Talking to a few senior marketers recently, it’s been abundantly clear that the majority of marketers struggle with a little known ‘p’ in their day to day work. It’s none of the traditional ‘p’s that got drilled into us at uni all those years ago. You know the ol product, price, promotion mantra that forms the core of marketer’s responsibilities.
You see, the modern marketer has significantly more on their plate to manage and consider, than what was traditionally required. We’ve got the traditional channels of print, tv, billboards, then there is the digital space, around how our online tools support customers needs and then we’ve got social where each channel needs it’s own voice. Throw in high distraction environments of open working spaces where the international symbol of headphone wearing is a sign to leave me alone. Then there's continious connected devices throwing notifications all up in our screens.
All this contributes to this challenge of the new modern marketer ‘p’ challenge. The ‘p’ for productivity! You know the stats? Where we work productively for 7minutes of every hour. Then factor in the number of distractions in modern offices and well it’s surprising us marketers get anything done, hey?
So what are some tools and tips as marketers we can use to help us with this productivity issue?
- One thing I love is the pomodoro technique – typically used in software environments but the premise is to pick a task and work productively on that task for 25mins with 5 minutes breaks between them. After four pomodoros you typically take a longer 25 minute break.
Why it’s great? Well it means that any distractions can be dealt with in the break periods. You know that email notification you just got! Well deal with it in the next 5 minute break. Cleared from your mind – continue to focus. Done! I’ve used it a tonne, particularly when trying to focus on high important tasks. We’re even trialing it here at Blue Eye Deer among our team for the first few hours of the morning.
- Collect your marketing tools in a central environment. Whether it’s looking for inspiration, doing research or managing your productivity templates. Having them centralized goes a long way to minimizing unproductive tasks of searching, remembering where they were last left and so on. Trust us, these can be time killers for sure. For example, Here’s a content marketing repository that we access all the time for keeping inspired and productive. You're welcome!
- Utilise lists for project tasks. We talk about it all the time here but it’s about the process and ensuring that repeatable tasks can quickly be reviewed and confirmed – rather than thinking "mmm what needs to be done next?" Take this check list for example for managing an inbound marketing campaign. It’s quick easy and ensures nothing gets missed. Job done! Next.
This 'p' of productivity doesn't need to be the straw that breaks the camel's back. By utilising systems and tools the encourage heuristic behaviour (simplifying the way we think and do) can go a long way to making you a more effective marketer. Keeping you productive and giving you the time you need to be more stategic.
For a great read on productivity and performance check out Tim Ferris' book on the Four Hour Work Week