My last blog post was August 10, which may be a hint that I’m an expert on the subject of procrastination! I promised myself that I’d write this entry before I travelled to Europe for ten days earlier this month. When I returned, I was too busy with paid work to give it a second thought…but, again, I promised myself that I’d get blogging by Friday. When I failed to achieve that, I was convinced I would come up with a fantastic topic before the weekend was over.
Needless to say, when Monday morning dawned, I awoke blogless. “No worries,” I said to myself, “My latest project is out for client review, and I don’t have anything else booked in today.” By mid afternoon, (oops! make that late afternoon) I’d still managed to do everything but blog. What’s my problem? If I’d been working on a client deadline, I would have researched, written, reviewed and delivered the job ahead of schedule. Why is it that when it comes to dealing with what’s closest to us, we find every excuse to divert and delay?
Most of the time, it’s because we think we’re too busy to blog regularly, refresh an outdated website, create a whitepaper, interview for a case study or create a needs assessment. We believe that there are other needs that should take priority. The day-to-day imperatives involved in running a business and responding quickly and effectively to client needs outweigh the necessity to create new materials.
However, in a marketing environment that is increasingly driven by content, procrastination is a risky habit. Because other people are going to get there faster…and, if their collateral or their websites are more attractive, engaging and informative to a prospect, you will have missed the opportunity to make that vital connection. You will have failed to establish (and nurture) a relationship that progressively educates people about the value of what you do, and eventually leads to a sale.
When you finally get round to writing the content you so badly need, it will already be out of date.
So, with recession officially behind us, let’s all make a credible, achievable to-do list, and rank effective, regularly refreshed communication as a priority. Without it, however much you have to offer your clients, however brilliant your technology, however outstanding your customer service, only your closest friends will know!