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Where to Focus Your Marketing Efforts If You Only Have 5 Hours a Week

There’s a misconception that marketing a business is always time-consuming. Not so. If you know where to put your efforts, it’s completely possible to handle the essential marketing tactics in five hours or less a week. Here’s where you should be putting your energy.

Social Media

Managing your social media accounts is a breeze once you streamline the process. Each of the following can be done in an hour or less.

Following New People

Set a goal of new people to connect with each week, such as:

  • 50 on Twitter
  • 10 on LinkedIn
  • 50 on Instagram

Start with the people who are following you. Quickly scan each profile to see if they fit your target demographic. If so, follow them back. Next, search for hashtags that relate to your industry, and follow people using them there. You can also follow journalists or bloggers whose content you like to read.

Scheduling Updates

With the right social media scheduling tool, you can create all your updates and shares for the week (or longer) in minutes. Aim for a mix of shared content (yours and others), company updates and thought-provoking questions. Pepper in videos and images to pique interest.

To shave off the time you spend on finding great content to share, use content curation tools like these to quickly find the kinds of articles your audience wants to read.

Responding to People

This is one activity that needs to happen in real time, so carve out time each day to see who’s sent you messages or referred to your content on social media so you can respond accordingly.

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Email

Using email automation, you can continue to engage new prospects over time. 

Start your email series with an offer, such as a free whitepaper. Then set up a series of emails that will follow that initial download email. You can include informational articles, product comparisons, videos, special offers, et cetera.

Once you create the copy for these, use your automation software to set up the emailing schedule, such as “Email one is sent four days after Download Email.”

You can also create email templates for common customer service inquiries, such as:

  • Where’s my product?
  • How do I return a product?
  • I’m unsatisfied with my product

Public Relations

Your PR strategy can be continually nurtured with a little effort each week.

Managing Media Contacts

As I’ve said before, you can’t just connect with a journalist when you’re desperate to get your news out there. It requires ongoing nurturing and maintenance. So each week, target one new journalist.

Follow her on social media. Share her content. Comment on her articles. Do this with one additional journalist each week until you have a stable list of media contacts that you’re actively engaging.

Writing Press Releases

Once you’ve written one press release, the others are easier to create. You can use the initial one as a template and keep the boilerplate and format the same (or try these press release templates PR Newswire has put together). As you come up with new press release topics, add them to a spreadsheet so you never lack ideas.

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Content Creation

Content marketing is another area that can seem overwhelming, but if you continually work on it, it won’t take over your life.

Blogging

Keep a spreadsheet of blog topics so that when you’re ready to write, you’re not challenged with blogger’s block. Write a few articles a week and schedule them in advance. That way, if you get busy one week, you already have content lined up and ready to be published

Other Types of Content

Other marketing content like whitepapers and ebooks may take longer to plan, so chip away at them each week. If you know in Q4 you want to release a big whitepaper, the planning and creation needs to happen in Q2.

By working on your marketing a little at a time, you can have a steady stream of new and innovative strategies to reach your customers.

Make the most of your time with measurement.

When it comes down to it, the marketing activities you should dedicate time (and budget) to are the ones that drive results. Discover which metrics matter most by downloading Avoid the Numbers Trap & Give Your Clients Meaningful ReportsThis free guide can help agencies and brand marketers alike prove (and improve on!) their value.

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About Susan Guillory

Susan Guillory is the president of Egg Marketing & Communications, a marketing firm specializing in content writing and social media management. She frequently blogs about small business and marketing on sites including Cision, Forbes, AllBusiness, Small Business Trends, The Marketing Eggspert Blog and Tweak Your Biz. Follow her on Twitter @eggmarketing.

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