The first is to understand the role it plays in your business and/or life. You may have come across this grid before, but it’s always a good wake-up call.
Year End Tax Submissions
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Learning & Empowerment
Many phone calls
Some Phone Calls
TV, Gaming – time wasters & escape activities
Normally, we address what is urgent and not-important over what is important but not urgent. When we are trying to make changes to our marketing this typically falls into this “important, not urgent grid.” So the key is to first RECOGNIZE its IMPORTANCE and then obviously find a way to MAKE it URGENT which leads me to my second point.
Think about treating this new activity like you would an important client or prospect and schedule it in your Outlook (or Google, or whatever you use) calendar. If you had a meeting in your calendar with a client, or potential client, you wouldn’t cancel it to check emails or answer a call or to get paper for the printer. So start making appointments – real appointments that you keep and don’t allow distraction. Be careful though. Making one BIG appointment in the week (e.g. many, many hours) is dangerous for two very good reasons.
Reason 1: If you do have to cancel it (for something that falls in the urgent/important category) you have now lost an entire week’s worth of productivity.
Reason 2: Long hours for anything new might seem daunting, especially for a new habit, so it can make it unproductive and “un-fun.”
Look instead to breaking it down into multiple, manageable chunks over the week, then monthly and quarterly appointments as well.
Finally, the third way to ensure you will begin making headway on a new marketing activity is to stop trying to go it alone. Accountability also breeds urgency. Consider hiring a coach and/or announcing to your followers or friends your intended new path. You can also work with another like-minded peer and form an accountability partner model. This latter model is highly effective as long as the two partners involved state the ground rules ahead of time. In other words, look at how often the two of you want to communicate, what level of information you feel you should be sharing and what the consequences are if the deadlines are not reached and what the rewards are if they consistently are.
Here are few habits I intend to change to help me transform both myself and my marketing through more writing:
- Put “time to write” in my Outlook Calendar as a 1 hour appointment – 2 – 3 times a week and don’t cancel the appointments and don’t divert to phone or email…just as I would with a client.
- I personally enjoy writing on the weekend AWAY from the computer so commit to one hour of writing on the weekend
- Once a quarter – get away to the mountains and commit to 3 hours of writing while away.
- Start a “notes” file on my smartphone and tablet – and amalgamate thoughts/ideas when they come to me. I have a lot so if by the end of the week I don’t have at least 3 – 5 jotted down, I’m not doing this!
Feel free to hold me accountable.
So what new marketing habit do you want to integrate this quarter?