Welcome to part DOS of the Lazy Internet Marketer’s Guide to Productivity series!
This post is going to cover only a few productivity strategies but these are crucial to your success online- no matter what type of marketing you do. When you apply these simple guidelines, you actually GET STUFF DONE and as a result, see money flow into your bank account.
And when you DON’T apply these (or just ignorant of these concepts), you’re at the whim of every distraction and ” new shiny object” (*cough cough new WSOs*) that comes your way.
Let me ask you a quick question – when you first started this whole make money online thing, did you set an income goal?
For me, my first goal was to make $3k a month… and it took a few years to reach that goal. The turning point wasn’t when I discovered some new crazy traffic method. It was when I learned how to get FOCUSED and make the best use of my time. I think a lot of successful internet marketers out there will agree with me.
It’s a really rewarding feeling to actually reach the income goals you set out for yourself, especially if you’ve been struggling for a long time. On the other hand, when you’re not where you want to be financially, it’s kind weird and awkward when your friends and family ask you how your “internet thing” is going and you’re not sure how to answer.
Think about how great it would be to look at yourself in the mirror and say, YES I did it! I reached my financial goal! Instead of, oh man… another failed attempt.
This post is going to put you in that first category
Essential Productivity Habits Part Two
So last time we talked about to-do lists and flow state. The two additional productivity habits are the following
1. Workspace management – clear your workspace of ALL non essentials. Get rid of anything that doesn’t help you make money online. This means you need to throw away any food or drinks you have lying around, remove any books, magazines, pieces of paper you don’t need. Shoo away your cat.
My kitten Boo-Boo doing some SEO
Also, turn off your cell phone and TV. Exit out of Facebook and Gmail (block these websites if you have to). Shut the door and tell your family you not to bother you for the next X hours (personally I like working 3 hours in the morning when my minds the most fresh).
Jason Fladlien calls this your “profit hours” where you are COMPLETELY focused on tasks that will make you money.
Eliminating all distractions and treating your desk as a sacred workspace conditions your brain to start taking your business seriously. It also helps you enter flow state, which I explained in part 1, allowing you to get all your tasks done as efficiently as possible.
2. Set deadlines for each task on your to-do list. Say that your tasks for the day is to write three 500 word articles, install a few plugins and build some backlinks to your homepage. After deciding which one is most important and prioritizing them, you need to set specific amount of time you’ll give yourself to complete each task.You can use either an online timer (http://www.e.ggtimer.com) or actual cooking timer. DO NOT use your cell phone!
This works because of something called Parkinson’s law, which states that “Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion”.
This means if you give yourself 2 hours to write a 500 word article, you’ll most likely take the whole 2 hours. If you give your self only 30 minutes, you’ll find a way to get it done in 30 minutes, without sacrificing any significant quality (of course, if we go too extreme, then there will be a bigger difference in quality). So by giving yourself a set deadline, you’ll subconsciously find a way to get it done in that time frame.
But what if you don’t?
Then, give yourself another time frame to finish the task, and set a more accurate time frame next time. You’ll find that by becoming aware of how long it takes you to complete certain tasks, you’ll naturally become faster at finishing them!
The 4 Laws of Internet Marketing Productivity
Here’s a quick recap of the principles we covered from the last blog post and this one…
1. To do list – every night, before you go to bed, make a to-do list. Group them together by things you MUST accomplish, things you can do if you have time and things to do in the near future.
2. Flow state – practice getting into flow state by setting aside a period where you work non-stop with no distractions for at least 30 minutes. Do not stop working and practice for at least 7 days.
3. Workspace management – get rid of anything that doesn’t help you make money online.
4. Set deadlines – Leverage Parkinson’s law by giving yourself realistic time frames to complete each tasks ahead of time.
My last name ain’t Robbins but I’ll pretend it is for a second :p
Right now, STOP what you’re doing and complete these 2 things:
1, Print out these 4 items or write them down on a Post-it and put it somewhere you can see when you’re working. Look it constantly as a reminder of what you need to be doing in order to stay focused and productive.
2. Also, get another sticky note and write “is this the best use of my time?” and stick it on your computer monitor. Ask yourself this question and if this answer is no, look at your to-do list and switch over to what you need to get done.
Please take the time to do those things- they may sound trivial, but can mean the difference between success and failure!
Your Online Business is Your Baby
Remember that internet marketing is a BUSINESS and you need to treat it like one. If you’ve ever bought a WSO or any other IM product, you have a proven business model you can implement and make money with. The missing piece is just you taking action and staying disciplined and focused.
Your motivation will waiver from time to time and there will be times when you feel like you’ll throw up if you spin another article. But in the end it still comes down to taking action and commitment.
One thing I did that really helped me develop a tenacious resolve to reaching my income goal was making a big promise to my family. My family lives in China and visits from time to time. I made a promise to take them to Disneyland for a week next time they visit. Let’s not forget that Disney isn’t the cheapest amusement park in the US.
I made that promise that to my 13 year old little sister who’s never been to Disneyland in her life.
Wouldn’t it kind of suck if I didn’t keep my promise and let her down?
That’s what drives me to remain focused when I’m working every day and slowly chip away at my internet marketing projects.
Productivity + Focus = Acieving Your Financial Goals
Whewwww! Another post that ended up longer than I had originally intended. Don’t skip over the action steps just because it’s “boring mindset stuff” and not a step by step blueprint for making money (trust me, there will be plenty of future posts on that).
If you put these principles to use you’ll achieve your internet marketing goals– guaranteed! It doesn’t matter if you want to build a 6 figure online business or have a steady stream of passive income coming in, when you get focused and practice these productivity principles, you’ll also feel great about yourself and start succeeding in other areas of your life.
Also, keep in mind that you should only apply these productivity guidelines when you are working on your business (during your profit hours). I assume you’re already dedicating a chunk of time each day to internet marketing. That’s when you want to apply these things.
DO NOT try to be ultra productive during your FREE TIME, like when you’re reading your favorite blog for fum, otherwise you’ll turn some sort of a weird OCD productivity freak :p