Marketing is damn hard. It’s even harder when you run a business solo; you’ll never find the time to market, so it doesn’t get done until it’s too late.
I’ve had a lot of problems marketing over the past several months. The root cause is because I haven’t been able to get myself into a habit of marketing a little at a time. I realized, to make my business succeed, I need to change my marketing process so I can tolerate it and even (gasp) have fun with it.
To con myself into marketing, I related it to something I enjoy; playing a game. In every game you try to get from one level to the next using a set of defined rules.
My Marketing Game
To build my marketing into a game, I needed some simple rules and a few levels. These rules are meant to build on each other and to motivate me to move to the next level quickly.
- Each levels get progressively harder
- Reward for completing each level
- Reward for beating the game
- Level timer, all levels get reset every Monday
Level One actions:
- Write blog entries for 2 hours per week (typically 1-3 posts)
- Business branding for 1 hour per week
- Ask for referrals at the end of every project, successful or declined
Level Two actions:
- Comment on 1 new blog every week
- Work on an Open Source project for 2 hours per week
Level Three actions:
- Work to create an online services, 8 hours per week
- Get published (yes, it’s vague because I don’t know the first steps yet)
How I’m doing
I’ve been playing this game for a few weeks now and I’m starting to see an improvement with my marketing. Instead of putting my marketing off, I’m starting to spend a little time here and there to slowly grow. As long as I can keep this up, I’ll be able to meet this month’s goal.
So, what are your rewards for each level?
Peter: Since I’ve been so bad on keeping up my marketing, I only have a reward for Level One right now. If I can keep passing Level One throughout March, I get to take a much needed 4 day weekend in April. Not everyone gets to take off for El Salvador for business ;)
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