Marketers have a lot on their plates today. Between managing social media platforms, optimizing blog posts, and creating quality content, it doesn’t seem like there are enough hours in the day.
How do the top marketers regularly get it all done and leave time to learn new things?
Stop your overwhelming workflow today by adopting these 10 tricks used by the top digital marketers. Seriously, you’ll stop falling behind and start boosting your productivity with just a few minutes of work.
1. Consolidate Your Software
That’s right, there’s such thing as too much of a good thing. Software is supposed to save you time, but that’s not always the case…
As an online marketer, I bet you spend a lot of time moving between apps, programs, and websites. For instance, you might find your images for your blog posts on Unsplash.com, then jump into Dropbox to save them in your company brain, then go to Google Docs to type out an article, then use Wordable to migrate it to WordPress, then head to Coschedule to set your social messages over the next few weeks. Then it’s back to Trello to cross off items off your to-do list.
If it’s not obvious from the previous example, digital marketing is an endless back and forth process. And it’s easy to get lost when you’re dealing with many different types of programs. Take the time to consider which programs you truly need to run your department.
2. Set a Timer
No matter how focused you think you are — you likely still fall for temptations like checking your phone or hopping on social media. A good way to fight these distractions is to set a timer when completing tasks. If you have unlimited time, not only are you more likely to spend too much time doing one task, but you’ll also be prone to wandering thoughts (and mindlessly checking Instagram…).
Instead, use a timer to work on each task for a set amount of time before taking a break or moving on to another task. Utilizing employee scheduling software is a great way to monitor your time.
3. Stop Checking Your Email
Seriously… just stop.
A 2016 Adobe study estimates that we spend an average of 47,000 hours on email over our careers. That’s a crazy amount of time — imagine if you could drop that time by 50%. You’d have 2.5 years of your life back to work on other projects.
Checking your email is a tricky situation because it’s one of those tasks that seems productive on the outside, but it’s actually just another distraction. Set designated times for checking your email throughout the day, and avoid the temptation of checking it outside of those windows.
As long as you set your email windows at regular points in the day, you’ll still reply in a timely manner. But by not constantly interrupting your other tasks, you’ll see a major productivity boost.
4. Use Social Media Management Tools
As a marketer, you handle a lot of social media content. In the past, this might have meant manually scheduling posts on each platform and then re-checking to make sure everything was working properly. Today, that’s not the case.
5. Skip Meetings
Here’s another task that on the surface seems productive on first glance — a team meeting.
While many meetings seem productive, the research proves otherwise. 15% of an organization’s time is spent on meetings alone.
Wouldn’t this be better served by doing something else like actual daily tasks?
And since most meetings are informational, there is a lot of information that can easily be distributed in an email, Slack message, handouts, or some less time-consuming medium.
6. Automate with Chatbots
Lead generation is a time-intensive task.
At least, it was before the proliferation of Chatbots. While many marketers are afraid of trying Chatbot, or automated responders, they shouldn’t be worried. Today’s chatbots sound as authentic as a human voice. So this fear should not be a fear.
Artificial Intelligence has made big strides, and it’s already common to see huge companies using Chatbots on platforms like Facebook and Twitter.
7. Repurpose Old Content
Content marketing involves following trends in media, constantly thinking of new SEO keywords and generating topic ideas. This can be time-consuming and downright impossible when you already have so many tasks to do. Instead, repurpose your old content to make the most of what you already have. You can re-package existing content by turning old blog posts into emails or pulling quotes from your newsletter to make social media posts.
8. Learn When You’re Most Productive
Not everyone is productive all of the time. You’ll probably notice there are certain parts of the day in which you feel the most productive. Many of us try to work against these times, but that’s not always the best idea.
Identify these points in your schedule, then do as much work as you can during these highly productive times, and finally cut yourself some slack during your lower productivity hours.
9. Shorten Your Emails
Do you spend too long going back and forth on email? Like I mentioned earlier, emails can be a big distraction if you aren’t careful.
Learn how to limit your messages to only the most necessary parts. This isn’t the place for a drawn-out conversation. Keep your communication short, sweet, and to the point. Remember, these aren’t supposed to be Pulitzer Prize-winning novels. They’re just emails!
10. Forget Perfection
Finally, the best way to get more done is to simply let go of the idea of being perfect. As a marketer, you’re going to make some mistakes. That’s just part of the job…
Learning how to do a great, consistent job every time takes time and shows mastery of your craft. However, expecting yourself to be perfect every single time isn’t realistic and will ultimately lead to burnout.
Finally, remember to be kind to yourself. There are only so many hours in the day. These tricks will help you manage more tasks in less time, but there are no secret formulas for success. Just put in the work and reap the rewards.