4 Ways to “Make Time” for Marketing
By Katie Armatoski, Au.D
Audiologists are a unique breed, and I’m not just talking about how amazing, talented and funny we are. I’m talking about the unique set of skills we have to have to run a successful practice!
First of all, we work in healthcare so we’re constantly learning and honing our skills as medical professionals. But that’s only half the story. There’s also the entrepreneurship side. Unlike other healthcare professionals, we also have to run a business, hire team members, and market ourselves to find our own patients.
So, when someone tells me they don’t have time for marketing, I get it. I really do. But I will still challenge them to reconsider. Yes, it takes time. Yes, it’s one more thing on top of everything else. But without marketing, your business will slowly dwindle until the expenses of running your practice are no longer being covered by the work you’re doing.
According to the Institute for Marketing Science, companies who stopped marketing themselves saw that, on average, their sales fell 16% after one year and 25% after two years. That kind of drop off in revenue would be “game over” for most of us!
So, how do you make time for marketing when it seems like you have none? I have four tips that will help you if you’ve wondered how the heck you’re going to do it all.
Tip #1 – Jot Down Your Top Priorities
What gets planned gets done! Write down the tasks you want to do each week. Keep them small and manageable at first until they become a normal part of your routine. You want to set yourself up for success! For me, I like to write down small daily tasks. Each morning, I write down at least one task on my to-do list that I know will grow my business. It adds up!
I know a lot of audiologists like to block off one day each month as an “admin day” and get all of their marketing done for the whole month. I love this idea, too! You can schedule out social media content, emails, blogs, and anything else you need to get done that month. Just make sure to communicate this plan to your team so you don’t get booked with patients!
Tip #2 – Track Your Time & Delegate As Needed
When you do any kind of marketing task, make sure to track how long it takes. If a task takes too long — like social media, for example — it probably isn’t going to be worth your time. And that’s coming from someone who really believes in social media marketing! At the end of the day, you shouldn’t spend more than a few hours per month on social media content.
That being said, I don’t want you to completely skip it. Find someone who can take the task off your plate. Yes, you’re going to have to pay them, but if that’s going to allow you to use that time on something else, it’s worth the expense. Shameless plug: my Content Crew membership is PERFECT if social media is something you want some help with!
Tip #3 – 90 Minute Focus Sprints
I’m going to be honest with you, I hate this one the most but it *is* super useful. Scientists have discovered that the human brain can only focus for 90 to 120 minutes at a time. After that, we lose focus and the quality of our work severely drops off. So, they suggest working in 90 minute “sprints” followed by a 20-30 minute break.
Now, I know this kind of rigid time planning is tough when you have a schedule full of patients to see. But try to schedule in a sprint at least once a week. Maybe it means that you come in 30 minutes earlier in the morning or you block off a Friday afternoon. Just make sure you’re able to give all your focus to the task and you’ll be shocked how much you can get done in 90 minutes!
Tip #4 – Find an Accountability Partner
Yep, the old accountability partner trick. At the beginning of each week, I let someone else know what I have to get done. Then, at the end of the week, they check in to see if I actually did it. This one is super effective for me, but your mileage may vary. It just depends what kind of person you are. Personally, I don’t really have a hard time letting myself down. But I have a REALLY hard time letting someone else down. It’s just who I am!
If you’re like me, this is a really great way to “make time” in your week for the marketing tasks that need your attention. It’s all about finding what motivates you! And if you’re looking for someone to be your accountability partner, I’m here! Or, consider joining the Content Crew and you’ll have dozens of accountability partners who will be more than willing to help you!
Do you have a favorite productivity tip that I didn’t mention here? Submit a comment below and let me know what helps you get it all done!