According to Curata research, now more than 90% of companies have marketing calendars. Why do you think marketing teams and companies are shifting towards this?
It’s because organized marketers and marketing teams who actively preplan their strategies are 331% more likely to get success than those who do not.
There are a number of stats out there to tell you how much importance an organized calendar holds in the life of marketers. A marketer’s mind is always full of upcoming meetings, events, campaigns to run, tasks to do immediately, and so much more. But, if you know how to effectively manage a calendar, trust us, you will be relaxed and have everything in front of you to clearly see what you should prioritize and what not.
Keep reading on to find effective calendar management strategies for digital marketers to ace their productivity.
Use The Right Calendar For Effective Calendar Management
Using a paper calendar on your desk and filling it with reminders and doodles is becoming a thing of the past. A digital calendar, accessible on a device like a smartphone or a computer, is used by the vast majority of modern individuals. Consequently, today’s calendars can go anywhere with you and are always safe in the cloud for safekeeping.
There is a wide variety of calendar apps out there, perfect for users of varying technical abilities. The trick is finding (or making) one that has all the functionality necessary to assist in the user’s specific routine. A small business owner may want to streamline administrative duties and require just a great phone system while a busy CEO may need assistance with a full schedule of meetings.
Choose the Right Scheduling Software
You’ve probably been on an email or text thread with multiple individuals attempting to establish a mutually agreeable time for a gathering or meeting. And you know what a waste of time it is because you’ll need to take time out of your day to schedule those encounters. If you find yourself constantly scheduling new meetings with clients or coworkers, you may want to look into an automated meeting set-up platform like Taggg. Not just this, you can find plenty of smart automation tools to help you in your tedious tasks.
With this, you have to send an invitation to your contact to connect with you. You will determine the availability you would like to share with your contact. Once they do the same you are connected!
Make A Prioritization Matrix
To get things done in the appropriate order, prioritization is essential. The Eisenhower box, also known as a priority matrix, is a useful tool for prioritizing and organizing your schedule’s worth of activities.
You can use these questions to help you prioritize your chores by placing them in one of four categories. Is it absolutely necessary that you attend to task X right this second? Alternatively, does taskER require immediate attention, or do you have a couple of days before it gets urgent?
After that, prioritize your to-dos by assigning each one different color on your calendar’s to-do list. Each morning, look over your calendar and rearrange the colors to reflect the order of importance for the day. With regular practice, you can become an expert at scheduling and time management.
Setting Aside Regular Break Times
You will thank yourself for the gaps you will put in while doing calendar management. Because from meetings to day to day tasks you will be exhausted if you don’t give yourself a few minutes to get yourself back. Put some breathing room between your scheduled activities so you can get your mind right for the next task. Schedule pre-meeting preparation time mechanically with the help of your calendaring app.
Make sure to fit in some exercise and quality family time to help you recharge. Stephen Covey suggests in his book The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People that one should pay close attention to the P/PC ratio.
P represents “productivity,” or the results of your efforts. Your capacity to get the job done is measured in terms of your “production capability” (PC). Maintaining health and getting enough sleep are crucial to your productivity. A decline is inevitable if there is no time for self-care.
Use Different Time Zones
Including multiple time zones in your calendar app is another helpful digital hack. This comes in handy when communicating with international coworkers and clients, for whom 3:00 PM local time may be 1:00 AM your time.
A specific calendar’s time zone can be adjusted, making it easier to stay in touch with coworkers and loved ones back home while you’re away on business.
Perform in Time Blocks
Some of the most successful people in the world break up their days and weeks into manageable bits of time. Gary Vaynerchuk, CEO, and entrepreneur, meticulously arranges his day down to the second, ensuring that not a single minute is wasted by only attending meetings that last no longer than five minutes.
While that level of precision isn’t required, it is helpful to have a firm grasp on how much time various jobs actually require, allowing you to allocate precisely that amount of time to their completion. To maximize productivity, it helps avoid over- or under-scheduling and streamlines the process of setting priorities for work.
Integrate Your Chat or CMS Platforms
Calendars or scheduling software do not have to be a stand-alone on your calendar management. You can integrate them with your chatting platforms or CMS. You can also integrate your project management tools with your calendar for a more streamlined workflow.
You may save yourself a lot of time and frustration by connecting your calendar to your content management system (CMS) or social media scheduling app. By doing so, you can avoid scheduling competing events alongside your duties. And it ensures that your content operations stay on pace.
Apply the Pomodoro Technique
You can get more done in less time and with less interruption by setting a timer. The Pomodoro Technique is a popular time management strategy. Basically, you pick an activity and then estimate how long it will take you to finish it. Then, give yourself 25 minutes of uninterrupted concentration.
Take a five-minute pause after the first twenty-five minutes to refresh yourself. Get up, walk about, and drink some water. Start a new 25-minute timer after the first five, and keep going like that until the job is done.
Color Coding Your Calendar Can Do Wonders
If we can give anything a name, our brains can work with it more efficiently. Using a color-coded calendar serves the same purpose. You can more easily picture yourself doing the work.
The best method to get a quick snapshot of your day is to color-code and categorize your calendar events.
For business owners and managers, this works as well as it does for individuals. Color-coding your calendar might help you and your team stay on the same page as the day progresses.
Personal time and work time can be separated, and tasks can be assigned different colors to indicate their importance. Use orange for meetings with clients and yellow with your superior, red for projects that require attention to detail and purple for those that require creativity, and so on.
Remember The 4 D’s of Time Management
With the help of the 4 Ds (eliminate, delegate, postpone, and do), individuals can more easily prioritize their responsibilities.
To put it another way, the 4 Ds of time management can boost productivity by effectively allocating resources and simplifying the decision-making process.
We’ll examine the 4Ds in detail now:
- Delete: Reduce your workload by learning to use the word “no.” Getting rid of the extraneous stuff at work, like useless emails and pointless meetings, will free up more time for the things that really matter. Things that seemed crucial at the start of the week may seem unnecessary right now. Consequently, you should eliminate such activities so your schedule appears less cluttered.
- Delegate: One of the skills one must acquire to advance in one’s career is the ability to delegate tasks to others. If the individual to whom the task is being transferred has the necessary expertise, it is one of the most efficient ways to get things done.
- Defer: Plans that don’t seem as pressing in practice can be put on hold till later.
- Do It: it’s as simple as that. These are active, time-sensitive tasks that can’t wait.
Using these four criteria, you may figure out if you should start looking for work right now, later, or never.
Reminders are a great tool for keeping on top of your schedule. This will ensure that you don’t miss any crucial appointments or deadlines. You can schedule anything from a reminder to drink water to a shareholders’ meeting. Not only will you be held more accountable, but you’ll also be able to audit your time to figure out where you may be more efficient.
And Set Them Strategically
Reminders are one of a calendar’s most useful yet often ignored features. The majority of us just use the default. However, it can be useful in other contexts when utilized appropriately and sparingly.
So, next week you have a meeting planned. Schedule a reminder for a week in advance to ensure that the agenda is distributed to all participants. Schedule another alert for the day before so you have plenty of notice. Plus, if you tend to get lost in thought and forget the passage of time, set the last reminder for an hour beforehand.
Put AI in Charge of All the Tedious Tasks
It’s hardly surprising that calendar apps would include AI behind the scenes to build “smart” calendars as AI and machine learning grow increasingly pervasive in everyday applications.
One useful feature would be for the software to keep track of how much time is spent on recurring tasks, so that the user may be advised on how much time to set aside for each task. The ability to automatically book available meeting spaces and add conferencing equipment when a conference is booked is another example of an intelligent feature.
Time Boxing Can Be Your Savior
Give up your list-making ways and try timeboxing, a simple yet effective calendar management method for getting more done in less time. Here, you’ll open your calendar and devote the specified amount of time to the activity at hand, as described in further detail in another Calendar article.
Timeboxing, as advocated by HBR’s Marc Zao-Sanders, supposedly helps people “do the right thing at the right time.” It also “allows you to interact and work more efficiently.” Timeboxing not only helps you get more done in less time, but it also improves your sense of agency and allows you to resist the effects of Parkinson’s Law.
Keep The Emails For Later
Depending on the person, checking email might quickly become a significant portion of their day. It’s counterproductive to constantly interrupt your work to check your inbox. Alternating between activities requires time and effort on your part. Set aside time each day or after completing a specific task to check your inbox.
Be sure to let your coworkers know and set clear expectations if you decide to schedule regular email checking. Also, you can use email software to automate your email process and it will leave you with more time on hand.
Review Your Calendar After Managing It
Take a deep breath and look at your calendar to review everything.
Check your schedule once in a while. Verify that it accurately reflects your current priorities and is aiding in striking a healthy work-life balance. However, if this is not the case, you should determine which of your current commitments can be dropped or delegated.
As a digital marketer, your pace of life will always accelerate as you will keep going up in your profession and as per the digital marketing trends. And that’s why always having your day, weeks, or even months sorted out can keep the burden off of your shoulders. Also, keeping track of everyone’s schedules is crucial for maintaining morale and maximizing team output as a leader. Though deliberate work and some proper calendar management skills are required, the rewards are substantial. We hope the above-mentioned calendar management strategies help you in your time management and get you through the day like a pro.
Trevor is a SaaS growth consultant and co-founder of Taggg which helps schedule group meetings effortlessly by connecting calendars and overlaying availability. He leads product development and built Taggg to solve scheduling problems other software solutions have not solved particularly for active schedulers.