Small Business Marketing by Jillian Shaw Marketing, Advertising & Public Relations for the Small Business

Pulling Yourself Back Down to Earth

04.16.2010 · Posted in Business Solutions, Time Management
Too much information for small business owners

So many articles, so little time!

As an entrepreneur, you want to know all the latest gadgets and gizmos, the next big technological advance, so that you and your business can be on the cutting edge.

But as a small business owner, the mountain of information, all the different types of phones, computers and other tools, and all the programs and applications that accompany them, are beyond overwhelming.  When I see article after article like this one about the crazy future of information and communication that small businesses are hurdling towards, my head starts swimming.

So how do you keep up?

In order to be successful and grow your business, you need to stay on top of technology that can help you in that goal, and you need to stay competitive with others in your market.  But you have a business to run at the same time!  You have to balance the budget and continue to provide a superior service or product.

It’s too easy to lose sight of what’s necessary when you’re surrounded by so much information.  So how do you cope?

First, you should make sure you have your mission statement and your business goals posted right in front of you when you’re sitting at your desk.

Then when you’re surfing the web and you realize you’ve got twelve tabs open that are full of intimidating you-need-this-latest-gadget-app-strategy-book things, take a look at those business goals and scan the headlines of those articles.  Do they match up?  If not, just close the window.  Spend your time wisely.  Only read the stuff you know is going to be relevant.  Don’t worry, if you miss something today, it’ll come around again sometime soon.

Think about the information you receive.  Is it really all that relevant?  Maybe the topic is more generic than you’d like, or you’ve read a few things from a particular blog or website that you like, but the majority of it isn’t you.  If that’s the case, it might be time to pare down your sources for news.

Finally, think about the way you receive information.  Does your RSS feed feel like a to-do list?  Maybe you should drop it and just follow writers you like on Twitter.  That way you can browse material you already know you’ll probably like, but it won’t be shoved into your Google Reader or your email like an assignment.

Take some time to review how you’re spending your time when you’re self-educating and clean it up a little.  It’ll save you several minutes of filling your head with stuff that isn’t pertinent to your small business’s goals.

Jillian's Currently Reading: Guerrilla Marketing, 4th edition: Easy and Inexpensive Strategies for Making Big Profits from Your Small Business
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