Have you noticed how fast things are changing? It’s easy to get overwhelmed when it comes to marketing strategies, social media updates, and staying up with what customers want. And now mobile devices require changes in the way your messages are delivered.
I think many professionals welcome the shift in marketing strategies away from advertising to inbound marketing because by creating great, helpful and relevant content you get to engage with customers in online conversations. It’s more human, isn’t it?
But whoa there! You probably didn’t realize how much more work this means for you and your staff! It takes a whole lot more brain space to write great, helpful and relevant content. Just updating social media sites requires thinking strategically and intelligently, otherwise you can get in hot water quickly! (i.e. McDonald’s recent Twitter faux pas.)
That’s why I get a lot of requests for help these days: it’s a huge shift in marketing strategy and it’s having an impact on the people who are tasked with creating good content that drives results.
To piggy-back off of my last post on Procrastination, what that means is greater need for personal management, for taking steps to manage stress and overwhelm, and to keep procrastination at bay.
Here are four things to ignore when you feel overwhelmed by tasks:
- The clock and the calendar: Don’t pressure yourself by thinking about how little time is left. When you start breaking down a project into small steps, you’ll discover how much time is realistically required. We sometimes have a poor conception of how much time it requires to complete a task. Rather than panicking at the thought that you only have a week to complete a project, break down the parts of the task into real time and you may find through this process that it is merely a three-hour job.
- Your stress: There are a number of techniques one can use to deal with anxiety: deep breathing, progressive relaxation, visualization, physical exercise, meditation, humor and music. Engage in these after you’ve already completed a part of the task. In fact, you can use some of these activities as a reward for partial task completion.
- Distractions: Turn off all music, TV, cell phones and the Internet, and try not eating or drinking until you get going. If caffeine helps, fine, but preparing it can also provide an excuse from actually working. Too much coffee can make you easily distractible. You want to become narrowly focused on your goal completion, so avoid letting anything interfere or slow you down. Studies show that one hour of uninterrupted time is worth three hours of time with distractions. Shutting down these distractions will help you get more done, faster.
- Excuses: The mind is amazingly clever at times, and it will sometimes sabotage what you really want. Let’s face it, we humans have competing commitments, priorities, and multiple demands. If you find yourself coming up with good reasons to procrastinate, remember that good reasons make for good excuses, but they’re still excuses and will stop you from doing what’s needed and what’s important. For example, “I’m not in the mood for this,” can be reframed as, “I’m not in the mood, but if I start with one small part, I’ll get inspired.”
What do you think about all the shifts that are happening? I don’t think advertising is going away, but it sure is changing. Only the nimble survive. I heard an interesting quote from tennis legend Billie Jean King this weekend:
“Stress is a privilege.”
Think about that. Let me know if we need to talk!