If you can think back to your childhood before your taste buds started accepting the food you now call heaven, you’d remember that dinner was a much different occasion.
You would sit there with the minutes ticking by as that giant rump roast sits there alone with your peaches slices, potatoes, and bread rolls long gone in your stomach.
But you couldn’t leave that table until your roast is gone as well.
As you poke and push it around your plate, all your siblings are now out back playing your favorite video game without you. Unfortunately, you used all your energy just eating the little yummy things around the roast and you just can’t muster up the strength to finish it off.
If you would have just started with the roast to begin with, everything else would have gone better. You would have had nothing but small and enjoyable foods to finish off.
You procrastinated. And marketers do it all the time.
When it comes to your work tasks or even your daily tasks, you may experience situations very similar to this old childhood memory. Procrastination tends to fall on the biggest, hardest, and yet most important tasks of the day, week, quarter, or year.
When you wake up and you have that big huge roast staring you in the eyes, everyone has the natural tendency to push it aside and focus on the smaller, more enjoyable tasks of the day. But, focusing all their efforts on that will soon wear them out. It then becomes almost impossible to get to the task that really mattered for that day.
Marketers enter every campaign or activity with assumptions. They assume that a specific PPC campaign will generate a CTR of 1%, and they assume that their CPA will be $320…or whatever.
Then the campaign begins and the data starts to pour in. Turns out your CTR is .05% and your CPA is $680. Things are not going nearly as well as you anticipated.
Well, most marketers don’t do anything. They stay the course. They keep doing what they were doing and, consequently, they keep wasting money. This is fundamentally a problem related to procrastination.
Far too many marketers fail to listen to the data–including call tracking data–quickly enough. They procrastinate and they keep doing dumb things that waste money.
Don’t procrastinate. Listen to the data and change IMMEDIATELY.
So what do you do? How do we get over this horrible habit so we can finish all of our task, optimize our marketing, and improve our businesses? No one wants to be stuck in their work cubical forever, which is exactly what will happen with procrastination.
So make a decision. As soon as you get up and your feet hit the floor, decide what task is the largest and will take the most effort and finish it first. Make it your priority. Don’t procrastinate it and put it on the top of your to-do list.
Listening to the data your analytics tools gather should be on the top of the list.
Once you’ve made the decision to listen to the data, stay committed. Don’t let yourself work on any little tasks until this one is done, completed, kicked in the butt, and wrapped up.
Because once you finish the hardest task of the day, everything else will be easier. Your marketing campaigns will succeed, your business will prosper, and you’ll be happy.
Make the decision today, save the procrastination for never.