I thought I would share a typical day combined with a perfect day. I wake at about 5:30 pretty much every morning. I don’t use an alarm and the reasons for that are another whole blog post. When I wake, I have 5 furry faces in mine and at least 8 paws of varying sizes jumping on me or pawing me. I’ll let them out and then back to bed we all go, where I’ll read for about half an hour to an hour.
So, this morning, I was reading Brand Identity Breakthrough: How To Craft Your Company’s Unique Story to Make Your Products Irresistible, by Gregory Diehl. I’ll read ebooks almost exclusively. The only time I buy a physical book is if it is reference and I plan to leaf through it to find something. These are generally tax and law books.
In my ebooks, I’ll highlight some text as reference or to use as tidbit of information or motivation.
After I read, I’ll get into my Mac and check messages in email and social media. Just catch up a bit with friends and associates.
This schedule is necessarily flexible. Sometimes I will wake up with an idea that I need to get down quickly. As a writer, I don’t take chances anymore that I’ll be able to remember the idea later. I’ll start writing immediately. This morning I woke up with the idea to blog about a ‘Day in the Life.” So I took a few notes, like the book title, and then as I went through my morning, I took more notes and started writing. I’m sort of blessed in writing. I don’t spend spend a great deal of time nuancing sentences or massaging messages. I just write.
Ok, on with the day. It’s almost 7:00 now and the sun is just starting to come up. It’s October… so, this is normal. The furry kids were just getting a little excited and pawing me, but I’m not done with this post… so, they returned to their beds.
I currently have more than 30 tabs open on my browser. Two are just my website. One is the dashboard and one is the stats page. I’ll refresh that page a few times throughout the day to get an idea of how much traffic is coming at certain times and from where. Also, which blog posts are bringing people in.
Then I have several (many) tabs open that I arrive at through a search. For example, I have two tabs open to Social Media Examiner, 2 tabs open in MeetUp, because I’m thinking of starting a Meetup group for small businesses and entrepreneurs here in the Black Hills. I have a LinkedIn page open, because I recently created a group there for that same purpose and I want to watch it. I think local businesses could benefit from networking with each other and sharing their ideas and frustrations and expertise. One of my favorite skills is referring people. I love making introductions. I mean I LOVE it.
I also have my course on Webinars that Convert with Amy Porterfield open. I’ll try to take in a module a day or so, if I can. But honestly, I have difficulty (always have) with slowing my mind down to one task. I’ll often be watching her course and then suddenly get an idea of what I want to share with my audience, and down the rabbit hole I go.
Another tab I have open now is my virtual ticket to Podcast Movement 2018. I still love podcasts and will get mine going… soon. But in the meantime, I support Jared and Dan and all the other podcasters and there is so much to learn from these seminars even if I wasn’t into podcasting.
I have at least 12 tabs open that are search engine results. A couple of them I left open to make notes from, but they are not going to be resources that I share. Just because the page has something useful, doesn’t garner it a “let’s share it with everybody.”
There’s a resource that I use a great deal but I would rarely send somebody else to it. One reason is that the articles (there are LOTS of articles) are riddled with links. Links are great for folks who can look past them and keep reading or who can follow the link and not end up down a rabbit hole. But I have found that folks that need/want my subscription service generally don’t want to spend time following links that may or may not fulfill their current need. Some of my subscribers are phenomenal at their business; baker, carpenter, horse trainer, however, they are not highly skilled at negotiating the online world. And they really don’t want to be. Not to say none of them are. I do have a few subscribers who excel at research… they just have more important things to do in their business or personal life than to spend hours online. They see the value of having somebody else do it… like me.
Another reason I don’t use that aforementioned site as a resource very often is their search bar sucks. I friggin hate it. Results include non-site returns. Meaning they are paid ads that you have to sift through to find a return that is still on that site… and THEN, it is sorted by relevance not date. So, I always have to change that. Sorted by relevance would make sense if all the returns were recent. But the site is many years old and so you might find several returns that fit the keyword but are 7 years old.
So, I don’t share that site as a resource. Although, I WILL very often quote it and offer a link to where I found some nugget, for those who want to check it out.
I’ll read each of the pages I have open and follow links and vet the sources and take notes and if I find a page that is recent and accurate and trustworthy and not filled with pop-up ads or pushing the reader to a funnel page, AND is easily understood and inviting to stay on, I’ll share it as a resource. I’ll follow the links on that page to other pages and do the same thing. And then when I’ve exhausted that particular tab, I’ll go back to the search page that took me there and see what page is next.
Often, I’ll follow a link to a page that I think will be interesting but take more time than I really wanted to spend just then and so I’ll leave that tab open to peruse later and I’ll go back to my original search.
Every couple weeks, I’ll take a day and cull the tabs back to zero.
That means I’ll bookmark several of them, or just scan them quickly and if nothing jumps out and grabs my attention, I’ll close the tab.
I’ll spend about 6 hours a day doing searches and following links and taking notes. And then I’ll put some attention into my own social media. Writing a blog post, like this, and sharing it on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. Answering queries. Checking out new plug-ins for my own site. Tweaking my site. Tweaking my profiles. And whatever I learn for my own purposes, I’l assume somebody is in need of, and I’ll include it in my resource subscription service.
When I say I can save somebody at least 10 hours a month, that number is based on how much time the average small business owner would spend before they slammed their laptop shut and gave up their task.
The goal, for me, is to give you a head start. I’m not going to actually create your presence and follow up with your market. I’m going to supply you with the current tools to jump over that first level of “where or how do I start?” I’ll give you the resources you need. Fully vetted. These are resources that I have found clearly answer the question and are current. Social media is a constantly changing, evolving and growing ecosystem. What we knew a year ago might not be true anymore. I like staying on top of it. I like sharing resources of good how-to’s.
My feeling is that if I can get a person past those initial 10 hours of “head-desk,” “that’s not what I’m looking for,” “Stop it with the pop-ups!” and “what?”… you can get down to real progress.
But back to my day. I work almost entirely from my home. Surrounded by, currently: 5 dogs, 2 cats, and 2 horses. All but 2 are rescues.
As I said above, mixed in with my research, I’m also taking at least one course, watching a webinar or seminars. I will share parts of those as resources, as well.
This activity will often take me to the evening hours. I will take breaks and go out with the dogs, or get something to eat, or just surf with no goal in mind at odd times during the day.
And often times, that surfing will lead me to taking a note of something to check out further or make my own business a bit easier. And therefore yours.