Updated: Jan 27
January is the time to get in shape with strategies to make your business successful
All month, we’ve been talking about starting an exercise program to build a strong business-- a workout plan to get those new year’s business goals in place. Harnessing the power of sports psychology is useful to nurturing healthy habits and building Brand Protection PR™ for your CBD business.
Healthy habits to build a strong business
Let’s start with a little bit of neuroscience research. According to a 2009 study published in the European Journal of Social Psychology, it takes 18 to 254 days for a person to form a new habit. The study also concluded that, on average, it takes 66 days for a new behavior to become automatic. That’s about 2 months-- so if you start building good daily business habits now, you’ll be miles ahead of the game by Q2.
What does forming a new business habit look like? It’s deciding what’s important to building your business and making those tasks a non-negotiable part of your day or week. If you get started on good business habits at this point in the year, you’ll be amazed at how much you achieve by Q3 or the end of the year.
Let’s talk about some examples here at M&C:
The Monday meeting - it’s an opportunity to come together, look at the “sprint” of tasks for our clients for that week based on their PR plans, and a chance to divvy up the workload and stay on track. That way we don’t scramble at the end of the month playing catch up on client work. An occasional holiday might move the meeting to Tuesday, but we never, ever skip it.
Speaking of that “sprint” of tasks for each client, one of our business habits is to have a centralized to-do sheet that pulls monthly tactics directly from that client’s PR plan (more on that in a minute). The format of this to-do list creates a built-in need to visit the PR plan frequently, ensuring we’re accomplishing exactly what we set out to do for each client throughout the year. No more PR plans gathering dust on the shelf and losing track of what’s due when.
Reporting is a habit built into our workflow. We meet with our clients once a month to give a detailed report of our work. A quarterly report revisits the client objectives, those big goals like creating loyal CBD brand customers or driving brand awareness on social media. By the end of year report, clients can see the whole picture of how strategic alignment of the objectives and tactics made big progress toward their goals.
Getting your business-building goals into shape to make your business successful
To continue the aerobics metaphor, it’s time to get your business-building goals into shape! We all know that you don’t hop out of bed one day, take a quick jog, and look like a million bucks in a bathing suit. The same goes for making a million bucks in your CBD business-- now that you’ve got good habits, it’s time to put those habits to work on your goals.
First, some research from the field of exercise science: how long does it take to get “in shape?” Well, it’s not great news: a 2004 study by researchers at the University of Wisconsin, La Crosse, published in The Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, examined whether or not 6 weeks of exercise would visibly show a difference in fitness and appearance. Short answer: not really.
But the larger question is: what do you mean by “in shape?” The article based on this study makes the point: “In general, though, you will start to “feel” better long before you see major fitness results.” Feel better like being able to run upstairs without being winded. What does this look like in building brand protection for your business?
We’ve talked about SMART goals a lot: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Timebound. Let’s say you want to create awareness of your CBD brand on social media, but it’s really hard to come up with engaging social media posts all the time. Daily posts turn into weekly posts turn into “when I’ve got a minute” posts. We get it. But you’re not going to build a social media community without being, well, social.
This is where your SMART goal setting comes into play. Instead of saying “I want to triple my followers this year and go viral on half my posts!” and petering out sometime in mid-February, why not set a goal of posting high-quality social content three times a week and engaging meaningfully with your social audience? Remember the free downloadable 1-sheet that will help with this topic-- harnessing the power of the 4Cs of communication.
The key strategy on this sheet is CONSISTENT. One of the phrases you’ll hear all the time at M&C is CONSISTENT CADENCE OF CONTENT. It builds a foundation for your business to grow online, engage meaningfully with followers, and demonstrate to your customers that you’re there when they need you. Imagine if your customers start to feel that way about your online presence-- how’s that for achieving a meaningful goal?
Use the bejabbers out of your tools
(Is bejabbers a technical term? you may be asking yourself at this point. Of course not. But do you know exactly what I mean? Of course you do.)
You know how you walk into a new gym, exercise class, or try a new sport and think…. I have no idea how to use this piece of equipment. There’s no sense in having powerful tools without fully knowing how to use them to help achieve your goals.
We mentioned earlier our weekly client to-do list. It used to be a simple document, then we got busy (and smart.) We turned the document into a spreadsheet so we could paste those cells into the weekly to-do list and have the list update automatically. No more cutting and pasting. No more PR plans gathering dust. It’s an active document linked to our weekly to-do sheet and nothing gets lost.
What about specialized tools like Sprout Social for managing social media and SharpSpring for marketing automation? Almost all these services have a certification course, an agency development group, or even a digital library of resources that help you learn the ins and outs of how to get the most out of your tool. You’d better believe these tools are loaded on our computers and our smartphones and we can solve problems for our clients quickly and efficiently.
By setting your business fitness goals now, working on a little healthy business habit building, smart goal-setting, and tool-sharpening now, you’ll set yourself up to build a strong, successful business in the days and months ahead.
Here's the video recap from today's episode: