I’ve been wanting to write this post for a while now, and of course someone else way cooler than me beat me to it. That seems to be the way it goes sometimes 🙂 After reading David Risley’s recent post about why most of us should probably start reading a lot less and actually start WORKING a bit more, I realized it was time to get this article published…it really is an essential topic.
This is a post about how to become highly productive
When it comes to running your business, there is always more to learn. If you’re new to internet marketing or blogging, it’s easy to get caught up in the hype of it all and to spend the next several months…or a year…or longer, just reading. Consuming new ideas, reading ebooks, subscribing to dozens if not dozens of dozens of blogs.
Education is essential…but what are you doing to actually BUILD YOUR BUSINESS? Research doesn’t count…
How a good education can actually make you fail
I’m big on education, and I make an effort to stay up on what other leaders in my business are saying, what projects they’re involved with, what new technologies and systems are being implemented to move things forward. You should do the same, of course. But here’s the thing…your education should augment your business…not interfere with your business. It should enhance what you do. It should help you take things to the next level. Many of us spend way too much time on education and not nearly enough time on production.
It’s entirely possible to get locked into “education-mode” and in doing so put your business on hold…this is suicide.
If you want to be dangerously profitable in your business, education cannot be your primary focus. And if reading this blog…or any resource out there…is causing you to NOT take action, you need to cut that out and get to work!
Productivity-killers to keep an eye on…
Here are a few important things that might be keeping you from being successful. Wait…hold on there. How can something important be a bad idea? Because when it comes to being effective in your business, you have to pick and choose. There simply isn’t time to do everything. This is why I wrote recently about how important it is to implement the 80-20 principle in your business. It’s also why I wrote recently about how important it is to get control over your schedule. Cutting off dead weight is crucial.
The big secret is that a lot of the things that may be keeping you from being productive are really cool things. There’s a lot of great stuff out there that you don’t have time to implement. Saying “no” to really cool opportunities is part of the game. Think of it this way: saying “no” to cool stuff is the only way you’re going to have time for the REALLY cool stuff. Keep an eye on these things:
- Reading blogs, articles, books, etc
- Commenting blogs, forums, etc
- “Networking” on Twitter, Facebook, etc – there’s networking, and there’s shooting the breeze. Be honest about what you’re doing on Twitter, and you’ll see most of your time is probably not focused. Yes, it’s fun and there’s NOTHING wrong with conversing on Twitter. In fact it’s important, and you should do it. But DON’T do it instead of taking care of production. Production comes first. Take care of business first, then hop online and yap your head off.
- Tweaking your site – yes, design is important. But there is no perfect design. Your layout or logo is not going to be what makes or breaks your site. If you think a rockin blog design is crucial, go visit this very popular blog and get back to me with your thoughts.
NOTE: I’m not saying to not do these things. In fact if you notice, I acknowledge they are very important. Here’s where to find balance…you just can’t do them INSTEAD of being productive. Reading a great book is important, but it doesn’t build your email list. Commenting on blogs or improving your logo design are important, but they don’t increase sales. Not directly anyway.
It’s ironic that so many new bloggers are struggling to even make $500 a month, yet they will spend half their time (or more) on non-productive things. Implementing what you already know is the true path to success in business. It’s hard to accept sometimes, but success is really not all that difficult to achieve…in blogging or anywhere. It’s just a matter of focusing on the right things.
It’s a fact, if you spend most of your time reading other people’s blogs, your own blog is never going to make it. You’ll know everything…and accomplish nothing.
Do this stuff first. Do everything else second.
Accomplish this stuff first, and then you can get down to the fun stuff (like reading my blog) 🙂
- Creating content – articles, guest posts, newsletters, sales copy.
- Creating products – videos, ebook copy, planning a seminar, whatever you’re selling, schedule ample time for creation of high-quality, valuable products and services for your customers.
- Creating marketing campaigns – ppc, email and other marketing that will directly bring targeted traffic to your site for conversion.
Making the decision to set aside important stuff and focus on production can be a hard call sometimes. There’s grey area, it’s true. But doing what actually brings in customers is what pays the bills, and without that, what are you studying up for anyway?
Here’s your assignment
I’m actually pretty serious when it comes to not reading my blog…or any others, until you’ve taken care of business first. So here’s your assignment: Create 10 pieces of content that will pull in business for you or help take you to the next level. What 10 pieces of content should you create? Anything you want…
- Pillar content for your new blog
- Articles for an article marketing campaign
- A 10 page report to use as a premium for your new email list
- 10 guest posts (I recommend this one)
- You get the idea
Create 10 pieces of content that will build your business, and don’t come back until you do. Get this done first, and trust me…the internet will still be there when you’re finished. I will be working on more totally awesome content for you in the meantime 🙂
Is there anything you’d add to the “non-productive” or “production” categories here? Do you disagree with any of this? Are you actually going to take me up on this assignment?