Hi. My name is Kate, and I’m a marketing addict.
It seemed harmless at first—the odd blog here, a random tweet there, but over time I found I wanted to market myself more and more.
These days I can’t live without my daily marketing fix. I have folders of images to share on social networks. I have endless promotional ideas. I even think in 140-character snippets.
I need help.
I need to take a step back.
And that’s why I’m done with marketing.
How much time do I spend marketing?
Like all addictions, the first step is admitting you have a problem. Unfortunately, I’ve avoided thinking about it for some time. I stopped tracking my time (it told me things I didn’t want to know) and ploughed on regardless.
But, just yesterday, I thought it through, and realised that each week I:
- Write one blog post
- Send one email to my database
- Post approx. 35-40 status updates across my social networks
- Tweak several pages of my site, or undertake major projects such as making the site responsive
- Investigate one new thing, whether it be Explainer videos, ads, live chats or some random widget
- Contribute to several Google+ and LinkedIn communities
- Write at least one guest post
That’s a hell of a lot of marketing, especially considering I can work only 30 or so hours a week. Multiply that by three (I also promote my book, Wobbly Jim and my husband’s business, (Voulez Vouloz), add in the time spent speaking at the events once or twice a month, and you can see how marketing is kind of eating my life.
But is it working?
Without a doubt, yes. I’ve maintained my top spot in the Google rankings, which I put down to the quality content I have on my site. Visitors regularly view 4-5 pages each time they visit, and spend 3-4 minutes (on average) looking at my site. Some people spend up to an hour here.
Gemma from Shout Marketing (who is a bit of an FB whizz) told me the engagement level on my Facebook page is awesome. (It sits around the 25%–30% mark.)
“Engagement average is about 5 to 6% – normally a bit lower for big brands (so above the 100k mark). Some sources say closer to 1% is the average. Either way you are doing really well.”
So people are reading and responding to my stuff, which is awesome.
Is the phone ringing?
Of course, the number one marketing goal is to drive new business enquires, right?
And that’s happening too. In a typical week I receive around 10-15 genuine email enquires for copywriting. My Pick My Brain service has a waiting list of a month. I get four or so phone calls a day, and unfortunately I often don’t have time to respond.
Without wanting to sound like a showy-offy wanker, I’m booked out until the other side of Christmas. I pass on so many jobs that a few copywriters make a healthy income on the leads I can’t manage.
I could expand, hire a Mini Me or subcontract, but that’s not my style or my goal. I left the world of advertising because I was over managing giant teams.
I could hire someone else to do my marketing but, if truth, be told marketing is my favourite bit. I love being creative for my clients, but even more so for myself.
I don’t want to hand a piece of the Toon pie to anyone. I’m happy with my business just being me. But clearly something has to change.
So what’s my problem?
I have more work than I can handle. It’s a great problem to have, but turning down new business really stresses me out.
And there’s the constant fear that the bubble will burst, the phone will stop ringing and my ranking will drop. So I keep marketing, so keep watching my competitors, and keep trying to stay ahead of the game.
Some of my marketing is driven by fear. And that’s not a good thing.
Why I’m not like Coca Cola
I’ve always had the Coca Cola attitude. The most recognised brand in the world still spends more on marketing and advertising than most brands. Why? Surely they don’t need to after all this time?
They know that people have low attention spans, that a new generation of Coke drinkers is born every year, and that the other brands are nipping at their ankles.
But I’m not Coca Cola. I don’t have an empire and a team of marketing minions. I just have little exhausted, overstretched me.
And that’s why I’m taking a step back from marketing.
- My eBook is on hold.
- My eCourse will have to wait. (2015 update: It didn’t wait that long – it’s live now – Check it out at The Recipe for SEO Success)
- My blog posts might not be quite so regular.
I’m going to stop worrying as much about new business, and focus more on the business I have. I now realise that a lot of my marketing is pure ego—building the Toon brand at the expense of earning a living and living my life.
I won’t be going cold turkey on marketing, but I will be cutting back.
So if you notice I’ve gone a little quiet over the coming months, don’t fret. It’s all part of the plan.
Over to you
How much time do you spend marketing? Are you worried that you spend too much time promoting your business? Or do you wish you did more?
Did you like this post?
You might like my book ‘Confessions of a Misfit Entrepreneur | How to succeed despite yourself’ – buy it online here.
Want to have a chat?
If you need a Copywriter, SEO Consultant or Information Architect, then please contact me.