Note from Diane: If you are a Mum with young children or someone who is trying to build a business in part-time hours, late nights or at the weekend you will know that finding large blocks of uninterrupted time to focus on your business is a luxury.
Wouldn't it be great if you could just lock yourself away for 8 hours a day, 5 days a week to focus on your business?
Well, that is simply not practical if you work from home and have a young family. Or if you have a full time job and it can get very frustrating when you find yourself getting further and further behind with what you have “to do.”
Your day starts out with a pretty full agenda when you have the school run to do in the morning (and again in the afternoon), the house to clean and organise, errands to run, shopping to do, meal plans and cooking to plan and do, taking care of your family and loved ones, appointments to keep, meetings to squeeze in somewhere, blogs to write, emails to send, letters that need to be written, adverts that need to be created, social media pages to be updated and .. and…and … it's never ending.
If that sounds like you too, you may need to hit the “TIME OUT” button and rethink exactly HOW you are going to make sure you are doing more of the IMPORTANT things in your business more of the time and less of the usual day-to-day “stuff” that zaps your time.
The answer to the problem is batching.
Feature Article:Why Batching Saves You Time And Makes Your More Money
Get Serious About Building Your Business
If you are serious about growing your business you are going to need to prioritise business building tasks (such as writing and placing adverts, developing your sales funnel, creating products and services that solve people's problems etc) ABOVE some of the more mundane tasks that are zapping your time.
Spend a little time identifying exactly how long it takes to do the tasks that you probably think are taking up all your time and giving you the feeling of “being busy” but not really getting anywhere.
The phone won't start to ring with new clients unless you place and advert somewhere where someone can see it.
Your email list isn't going to grow on it's own, it's going to take a little bit of work to create a free offer and set it all up on your website.
The most effective way to find more time in your schedule is to batch up tasks that you tend to spread out over the week into one or two sessions.
For example if you write 2 blog posts per week, there really is no reason why you can't do them back to back (especially if you are using a blog planner to plan your content in advance).
You can even set yourself an appointment per day to check and answer any emails, write letters etc and then post everything on the way to the afternoon school run.
3 Easy Ways To Get More Done When You Batch Up Your Tasks
1. Phone calls and emails are two of today's biggest distractions, so you will want to manage them efficiently. Use filters in your INBOX to allow only the most important emails into your inbox.
Choose a time of day (preferably in the early part of the afternoon) to go through your inbox and either read & action straight away, schedule for later or archive straight away anything that is not contributing to your day, your business or your life.
Your inbox is someone else's agenda on how you should be managing your time and you can easily find yourself losing valuable hours getting lost down “rabbit holes” hiding inside some emails.
2. Managing the book keeping, accounting, invoices and filing part of your day.
I see a lot of business owners who tell me that these tasks are the ones that zap their time during the day. The key is to manage them all daily (don't let them build up, outsource them to a book keeper if you really find you are getting nothing else done and have a filing system that can literally be done in minutes per day.
Software like QuickBooks Pro 2015 (PC) is your best friend here and a well organised filing system, a PAID stamp and a coloured pen should be all you need to tackle this job in less than half an hour a day.
Using software like SAGE for your payroll will have you whizzing through that task too and when you sync up the HMRC Government Gateway your submissions are sent electronically today cutting down on paperwork.
If you find this task is too intrusive of your productivity time in the day, you'll find you speed through it if you tackle it at night, with no distractions.
3. Plan your content out for the month ahead and batch writing articles and creating content into one or two days per week.
This single activity should free up the time you need to focus on working ON your business not IN your business. Spend an hour at the end of every month brainstorming and researching ideas for topics for the month ahead.
With blog writing, creating content on a regular basis and writing articles, the more you do, the quicker you get. Practise is everything. What takes the time is when you are writing about something you perhaps needed to research a little first but each blog post shouldn't take more than a hour or two to create once you hit your stride.
So if you create 2-3 blog posts per week, that should only ever take up one morning or one afternoon when you batch your time and get stuck into the task in hand, not stopping until the work is done.
Using The Time You've Saved By Batching Wisely
Once you have better control of your time, you will naturally find more time to do more of the business building tasks that not only make the biggest difference but ultimately have the potential to make you more money.
- Facebook Adverts
- Creating info products that solve people's problems
- Focusing on developing your sales funnel
- Writing email follow up campaigns for increasing sales
- Increasing conversions.
- Improving your copy writing skills and building your skills.
- Get serious about growing your business.
- Batch up time zapping activities into one or two sessions per week to find more time for other things.
- Stay on top of your book keeping on a daily basis (or outsource it if your budget allows)
- Phones and emails are there to assist you with managing your communication effectively, don't let them run your day.
- Make full use the time you save batching to focus more time, effort and creativity on building your email list. It will pay you back x10 in the long run.
To your online marketing success!
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