The curse of entrepreneurship is an endless To Do List that never diminishes, only grows.

Seriously, how is it possible that in the time it takes us to cross one damn thing off the list, three new things have had to be added to the bottom?

And how is that everything on that list is a priority?

I don’t know about you but the only things on my To Do List that can ever reasonably wait are the tasks I’m doing for myself, for my business, not my clients.

Clients come with deadlines, needs, and expectations. When you’re a professional getting paid to provide a service, create a product, teach, coach, whatever, meeting the needs of your clients is non-negotiable.

Which means that when you’re faced with eleventy-billion things to do and only possibly have time to do maybe half of them (if you forego sleep, food, and any form of recreation…) it’s hardly surprising the stuff you need to do for yourself automatically drops to the bottom of the list.

If that shit doesn’t get done, you’re not letting anyone down.

The problem is, you are.

You’re letting down yourself. You’re letting down your business. You’re letting down you audience, followers, fans, and leads. You’re letting down your existing clients. And you’re letting down your bank balance.

I discovered this the hard way at the end of last year when I had to stop doing pretty much any marketing in my own business because I was so busy marketing everyone else’s businesses. I stopped vlogging, or blogging, or doing much of anything on social media. My newsletter stopped. Everything stopped.

And it was fine, for a few months.

Then I started to realise….I had no new clients coming in.

Zip, zilch, nada, the big goose egg.

We’re half-way through May and I now have leads coming in, new clients interested, my list is growing again, my social engagement is very slowly creeping back up, but it’s slow going even now, and that’s after a full month of working my tush off blogging once the new website was launched.

Content marketing is incredibly effective but it’s a long game. It’s not and never will be a quick fix.

It will be another 6 months before I get back the momentum I had built by the end of last year, and my bank account is groaning at the thought.

The problem with being the only person marketing your business is that if you don’t have time to work for yourself, there’s nobody marketing your business.

The lesson?

Failing to employ effective content marketing in your business simply isn’t an option.

Especially not if, like me, you have no other form of marketing going at the moment. I don’t pay for ads, my social media marketing is sporadic, and my networking virtually non-existent.

It’s all content, and I create all that content myself.

When I stop, everything stops.

When you’re not marketing you’re not generating leads, you’re not nurturing your existing leads, you’re not building your relationships, or ensuing your existing clients have a steady stream of new, helpful, valuable, free information that makes them appreciate you even more, that makes them more likely to buy from you again…

All because there are too many things on your To Do List and something has to give.

To Do Lists suck arse biscuits.

So what do we do, when we’re faced with that endless column of things that absolutely-have-to-get-done-right now, and we’re burnt out, busy, stressed, tired, and literally can’t cram another second of work into the day?

When we’re working so hard that we keep skipping meals because it takes too long to go buy groceries and there’s nothing left in the cupboards?

When we’re not actually being productive at all any more because we’re so exhausted and so HANGRY that we can’t concentrate on the work we do have time for?

Well, that my friend, is when we outsource…

Why You Should Be Outsourcing

My problem is that I’m a writer, and I won’t let anyone else write my content.

I can’t – my Type A personality and OCD kicks in and I just end up re-writing whatever people write for me.

Writing is my zone of genius, and you don’t outsource your zone of genius.

But if writing isn’t your zone of genius, please, for the love of all the gods and whatever other higher powers may be lurking out there, learn from my mistakes.

You see, I finally realised at the end of last year that the only way to find the time to actually market my business, was to start outsourcing everything that isn’t in my zone of genius.

I have a new rule.

I write.

I don’t to anything else.

If you check the blog you’ll see I’ve been writing a lot the last few months, and not just for my clients. The first thing I sorted out was writing the whole of my new website, and let me tell you THAT was a Herculean task.

Then I started creating new content. I finished my new book, and I got back to blogging. I haven’t quite worked back up to vlogging yet, but I’m very nearly there, and I did find time for a Facebook Live the other day.

So things are moving in the right direction!

My To Do List has mercifully shrunk, and it’s due to one reason, and one reason alone: I started outsourcing.

Big time.

Why Outsourcing Leads To Massive Growth

Is all this outsourcing costing me money? Yes, of course it is, people don’t work for free (nor should they). Is it worth it?

TOTALLY.

Outsourcing has given me back the time needed to do what I do best, and if I don’t do what I do best, I don’t make any money at all.

Doing what I do best I earn a lot more than I need to outsource the stuff that isn’t in my zone of genius.

The benefits of outsourcing are myriad but here are the ones you really care about:

  1. You will actually have time to buy food, eat food, sleep, walk your dog, see your friends, hit the gym, be bridesmaid at your brother’s wedding, look after your nieces, take your god-daughters to the cinema, and ice skating, and trampolining, and whatever else they feel like doing because really kids are just too much fun…
  2. If you’re working in your zone of genius and charging what you’re genuinely worth (not low-balling and making a pitiful amount per hour), the amount you earn in the hours you do work will still vastly exceed the amount you have to pay someone else to do the stuff outside your zone of genius.
  3. Your To Do List will shrink to a length that is actually manageable, and doesn’t look like something your dog unravelled from the bathroom.
  4. You will only spend your time working on things you genuinely enjoy doing and are really good at (your zone of genius!).
  5. You will see MASSIVE growth in your business. I started outsourcing things last year and it was, financially, my best year ever. Despite the slow start to the year while I figured out that I wasn’t outsourcing enough, this year is set to be even more profitable than last.

Top 3 Content Marketing Services To Outsource

Grand, so now we’re clear on that, you’re probably wondering exactly which content marketing services you need to outsource. Well here are the three I would pay someone else to do were it not for the fact all three happen to be my zone of genius:

Writing Website Copy

I do this for clients all the time and even so, writing my own website was, hands down, the single most stressful thing I’ve had to do in my business to date. There is so much to think about, so many pieces to fit together, and just so much of it. It never ends. Even when you think it’s done there’s more. Seriously, it’s a Pandora’s Box of misery, let someone else open it!

Blogging

While the website copy was the most time-consuming single thing I’ve ever done, blogging is an ongoing time vampire that will suck the life out of you if you’re not careful. I actually love all the researching, and writing, and polishing, and tweaking, and planning, and SEO, and figuring out how to leverage your blog to grow your list and earn you passive income…most people don’t.

Most people find it tedious, frustrating, thankless, and frequently don’t actually know how to do it effectively enough that all that hard work pays off. If you’re one of those people you have two choices, learn how to do it effectively and efficiently, to maximise your ROI and avoid total insanity, or get someone else to do it for you!

Writing A Business Book

I’ve just completed my first full-length business book and holy hell was that a marathon. It’s not the first book I’ve written. I’ve written multiple novels and other fictional works, and I pen business books for clients all the time, but it’s different when you’re doing it for yourself. You have no perspective, no distance, and I for one got serious writer’s block about half-way through (something that very rarely happens to me), because I was battling with a pretty major upper limit.

Whether you want to hire someone to write the whole book for you from scratch, or just need someone to help you tidy up what you’ve written yourself, this is one area that you absolutely should be outsourcing for maximum benefit.

I don’t outsource the writing of my books, but I absolutely outsource all editing and proofreading – it’s simply not something you can effectively do for yourself, even when you’re a professional editor/proofreader.

It’s not coincidental that the three things on this list are the three things I always recommend every online business focuses on: a cracking website, a killer blog schedule, and a book that’s effectively worked into your content marketing strategy.

They are big, huge, massively important things that are super-important for creating a hugely successful business and stimulating massive growth, but DAMN ARE THEY TOUGH.

I do all three for a living, all day, every day, and doing them for myself is still bloody difficult. They are my zone of genius, and still, finding the time for them is tough.

If they’re not your zone of genius, attempting to do any (let alone all) of them is only going to work for so long. Eventually you will reach a tipping point, where your business has grown to a point that you no longer have the time to work in and on your business and still get it all right.

When that time arrives, and you find yourself either putting a stop to your content marketing, or never getting started with it to begin with because you don’t know how, don’t have time, or simply can’t face it, outsource it to a pro.

Then go eat a sandwich (I recommend prosciutto and buffalo mozzarella with a hint of homemade pesto aioli).

If you’re not sure exactly what kind of content marketing you need in your business, book a free discovery call with me now and we can chat about what’s best for you and your business. And if you know exactly which content marketing service you need to hire someone else for, and just need to put the right person in place, check out my website copywriting services, blogging services, and ghostwriting services

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Hazel is an author, copywriter, content marketer and blogger. She specialises in helping creative entrepreneurs, coaches and small business owners harness the power of the pen (or keyboard!) to market their products and services through soulful selling. She's had several academic papers published internationally, and featured on sites such as The Huffington Post. In addition to her professional work as a writer, Hazel is also a fiction author. She has published several books and short stories, including The Uber Author Planner, Chasing Azrael, a Urban Fantasy novel, and Bleizgeist, a Dark Fantasy novella. Hazel has a regular weekly column on Sci-Fi Fantasy Network, and is currently working on her next novel, Death Becomes Me.