It’s something that comes up a LOT. You have a million ideas of things you’d like to do, to get more customers & grow your business.
But it feels impossible to find the time to do them.
We had this exact conversation yesterday!
Yesterday, we spent a couple of hours with a truly brilliant local business. The business owner is lovely – she works incredibly hard, running two retail stores. They deliver great products & expert service.
They have capacity within their existing team to grow sales by at least 10% – and 50%, in some areas of the business.
They have tons of ideas about how to get more people into their stores, to drive this growth.
But the day-to-day running of the business takes SO much time, that it’s almost impossible to find the time to get the marketing done.
So how DO you create the time to do more marketing – and grow your business?
Especially if you don’t have £25,000 of spare cashflow, to employ a marketing person?
A long time ago, we discovered the concept of “90 Minutes”. It’s a core belief of Nigel Botterill, who runs the Entrepreneur’s Circle.
The idea is that you find 90 minutes, every day, to work ON your business, rather than IN your business.
And you spend your 90 Minutes ONLY doing activities to get more customers.
You might spend your 90 Minutes on your marketing – like Facebook ads, email marketing, direct mail, your newsletter or Google Adwords. It might be creating new content & products – lead magnets, crafting new packages to upsell or increase margins.
Whatever you do during your 90 Minutes, it must NOT be the day-to-day client fulfilment stuff – but actively working to grow your business.
Now – we have been religiously doing our 90 Minutes for many years. In truth, it doesn’t happen every day. On other days, we’ll dedicate several hours or a full day to working on the business, rather than in it.
And here’s what we’ve learnt.
- You HAVE to guard your 90 Minutes like your life depends on it.
Because it does.
For most of us business owners, your life DOES depend on the success of your business. Certainly your quality of life – where you live; how you live; and the time you can spend with your family.
So your whole team – and your family – HAVE to understand that you are not to be disturbed during your 90 Minutes. Put your phone on flight mode. Close all internet tabs, except the page you’re working on. Log out of your emails.
You need everyone on board & understanding why this time & space is critical.
But unless you are the Prime Minister – or an on-call surgeon – there is very little in this world that cannot wait for an hour and a half.
The results from focused effort are huge. And you simply cannot focus – and get stuff done – if you’re letting yourself be distracted.
2. Do your 90 Minutes when your brain is best.
For me, it’s first thing. I like mornings. I’m lucky that our offices are 5 minutes from home, so I’m usually at my desk by 7am.
Every week day, between 7am – 9am, I work ON the business.
I do not check my emails, or social media, before I begin. No distractions.
And every day, I use this time to grow our business:
- I create new blog posts (like this one!) & update our website, adding value for people when they find us;
- I record weekly video emails – one for our clients, and one for our full list, to add value for them;
- I write new sales letters, for people we’d really love to work with;
- I create new packages, to help really add value for our clients;
- I work on our printed newsletter;
- I work on our referral campaigns;
- This morning I worked on setting up our new Facebook group (not to be confused with wasting time on Facebook!).
These are the core things that work for us. For you, it might be different marketing activities. But the same principles apply.
Then, at 9am, the phone starts ringing. The building fills up with people. Clients start arriving.
And there is no way I would get half as much done without this dedicated, focused time.
3. It doesn’t have to be mornings.
My brain switches off around 3pm. That’s why I do the important stuff first thing. My brain works best then.
If you’re a night-time person, do your 90 minutes then. It’s about knowing yourself, and when you’re most productive.
If you’ve got to get the kids to school – try 9am to 10:30am. Stick a big fat ‘DO NOT DISTURB UNLESS THE WORLD IS ENDING’ sign on your office door.
Make it clear that you are not free until 10:30. Get your team to hold your calls. It sounds extreme but once they get into the habit, there’s nothing that can’t wait.
If you’re still being disturbed, work from home & go into the office later.
Just do whatever it takes to get the time you NEED to make more marketing happen, to grow your business.
4. And if finding time to do marketing really DOES seem impossible…
Try smaller chunks of time. You won’t be as productive – but any focused time is better than none.
Get help. Track how you’re spending your days. What tasks are you doing that someone else could do, to free up time for you? Not just in your business, but at home too.
And we can help too. I don’t want this blog to be a sales pitch. BUT we do understand that it can feel impossible to get the time to market & grow your business. And if that’s true for you, then you can always use our time to do it for you.
The weird thing is, doing your 90 Minutes feels really selfish at first – telling everyone to not disturb you, on pain of death.
But investing time to market + grow your business – so you can bring more home for your family – is probably the least selfish act of all!
Until next time
[contact-form to=”firstname.lastname@example.org” subject=”LEAD: Blog – 90 Minutes 12th April 2018″][contact-field label=”Name” type=”name” required=”1″ /][contact-field label=”Email” type=”email” required=”1″ /][contact-field label=”Struggling for time?! We can help! What’s your biggest challenge? :)” type=”textarea” required=”1″ /][/contact-form]