You Need to Start Thinking Small…Smaller…Smaller…There You Go!
Today, I’m going to be talking all about Tiny Habits.
I don’t mean playing with Star Wars figurines or making canapés, I mean doing little things consistently to reach your goal/s. Making, well, you know, tiny habits…
It’s a book by the behaviourist, BJ Fogg. Similar in principle to Darren Hardy’s The Compound Effect. Repetition becomes a habit and then you have changed your behaviour.
The key is to doing these little things consistently. And that’s during the good times and the bad times. How business is, how the economy is, how the world is… it’s all irrelevant.
Why smaller is better
So, rather than jumping feet first into something, you do something small and often and you build up. And you never stop building up. Again, repetition.
Maybe you want to become a world class marketer. Rather than signing up to some one-week, super intensive, super expensive marketing course, you buy a book, listen to a podcast, buy another book, attend a seminar…. Ongoing learning in chunks.
I know which one will serve you better.
There are some people who do like to jump feet first into things and are successful this way. But, to be honest, they’re pretty special. Most of us mere mortals will simply burn ourselves out.
As well as changing behaviour, the principles can be applied to tasks. And, with most people in lockdown and remote working, there has never been a better time to look at your “must do tomorrow” pile.
You know, those things that you’ve been wanting to get around to but never did because there’s been too much fire fighting going on. Or the tasks aren’t exactly exciting and you’ve been putting them off to spend time with your kids and, er, binge Tiger King.
What thinking small means for your marketing
A marketing example of this could be your email marketing. Maybe that’s something you’ve never really done and rather than just chucking all your time and focus into sending out 500 emails ten times a day, why don’t you break it down?
Start by looking at what you want your email to do? Who is it for and how can it help them? Then, tomorrow, check out some really cool email templates you could use. The next day, look at software options or graphics, then the day after, send your first email out.
Then, you can check your open rates the following day and segregate your list into people who are interested in your stuff.
Each day you’re working on it. Or maybe every other day. But it becomes ingrained in your business processes and will therefore stick. Rather than exhausting the idea on day one.
And, surprise, surprise, you send emails consistently. Don’t email people once every couple of months and expect it to revolutionise your business.
It’s all about looking after your engine
There are lots of things you can do to look after your business, without exhausting yourself.
When the country gets back on its feet, lots of business owners, the ones who have been curled up on the sofa, are suddenly going to go into panic mode and chuck loads of money and energy into getting their name out there again.
But, if you’ve kept your business and marketing engine ticking over during the lockdown, you will be out of the starting blocks quicker than them.
We’ve talked about this before, keeping your marketing engine ticking over, which can be hard to do if you use all your energy focusing on one big thing.
You eat a giant pizza one slice at a time, right? It’s the same with many aspects of your business, including marketing. Break it down.
Tiny Habits apply to everything.
I started thinking about this when I was on a run a couple of weeks ago. I used to hate running. Every runner I’d see looked miserable.
I was the kid at school who used my brain instead of my legs during cross country, and figured out secret shortcuts that would take me via the sweetshop and I’d still make the top ten. Apologies for that, Mr. Lock….
But running became something I wanted to get into, mainly because my wife had taken it up and was getting a lot out of it. Cycling was great but with all the pot holes and cold weather…, well, it wasn’t happening. So I downloaded the ‘Couch to 5K’ app.
If the app had told me on day one to “man up” and run 5K, guess what? I would have deleted the app and returned to the sweet shop.
Instead, the app got me to run for a minute, then walk for a minute. Then run for 90 seconds and walk for a minute. Etc., etc. It’s starting off small and building yourself up. And a few months in I’m now blasting through 10K. This would have been laughable before. Marketing is no different.
As ever, if you’ve got any questions about marketing in these troubled times, do get in touch.
And seriously, read Tiny Habits. And The Compound Effect. One page at a time even….
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