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Growing your business with marketing, week 33: Chunking time

Posted by Colleen Wainwright on

This is Week 33of a 52-week project/experiment in DIY marketing. Armed with nothing but a copy of the 2009 Grow Your Business Marketing Plan + Calendar
and my bare wits, I'm applying the skills you need to grow a business
in real time, day by day, and reporting on them week by week. See the Project Companion Blog, A Virgo's Guide to Marketing, for in-depth posts, additional links and other marketing-related goodness.

I've tried (and failed) setting up a workable scheduling system a dozen times over—at least.

Among the various things I've tested and abandoned were:

  • Scheduling like a lawyer, where I slotted myself down to the 15-minute "pod"
  • Scheduling like a dentist, where I parceled my time out in 40/20-minute increments
  • Scheduling like an actor/cowboy/hobo, where I plugged in my major,
    must-do's & deadlines, and just did everything else around them

The problem, of course, is that scheduling like a lawyer, dentist or
actor works best when you're working in one of those professions; for
me, in my new capacity as solopreneur wearing many hats, it was
disastrous. I got a lot done when I carved my time up in tiny slices,
put them in my calendar, and adhered to the program, but I quickly
began to resent it. I didn't go into business for myself to boss myself
around. And the actor/cowboy/hobo-style of scheduling, where I
basically went where the gig was (or the free meal and ride, in the
case of hobo-style scheduling), was wildly inefficient for managing the
many, many things I've got stacked on my plate.

Obviously, if you're interested in a marketing calendar, you get
that maybe there's something to this scheduling thing, and to doing
work incrementally. But the work still needs to happen in a way that
fits your specific needs. The marketing calendar this project is
centered around may be the result of years of experience and lots of
hard work, but it's still a serving suggestion, or a rough outline;
even Ilise says adapting it to suit yourself is a good idea, provided
you're not adapting your way out of the work altogether.

After wrassling with my calendar for years, I'm finally starting to
settle into a kind of rhythm, and an understanding of what works and
what doesn't. What works for me may not work for you, but maybe you'll
find some new ideas, or some reassurance that you're playing in the
right area for your own rhythms.

To read the rest of this post, including a breakdown of the various scheduling methods I've tested and how they worked in real time last week, jump over to the Virgo Guide to Marketing.

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