Focus your effort to get more results

by Michele on November 28, 2012

Solopreneurs may improve results by focusing on fewer thingsOne of my clients said the most brilliant thing to me, and I just had to take some time to write about it.

The statement was:

“I want to do less but do it better.”

Wow.  Can you fit any more wisdom into one sentence?

There are so many things we “have” to be doing to grow a business.  Just in marketing alone there’s Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, video, speaking, email, SEO, etc.  The list goes on and on.  It can feel like a treadmill just to get to what you already know about, and then another marketing “must do” pops up.

The thing is, for all of these areas there’s a minimum level of effort you need to expend to make it worth it.  If you’re on some forum just flailing around, randomly posting and hoping business magically comes your way you’re in for a disappointment.  You need a plan going in, but you also have to make sure you put in at least the minimum amount of work needed per week to make your effort work.

In other words, if you spend 10 hours per week marketing but split that 10 hours between 20 activities each activity is only getting 30 minutes per week.  That might not be enough to make that activity pay off, so you’ve got 10 wasted hours and 20 activities that don’t pay off.  You’ve also got a lot of frantic activity and management of those activities.

What if  you changed your plan to only focus on the best 5 marketing activities for your business and instead you spent 2 hours each on them?  Now you’ve cherry-picked the best activities to be doing and you’re spending more time on them.  This makes it more likely that you’ll succeed in any given activity.  Many marketing activities are simply not worth doing unless you can put in enough time.

Why do we solopreneurs do this to ourselves?  Some of it may boil down to “bright, shiny object syndrome.”  We hear something new and it seems like this is IT, the one thing that will propel our business to new heights.  As entrepreneurs, we’re drawn to new things so of course we want to take them on.  It may be a little bit of intimidation – it’s hard to go against what an expert with much more success than you says.  It could be that you love the presence someone else has and are seeking to emulate their success.  It might be that a certain tactic has been successful for your competitors.  There’s other reasons I’m sure.

Whatever the reason, consider getting off the treadmill of doing lots of things poorly.  Think about doing fewer things and doing them better.  Maybe there is a new balance that will get you both better results and less stress.

What activities could you do less of but do a better job at?  Tell me about it in the comments.

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