Social media marketing and freelancing are fantastic bedfellows and there is often no better way to exploit your talent in that area than by going it alone. Staying productive, however, can be very tricky indeed and particularly when working from home.
Freelancing presents a number of challenges. You need to remain focused, motivated and free of distraction. That’s easier said that done in a world with so many things vying for our attention.
Many people enter the world of freelancing with the desire to restore their work-life balance. In reality, the ever-present thought that no work means no pay often forces freelancers to work well beyond the realm of the 9 to 5. Burnout is therefore seemingly lurking around every corner.
So, if you’re a social media marketer working from home and want to avoid running yourself into the ground, I’ve got 5 brilliant productivity tips for you. Read on!
1. Work to a schedule
It doesn’t really matter what time or day you start and finish work as a freelancer – that’s the beauty of working for yourself. However, without any form of structure to your day, you will quickly find yourself working more hours than you need to.
Thankfully, social media marketing lends itself to a more formal way of working. As you develop relationships with your clients, you’ll start to get a feel for the schedules you’ll need to work to. Schedule the time required smartly and stick to it.
2. Automate common tasks
As a social media marketer, you know that much of your work can be automated. You’re the brains behind the operation, but as a freelancer working alone, you’ll need to lean on technology a bit to help you along.
By making use of platforms such as Hootsuite and Buffer you can schedule posts in batches and even rely on it to automatically pick the best time to hit Twitter and Facebook timelines in order to achieve maximum impact.
3. Don’t work in a mess
Take a look at your desk. Is it strewn with notes, Post Its and piles of old reports? Make your next task to clean it. A bit of OCD is healthy when it comes to our working environments, and if you’re working at home for yourself, you probably haven’t got the benefit of a cleaner who tidies your office each week.
Remove unnecessary clutter, and only retain things on your desk, which are required for the task at hand. When completed, get it out of sight and out of mind.
4. Don’t forget to play
As a freelancer, you’re effectively an entrepreneur. That’s quite a feeling, and I’d recommend reminding yourself of that every time you look in the mirror, but entrepreneurs all too easily experience burnout, and you will too if you neglect one of the most important aspects of work – play.
It may sound obvious, but your friends and family are key components to you being productive. Keep them close and don’t favour work over spending time with them. And, while keeping your hand in social media in your personal life will help your chosen profession, try and keep it at bay as much as possible when you’re not working!
5. Focus on single tasking
Social media marketing will see you working with several clients at once and across multiple industries. However, you’re only one person and there’s no way of creating a clone of yourself, so the ability ‘single task’ is incredibly important.
Your attention span is limited, so avoid dividing it by more than one task. Utilise tips 1 and 2 above and work smartly on each client. Give them equal billing in your schedule, and avoid stretching your brain power and concentration by combining jobs. Both you and your client base will benefit as a result.