines more often (you still might stumble – just less often). You will feel better about yourself, more confident in what you are doing, and your marketing message will be more clear, concise, and delivered on your schedule.
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