Being your own boss can be great, but finding the time to do everything that needs to be done can certainly be a hassle. Unfortunately, when we get backed up, the little things we do every day to grow our business can take a back seat to the “bigger picture” of tasks that need completing. The good news is, if you can spare as little as ten minutes a day, you can manage to squeeze in at least one marketing task that will help keep your company moving forward.
- Write a thank you note to one person who’s helped you or your business in the last month. While it may not seem like much, a little gesture like this not only keeps you on their mind, but also makes someone else’s day just a bit better.
- Find two great tweets on Twitter to retweet. Value is the currency on social platforms like Twitter. Sharing content that others find useful will help your followers consider you authority in your area of expertise.
- Read a blog post thoroughly and then leave an engaging comment. Just like a few minutes by the watercooler can help improve morale, a few minutes engaging with the online community can help boost awareness of your company.
- Brainstorm five ideas for blog posts or articles. There’s nothing worse than having time to write something and then not being able to come up with ideas. Avoid this by using your in-between time to scour blog post ideas.
- Take one idea from your brainstorming notes and create an outline for a post. If you are doing the tip above, you should have a mega list of article ideas. During some downtime, spend a few minutes outlining one of those articles. Not only will it help you feel more productive, but you’ll also spend less time when writing the article down the road.
- Visit three other companies’ Facebook pages and like two posts on each one. Even better, take some time to comment. Facebook is an easy place to think about your page and only your page. However, the pages with the most interactive communities on Facebook know they need to network to reach similar audiences.
- Find one great commenter and check out their website. People who take the time to comment are active marketers, making them an ideal audience if their interests align with your product or services. If you take the time to show an interest in their work, more than likely, they’ll return the favor.
- Look over the last year’s revenue reports and identify your best sales months (or your worst). Knowing when you need to prep for down months, or need to amp up resources for the good ones, can help improve your income across the board. This can also jumpstart the idea train for upcoming marketing tasks that may need to be done, especially for the holiday season.
- Email a client and ask how they’re doing – no sales talk, no ulterior motive. People like to do business with people they like. The best way to be liked is to be genuinely interested in your clients and what they are doing. Keeping up communication, especially when you don’t want or need something from them, helps solidify that you care about their needs. This is a core aspect to word of mouth marketing.
- Google yourself and your company to identify places you’re doing well and also areas that need improvement. These types of tasks are best done when you actually only have a few minutes to spare. It allows you to get an idea of your online reputation, without spending too much time getting distracted. Make some notes of areas that could use some improvement and schedule some time to work on those later.
- Make sure your LinkedIN profile is up to date. With so many professionals using LinkedIN to network, making sure your profile is updated with your current information is critical. If you have some extra time, look over your network and identify people who you might want to get to know better.
- Participate in the Google Groups you’re a part of or find a new group to join. While you may not be using Google+, Google Groups does offer an effective way to communicate with other people who are in your same interest groups. This can be a great way to make connections with people you wouldn’t have otherwise met.
- Answer a few questions on Quora. Nothing establishes your expertise quite like your ability to effectively answer questions. Quora is an excellent place to do this. Take a few minutes and search for topics you know well and answer any related questions.
- Network on LinkedIN Groups. Like Google Groups, LinkedIN Groups are a great place to open up communication with people you may not have otherwise met. Join a few groups that are relevant to your business, and add value to the conversations taking place there.
- Send out a newsletter or email to your customers with some handy tips. This doesn’t have to be a formal enewsletter. You can send a quick message to your clients or customers with some quick tips or ideas that are relevant to their needs. Make it a weekly or regularly scheduled action to receive the best results from your time.
- Update one thing on your website. Your website could possibly be your most overlooked piece of marketing material. Once it’s done, it’s easy to just forget about it. However, it’s the first place new clients or customers will look to learn more about you. Make sure it’s up-to-date and that there aren’t any obvious errors by giving it a quick look over every now and then.
- Contact local nonprofits to see if your company can donate or help in any way. Helping nonprofits may not be the best idea initially for your bottom line, but it can generate goodwill and your work with the nonprofit can be used for some extra publicity and marketing. It’s definitely a great example of a win/win situation.
- Think of a sale or special that you can run in the next month. Determine the resources you’ll need to put into place to make it successful, including advertising, available stock, extra employees, etc. Set up a timeline for implementing the sale.
- Find an inspiring TED talk and share it on one or more social media platforms. Be sure to write a bit about why you’re sharing and encourage your followers to discuss the video with you. This is a great way to start meaningful interaction.
- Check out your “people you may know” suggestions on LinkedIN and your “who to follow” suggestions on Twitter. The algorithms that both of these features use to find potential new followers gets refined the more you use them, so taking advantage of them now will make sure that you continue to get good suggestions in the future.
As you can see, none of these things will take very long by themselves. In fact, it should be easy to knock one out right before lunch, or maybe before you pack up to head home. If you have extra time, just pick another task and do that as well! A meeting or call gets canceled and you find yourself with an extra half hour? Sit down and choose three things off of this list to take care of!
Do you have any quick tasks that you like to fit into your schedule? Share your ideas with us in the comments section below.