In our fast paced work environment, optimizing your productivity is an essential way to excel when you are juggling many day to day tasks. Your time is valuable and figuring out ways to optimize your productivity should be a non negotiable for you. We’ve compiled a list of productivity hacks straight from digital marketing experts and entrepreneurs to help you make the best use of your time.
- Use a brand board
Kendall King of The Open Market Agency says “Surround yourself with brand materials. I save a great deal of time by having a brand board above my computer with color codes, font types and quarterly goals for the brand I’m working on. This can also get you in the right mindset – helping creativity flow and stopping blocks in their tracks.”
- Time blocking
Christian Myers of Lure Creative advises “In the age of working from home we have tons of ways to take a break from work. What we use quite a bit that has been effective is the Pomodoro technique where you work in short bursts followed by a break.”
Mark Balliet of Mentality Designs says “Nothing kills productivity faster than inefficient multitasking. Every day we time block from 7 am-11 am for ONLY our most important tasks. This time is spent working on the items we have deemed most important to accomplish our goals.”
Venese Lau of Flip Productions says “Time blocking is the most powerful productivity hack that we use in my digital marketing agency. Time blocking is a technique of blocking out time slots and designating certain tasks for those times. Not just meetings, but block out the times that you will be working on specific tasks. Decide what days and hours you will work, when you will do your calls and meetings, and don’t forget to add in some buffer times.
Through batch working in the allocated time block, you will be able to produce more content in less time. Batch working can help you decrease the amount of distraction that you might come across and help you to concentrate so you can focus on a single task at a time. Once you have
enough content for one platform, you can then move onto another platform and focus on that.”
- Allow flex working time
Paula Glynn of Pixelstorm says “We have alot of web developers in our team, and this type of role works best based on their personal situation. Some prefer to work when kids have gone to bed, some first thing in the morning. We allow our web development team to work 50% of their hours whenever they work best, and 50% during team hours (9-5). This has increased productivity and also the quality of work delivered significantly.”
Indy Lynch of Sonder advises “Automate communication with your clients, where possible. We had an internal process review and found that our project managers were spending a lot of time being stuck in feedback loops between the client and our designers / developers.
- Simplify tasks using software
We use Clickup to manage our projects and saw an opportunity to use their email automations feature. We use it to quickly update our clients on the status of our project and allow them to input feedback without us lifting a finger! It has saved us countless hours of back and forth.
Jeff Moriarty of JMoriarty Marketing advises “One of the best tools to keep track of time and project work is Harvest. It is inexpensive, and it allows me and my freelancers to easily track time and the detailed work they are performing. And sending these invoices to clients takes minutes, and everything is tracked down to the minute. This has saved me a ton of time from a reporting and management perspective. The less time I have to spend on that area, the more time I can focus on marketing.”
Sarah Carangelo of Tandem Buzz says “Overall, Optmyzer has saved our company many hours of analyzing data and trends and given us alerts on anything that we may have missed otherwise. It has allowed us to automate many of our daily tasks with more control than an automated bidding strategy alone. Optmyzer, also, has given us valuable insight into opportunities and processes that save time on tedious tasks.
- Refocus your energy
Samuel Shepherd of Digital Next says “Maintaining productivity while managing a creative team can be difficult, as creativity and lateral thinking aren’t things that you can simply force out of someone. I’ve personally found that allowing someone the open mental space to complain about their current roadblock tends to remove it entirely. By encouraging staff to be open about their frustrations and inability to continue creating, you can often spur renewed vigour for the tasks at hand by virtue of thinking about it in a different, more casual light.
We also have an area in our office for people to work out and refocus their energy, which is a great way to clear the mind and break up the day, especially in office environments where people can otherwise end up just eating at their desks.”
- Schedule tasks around peak performance times
Amanda Birth of Big Leap says “We try to organize our daily tasks around when we are most productive. Everyone has different times of the day that they are the most productive, so scheduling the tasks that require the most focus when you personally are the most productive helps us stay productive throughout the day.”
- Set goals
Kristina Witmer of Witmer Group advises “No matter what you are trying to do, you increase chance of success when I making a schedule with milestones and adamantly sticking to it. And, give yourself the freedom to adjust goals as needed.”
Tyler Garns of Box Out Marketing says “Set daily goals. Our agency does a 15-minute meeting daily to create a list of goals we need to achieve for the day. With this, everyone will have a clear guide of what needs to be done and accomplished to reach our goal.
This meeting also serves as a reminder of the things that need to be prioritized for the day. We also take this as an opportunity to raise our concerns and issues to solve everything urgently and avoid making it worse. Moreover, a departmental meeting is held every Friday to give us all an update of what has happened during the week and if the daily goals that were made are met.
Setting goals is vital not only for me but also for my team because it would be easier for them to work their best if they know what our team wants to happen. It also helps everyone focus on each task, making them more productive and efficient at work.”
- Set deadlines
Patrick Moore of CryptoWhat states “You should set deadlines for your marketing campaigns. Deadlines provide structure to your team and give them a time frame for completing projects.
You can also set smaller deadlines that build-up to the big deadline. When you break the project into smaller tasks, it becomes more manageable. Your team can focus on achieving their smaller marketing goals and work toward the main goal. Some team members work better when they have shorter deadlines because it motivates them to get the job done. You should encourage your team to create deadlines that work for them while still completing the task before the main deadline.”
- Sort your email
Scott Salter of Factory Pattern says “I enforce an email inbox sorting system that helps me keep on top of client communications and any actions needed. I have labels set up for ‘actions’, ‘urgent actions’, ‘awaiting reply’ and ‘to read’.
I sort emails into these by using expanded stars in Gmail and then operate out of the ‘starred’ section, keeping my inbox empty. This allows me to focus on what needs doing, rather than getting lost in a sea of emails. It’s really helped boost my productivity.”
Dakota Kalbacher of Kota Marketing says “I powerwalk. Now, this may seem odd, but it works for me! Part of the reason why I enjoy my career so much is because I’ve created a way for me to get my daily 8-miles in while simultaneously getting work done, whether that be building websites, managing social media accounts, or designing logos. Great websites cannot be built from an iPhone (yet!) So, I installed an adjustable wall mount that holds my laptop at the perfect angle for me to use with ease while I’m walking on my treadmill. Yes, it’s crazy… but I’ve found that when my legs are moving, I’m able to hyper focus on my work far better than when I’m sitting at my desk.
Walking extends to several aspects of my company. For example, I keep several pairs of sneakers at my office just for clients so that we can have walking meetings. Recently, I learned that both Steve Jobs & Mark Zuckerburg frequented walking meetings with their clients as well. Whether I’m walking with a client or laser-focused on a website that I’m building while walking on my treadmill, movement is a fantastic way to stay productive.”
- Eat the frog first
Dani Brennan of Seed Sprout Bloom states “We abide by the “eat the frog” strategy. Based on Mark Twain’s famous quote, “If you have to eat a frog, it’s best to do it first thing in the morning,” we knock out our most challenging tasks first. Staying organized and eating the frog are our top tips for boosting productivity in marketers. We also really like ClickUp for project management and organization and HoneyBook to hold all our contracts, proposals, and contacts.”
In conclusion, the experts agree that it’s better to work smarter not harder in order to truly get ahead of your competitors and that includes everything from utilizing peak working hours to tackle critical tasks, to automating and using software to help you save time in various aspects of your business. We urge you to put these hacks to good use in your digital marketing career to help make the most of your most valuable asset- Time.