It’s August. For most, this is the slowest month of the year, with every email resulting in double the amount of out of office replies, half-day Fridays, leisurely lunches (cue the Jack Johnson soundtrack). It’s also the ideal time to focus and organize so that your September is a productive one.
Here are 6 things you can do this month for an on point September.
Take control of your inbox. Years ago we worked with a client who had an extremely dysfunctional senior management team. We found that one of the (many) reasons for this was the way they were communicating, including email communication. We implemented an email management system for them that I still use today: Delete, Do, Delegate, Defer (not our original idea). It’s simple and effective and works like this:
- If it’s not relevant or important, delete it immediately
- If it’s a task that you can complete in under two minutes, do it right away (it’s surprising how many tasks you can accomplish in under two minutes)
- If it isn’t an item you need to manage yourself, delegate it (obviously, this is more realistic for more senior level folks)
- If it’s a task that you need to handle yourself, but will take more than two minutes, defer it. This can be done several ways. In Outlook you can create a task, which basically puts it on your calendar to do at another time. Or you can simply add it to your personal to do list.
Revisit your 2017 marketing goals. You’ve got a good four months to get them accomplished – plenty of time to move the needle! If you’re unsure about how to determine if you’re actually meeting your goals, read this and this. Don’t be afraid to make adjustments to your goals or the campaigns you’ve developed to achieve them. What was realistic in January might not be the case in August. That’s okay. Adjust to best set yourself up for success.
Repurpose existing content. If vacation schedules are getting in the way of your or your client’s productivity, look through content you have on hand already and figure out how it can be tweaked to be used again. Minor edits can transform a blog post into a new bylined article or update the headline and post it again on social media channels.
Make a content calendar for the remainder of the year. September 5th is not the day to start thinking about your content calendar for the remainder of 2017. Today is the day. This is a task that often gets rushed, yet is one of the most important for any content marketing campaign. Give it the time it needs to set yourself up for success.
Set up a lunch or drinks. Just like you, others’ schedules are likely lighter this month. Reach out to old contacts for lunch or drinks and see what collaborative opportunities may arise. It’s also a great time to get a little client facetime in before schedules start to fill back up again. Rather than your regularly scheduled call, make this month’s update over a glass of rosé.
Listen to a recorded webinar. Most membership associations keep recordings of past webinars on their website as a member benefit (like the Legal Marketing Association). In addition, some free services, like BeaconLive, have a solid library of webinars. Slow summer days are a great time learn something and perhaps spark a little inspiration for the fall.
September will be here before we know. This year make it the least stressful month of the year.
Jessica Sharp is Principal of Maven Communications. Follow her on Twitter @jessicagsharp.
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This post was written by Jessica Sharp