We have just wrapped up our Annual Small Business Internet Marketing Study. Again this year we see that business owners are cutting back the amount of time they are spending on social media and blogging. This year, 44% of the respondents said they spend less than 30 minutes a day focused on online marketing.
That isn’t a lot of time to produce one blog post a week, update social media status and produce a monthly email. However, that is all the time many business owners have to spare, especially when the phones are ringing and everyone is busy.
Unfortunately, we know most businesses will ebb and flow, with busy and quiet times. If you wait until things slow down to work on marketing, it takes too long to ramp back up again.
So how do you fit more time into your schedule to work on your marketing? Well, you could wake up 30 minutes early. But, if you are like me and hit that snooze alarm multiple times, that idea is just not going to work. Fortunately, there are lots of ways to reduce the time you spend on content marketing without reducing the quality of what you produce.
Here are some of my favorite content marketing time-saving tricks.
- Plan ahead. Use a content calendar to map out the topics you want to write about. Think in terms of themes where you can use slightly different versions of the same information on social media, in your email newsletter and on your blog.
- Take advantage of tools like Google Alerts to deliver the latest information on a specific topic.Then file the information until you are ready to start writing.
- Write in the slow times. Nothing is worse than trying to be creative on demand. Don’t wait until you need an article to write it. When things are slow take time to write a few blog posts that will be topical during your peak season, schedule them to run when you know you will be too busy to write something new.
- Schedule status updates. Tools like Hootsuite, Tweetdeck and Buffer allow you to schedule your social media updates in advance. You will still have to hop on Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter to respond to comments and questions, but having a few general interest posts mixed in with the real-time updates keeps you in front of prospects. Just remember if you do use these tools you’ll need to check your content if things change.
- Reuse your newsletters. Even the best campaigns are only read by 25% or 30% of your audience. If your email program is more than a year old, go into your archive. Find a newsletter which contains information which is still relevant. Change the subject, maybe update a call to action and send it out again. You shouldn’t do this all the time, but resending good content instead of skipping an issue keeps you in front of your audience, and gives more exposure to good information many people may have missed.
The bottom line is you need to spend time on your marketing even when you are busy, if you want to stay that way. If you don’t have the time, maybe you need to invest in finding someone to hep you. That might mean expanding your team or finding an outside resource to lighten your load.
Curious about what else we learned this year? Checkout our 2017 Internet Markeitng Report.