You know it needs to be done, yet day after day it’s there at the bottom (or top) of your to-do-list and you haven’t started on it. We all have tasks we procrastinate on, jobs we should be doing but search for any excuse not to. We tell ourselves we’ll do it when we are in the perfect mood, the right time of day, when we have oodles of time for the task. Well that time is now! Let’s get rid of that guilt and get started on your book marketing.
Eat the frog first
Mark Twain once famously said ‘If it’s your job to eat a frog, it’s best to do it first thing in the morning’. He wasn’t referring to real frogs (thankfully!) but rather your one major to-do task that you have been procrastinating on. Doing the dreaded most important task first will give you a sense of accomplishment and momentum for the rest of the day.
Break it down
If book marketing seems overwhelming then break it down into manageable tasks. Every author does this with writing a book and marketing is no different. Work out what you want to achieve with your marketing, what you need to put in place to make that happen then do a little each day. Look for the easiest, smallest step you could take to get your book marketing on the right track. Keep it simple. You don’t have to do it all – focus only on the essential. Stick to one or two types of social media platforms, set a marketing schedule you can maintain and automate where possible.
Set a timer
This is my absolute favorite method for beating procrastination. Using a timer forces you to focus distraction-free on the task at hand. Don’t make your sessions too long, I find anywhere 30 minutes optimal but you may prefer shorter. During that time avoid all distractions, put your mobile on airline mode and switch off your internet. I love using the Tide app for focus sessions, and Toggl which works across all devices or you can keep it simple and use the timer on your phone.
Goodbye social media and internet distractions! I love being connected but have to admit there is no bigger time thief than the internet. Whether you restrict yourself to checking social media once a day, turn off notifications on your phone or install an internet blocker, such as Freedom or Focus, disconnecting will do wonders for getting it done.
It doesn’t have to be perfect it just has to be done. You might hold yourself up to high standards but it’s hard to begin on your book marketing if you are continually anxious about how you will be perceived. Like writing, your book marketing is not going to be ‘perfect’ but if you continue to show up it will continue to improve. I love this YouTube clip by Hank Green who swears by doing everything to 80% as good as possible. Start where you are with what you have and don’t expect perfection.
Make yourself accountable
Keep yourself accountable with an accountability partner. Have a critique partner already? Share your goals, deadlines and processes and encourage them to do the same. Set due dates to keep yourself on track. You are more likely to get the work done if you have someone else cheering you along the way.
Reward yourself after each achievement
Celebrate your achievements as well as the process itself. Did half an hour of book marketing this morning? Nice job. Go ahead and treat yourself. Save your fun procrastination activities (watching that video on YouTube, scrolling endlessly on Instagram) for after your book marketing is done for the day.
If ‘I’ll do it tomorrow’ is your mantra for book marketing then it’s time to replace that with ‘Just do it’. Aim to find a method that works for you – whether it is eating the frog first, setting a timer for your task or filling your day with mini rewards. Organize your day to chip away at your book marketing and you’ll find you build up momentum rather than having it looming over you