We all procrastinate. I do. I procrastinated about buying a pair of dress shoes that fit me better. I’ve continued to procrastinate for about 3 months now while continuing to wear the ill-fitting shoes. Right now I’m procrastinating about calling the podiatrist. My feet have been hurting lately. But I start to imagine all the machinations I’ll have to go through to get there, get examined, get treated, get billed and then go back. I’m hoping my feet will get better. They won’t. I’m hoping the shoes will stretch out. They won’t. But still I procrastinate.
I also procrastinate about picking up the cleaning, starting my tax returns, and cleaning my desk.
Do you procrastinate about anything? You’re human, so probably. Do you procrastinate about marketing? If you are anything like the hundreds of clients I’ve worked with, you put off some or all of the following:
Getting focused – creating a strategy
Writing marketing materials
Joining networking groups
Asking for referrals
Setting up speaking engagements
Preparing a presentation
Calling past clients
Developing a sales approach
Creating a database
Sending thank-you notes
Sound familiar? Have you ever asked yourself why you put things off you know you should do? Of course you have. But if you ask yourself ‘why’, your subconscious will leap up in defense and create all kinds of rationalizations to answer that ‘why’. The validation usually goes like this. “I must be putting off my marketing because I’m just not a marketing type” or “These things won’t work anyway so why bother.” You just reinforce your old beliefs.
Instead, ask yourself empowering questions: “How can I find a way to do this” or “what could I gain by moving forward with this?” or “who knows how to do this better than I do who could give me some ideas where to start?”
All of these questions work to move you into action, which is a whole lot better than moping around feeling bad about not doing your marketing.
So let’s try to answer some of your new and empowering questions.
“How can I find a way to write some marketing materials?”
Start collecting the promotional pieces others send you. Read what the content says, pay attention to the layout of pieces. Keep everything whether it’s a piece that you like or not. Now make a list of the attributes that appeal to you and that you think will appeal to your target audience and a list of those attributes that don’t.
“I know that I should keep in touch with previous clients. What could I gain by moving forward with this?”
Calling past clients and sending thank-you notes is a powerful way to maintain your relationships. I know, I know, you’re thinking that it would take you too many weeks to phone everyone with whom you’ve previously worked. And you’re right – but who says you have to do it all at once? Try phoning just 5 folks a day. We all have time to phone 5 people. The same with cards and letters. Send thank you notes to people with whom you’ve just worked and a personal letter to those with whom you’d like to work again. Just 5 a day. Just 5 a day means that 1250 people will hear from you this year that didn’t last year. If that doesn’t motivate you how about this:
The cost to reacquire a previous client is a mere fraction of the cost to acquire a new client.
“How can I find the time to write an article?”
Writing articles can be a terrific marketing tool. When I suggest this to my ‘non-writing’ clients they always tell me the same thing. I just stare at my computer and it just stares back. If you fit this category try talking your way through it. Find a topic that interests you. Then, while speaking into a recorder, talk to your associate, your spouse, or dog on the subject. Use the tape to create your article outline – and viola! No more blank stare!
If you need more help, drop me an email and I’ll make a note in my calendar to remind you about your marketing goals.
Best of luck in your marketing endeavors,