A couple of posts ago I introduced "Mindful Marketing", which is the method I use when consulting clients on the most effective way to self-promote and do marketing, especially online marketing.
Mindful Marketing comes from my personal interest and self-work using mindfulness techniques. Mindfulness can go far beyond meditation and thought awareness. You don't have to be a yogi or sit under a tree for this to work for you.
Mindfulness can be applied to everything because in its simplest form, mindfulness means paying attention. And whenever we pay attention, give our full attention, and place intense focus on what we do, the results are always superior. In business, sports or any other achievement oriented discipline it is called FOCUS.
How does this apply to online marketing and personal promotion? First of all, marketing for non-marketing professionals is as enjoyable as leg waxing and it's often confusing and overwhelming. More than ever, thanks to social media and social networks, everyone is expected to promote themselves and "do" online marketing. I know, I can hear the sighs of submission and surrender ...
With marketing added to the list of "to dos", it will get very little TLM (Tender Loving Mindfulness). It has become one of those things we do because we 'have to'. And so we set out to go through the motions of online or social media marketing. And since there are a zillion lists of "top 5 ways to market yourself online" or "The 10 things that will get you noticed online", and so on, a common thought is that if we just do those things, we cast a wide net, get seen, get noticed and we'll see results.
The truth, unfortunately, is that effort and intent is equal to results. When your online marketing efforts are done under the halo of 'must do' and follow-the-list, getting that list ticked off as quickly as possible, or with as much automation as possible - all without mindfulness, you will not get the positive results you want.
The emotional connection and physical reaction to the "must do's" immediately takes us out of the doing space, out of the focused concentration and out of the intent space. That nagging, icky, stress-inducing feeling follows us through every click and every word typed and we want to move on to more interesting things - now!
Here is an example: You know you are "supposed" to post two weekly updates to Facebook, so you set a reminder in your calendar that pings you to do it on Tuesday and Thursday. You set it and forget it - until you get the reminder. Since you're probably in the middle of something when the reminder pops up you are instantly annoyed, snooze the reminder until you can't take it anymore then begrudgingly open Facebook and stare blankly, wondering what to write. You then get lost in the Facebook vortex for 90 minutes, shake yourself out of it, and when you come back to your senses, realise that you still haven't done your posting. So you might post something quickly, without really thinking about what you're posting, saying a little prayer that you'll get a few likes, and move on to something else. Tick! Crossed today's marketing off the list! But, when you don't get many reactions (because the ego will want to check back often, feeling proud of having 'done the task') you get angry, disappointed and dejected. Why bother posting on Thursday then? This doesn't work. I should just buy an ad ...
Instead of that, how about planning out your posts? Having an editorial calendar, a list of topics, a few quotes or articles you've collected, that you find interesting and think your audience would to? Even without that, how about sitting for 10 minutes mindfully thinking about who you are, what your brand is, what you want to communicate, who your audience is, and what you want to give them? Write something that resonates with you, that you are proud to put out there. And while you're on the social network, why not spend another ten minutes finding interesting people, adding your own comments to their posts, sharing and being a good community member? Spend those 10-20 minutes mindfully: don't think about anything other than making the most of your time there, and trying to reach out to people, establishing connections, and building an audience of like-minded souls?
If we do something for the wrong reasons, we are by default focused on the wrong thing. Getting through the list is the wrong thing. The right thing is to focus on the task at hand and the desired outcome, to do one thing at a time mindfully, to understand each step, why you are doing it and whether it is even something you need to do at all! This is Mindful Marketing. This is why Mindful Marketing is the method of succeeding. And it's entirely up to you, you are in control, you are accountable - and you can do it!