Hey, everyone, welcome back! We are going to be talking about marketing fatigue.
I know that this is a little bit different than the kinds of things I normally talk about, and it’s a little bit more of a lofty topic — kind of more philosophical. But it is something that needs to be addressed. Because marketing fatigue, if not handled properly, will lead to overall burnout in your business. Obviously, no one wants that.
But also, it’s that hamster wheel feeling, and I know I talked about the hamster wheel of content creation quite a bit. But that hamster wheel feeling can really apply to anything in your business. And anytime you feel like something’s just never done, or “Oh my gosh, I’ve got to do that more? Again? Like what is going on here?” That right there is fatigue.
Now, if you aren’t still sure what marketing fatigue is, I want you to think about it like this: braces fatigue or mask fatigue.
This idea of fatigue was first introduced to me by our son’s orthodontist. My nine-year-old has braces and recently, someone commented, “Wow, they’re doing braces really young these days, huh?” And, yeah, they are–much younger than I had braces.
When we were first referred to the orthodontist, I initially thought, “Yea, he’s eight. Why would we do that before his adult teeth are even in?” And our dentist said, “Well, you know, his teeth are kind of wonky, and it’s going to be increasingly difficult for him to brush and floss properly until all of his adult teeth come in and they are ready to be straightened, so I just want a consult.”
We went to the orthodontist, and they’re like, “We want to do two phases.” My first gut reaction was like, “Yeah, no, I’m not paying for braces twice. This is a money grab. I am not here for this.”
But the orthodontist explained it to me like this: our son has multiple problems in his mouth. His mouth is pretty small, he’s got wonky teeth, his palate is the wrong shape, and he has a pretty severe overbite. And he said, “You know, for us to correct all of those problems, it would be at least three years straight of him wearing braces. And what we have found is that kids just aren’t compliant for that length of time. Anything longer than 18 months or so, their compliance level dips way down. And then ultimately, it takes either longer for them to have their treatment, or the treatment never fully finishes, and their teeth revert back to how they were and they go into adulthood without all the benefits of braces, despite the fact that they had to wear them.”
Once it was explained to me like that, I said, “Oh, yeah, so we are doing this. We’re paying twice the amount, of course, but we are doing this to help prevent that fatigue.”
Now, if you’ve never done the braces thing, or you don’t have kids with braces, think of it like mask fatigue. I don’t know where you are at in the country or the world as you’re listening to this or when you’re listening to it, but at the time I wrote this, our state just reinstated a mask mandate for all indoor locations, vaccinated or not, as well as outdoor gatherings.
I am a team player for most mask things, but it is really difficult for me at the gym.
So this morning, I worked out and then I went to the shower and I forgot to bring my clean mask with me — I only had the sweaty, gross mask and I didn’t want to put that back on after I took a shower. So I walked from the shower over to the locker without a mask. And I got the dirtiest look from a woman passing me in that very wide, spacious hallway. I’d also like to point out there were only like five of us in the locker room. It was totally fine. But I got that dirty look.
And I was like, “Hey, I just worked out for an hour with a mask. I am doing my best here. I just had a 10 second slip up — don’t give me the dagger eyes.” But that right there is my version of mask fatigue, I just don’t want to put the mask back on at the gym. And I definitely have only worked out twice this week as a result.
So mask fatigue or braces fatigue, those make sense to you. Now let’s translate that to your business. And we’re going to talk a little bit about marketing fatigue. When you start feeling like, “Oh, my goodness, I have to do that again?”, it is time to take steps to combat this marketing fatigue. If you don’t, that burnout issue will rear its ugly head.
But how do you remove that marketing fatigue? What are the steps that you should actually be taking? There are three things that you can do.
- What you can pare down?
- What can you fully release?
- What can you say no to?
I’m going to dive into each of these in a little more detail here.
What can you pare down?
One of the things I discuss with all of my clients whether they’re doing done-for-you content work with me, or they’re just kind of building their own DIY content creation, content planning visibility strategy is that it’s always going to be smarter for you to condense your creation time.
That is why I introduced the Show Up System–do a bunch of content brainstorming now, plan a bunch out in a batch, and then everything kind of just happens for you the rest of the week, or the rest of the month, or whichever kind of batching that you choose to do. It’s why I introduced that content template system in the Show Up System–so people would have the tools to condense their creation time.
That goes for any business activity, but specifically, any marketing activity. If you’re creating brand awareness videos for ads, don’t create one every day, do all five during one specific time block or however it works for you.
It’s spreading these activities out that makes you feel you’re always doing them; that is what leads to marketing fatigue and burnout.
One of the other things that I have done to decrease my marketing fatigue is I hired a podcast manager several months back, and it has been fantastic. Shout out to Haley from Heart Centered Podcasting! It has released a bunch of regular activities from my weekly schedule. Some of those things are things that cannot be done until the week before the show, so it’s something that I wouldn’t have been able to batch. Other things are things I probably could have batched I just never really got around to doing it that way. But either way, paring that stuff down and hiring someone to help me with that has really decreased the fatigue I feel around creating a weekly podcast.
The second thing is, what can you fully release?
I hired a podcast manager and that was me paring down, because I’m not fully releasing the podcast creation. I am 100% the only one that can record episodes. But I was able to release some parts of it, which was paring down. So what can you fully release?
And one of the things you can do right now is choosing to be on just one social media platform. Maybe for you, that means you are literally not on a platform, you post nothing. Maybe for you, especially if you’re a Show Up System user, you are primarily on one social media platform and you’re only engaging on one, but you have a limited presence on some other platforms using the Show Up System templates so that it can be an easy way to add to your contents its system activities.
Or can you outsource your ads, if ads are a part of your marketing world? What can you fully release or allow someone else to completely control so you are not in the daily grind activity of it?
And then third is just simply saying no more often.
This one is hard for a lot of solopreneurs. Once you start getting used to it, you’re going to almost become addicted to it. Like, “Oh, what else can I stop saying yes to? What else can I just not do?”
An example in my own business for this recently is I had participated in a giveaway at the end of July through the beginning of August, and it was great, it was a wonderful list-building activity, and it worked out really well.
I had two more requests like that come in on the heels of that giveaway. One was another giveaway coming up this autumn. And it looked like a good opportunity, so I decided to participate in that. And I thought, “Okay, so I had one affiliate promo period at the beginning of August, I’ll have another one at the beginning of October.” Doing the math, that’s two months in between, so I won’t create an email list fatigue issue. And it also won’t feel so heavy for me.
But I also had some other requests. I had one of my clients doing a launch and she asked me to be a part of it as an affiliate, and it was right on the heels of that first giveaway. And then I had another content launch that a friend of mine was doing that’s going to be right at the end of September, and it was probably something I would have normally participated in — the product I definitely agree with and I have used it, so I could stand behind it.
But I had already committed to this other thing at the beginning of October and I said, “You know what, I just don’t have to do this. This is not something that has to be a part of my business.”
Learning to say no more often, and as a result of these things, not having to market as much with my list, with my social media audience, all of that is something I’m doing to set healthy boundaries in my business and make sure that the marketing fatigue doesn’t even become an issue. I’m preventing it before it happens.
Set Up A Marketing Fatigue Test
If any of these things sound familiar to you, if you I feel like marketing fatigue is something that’s a real problem in your business right now, I would suggest you go through each of those three things (pick one thing that you can pare down, one thing that you can fully release, and just commit to saying no to at least every other opportunity that comes your way) for the next quarter.
At the end of the quarter, reevaluate. What’s working? Ask yourself, did my overall lead generation suffer as a result of me paring these things down or releasing them?
If you’re still in the same profitability zone, it was something that you didn’t have to be doing in the first place.
This has been a huge business lesson for me over the years. You know, I have talked on the show a couple different times about how I took (quite possibly) the longest maternity leave ever–it was almost two years long. One of the reasons I did that is because I had serious marketing fatigue going into that season. I started paring things back. At one point, for a solid year of that time period, I had my revolving monthly business expenses down to less than $100 a month. That was paying for things like Adobe Creative Cloud and paying for certain $9/month services and things like that.
I scaled back immensely, but one of the reasons I did that is because I had huge burnout and fatigue from all of the things I had been doing prior to that year.
I was actually doing a lot of busy work — things I was doing in the name of working, in the name of promoting and marketing my business. But as it turns out, they weren’t actually producing that many leads and that meant that they weren’t producing that much income.
So when I came back to my business, I committed to less busy work. When I relaunched this podcast, for example, I said, “You know what? Yes, it’s a weekly podcast. But if I miss a week, it’s okay. No one’s gonna come screaming at me.” And I think I’ve only missed two weeks since I came back two years ago. But neither of those times did anyone say, “Hey, what happened? I didn’t see your show on Monday!”
So as you’re looking at what you can pare down, what you can fully release, and what you can say no to, yes, there may be a few people here and there that notice. Not everyone. You don’t have a responsibility to be perfect all the time — obviously, mastery over perfection. But in addition to that, when you’re looking at what you can pull back from to decrease your marketing fatigue, look for activities that aren’t tied to results.
And that is why in both the Show Up System, and in Content Lab, my last two training sessions are all about measuring your results. I love having consistent content. I preach and live and breathe by it. But if that consistent content is not pulling in results for your business, you need to know so you can adjust.
And the easiest way for you to know that 100% is to measure what you’re doing.
When you are appropriately measuring what you’re doing, it’s a lot easier to make these decisions, it’s a lot easier to decide what to fully release because you can actually start looking at which things are not pulling their weight in your business. And those are the things that you can put on the chopping block.
I hope this helps you remove marketing fatigue! It is a real thing and I don’t want you to experience it like I have in the past. If you just take a few moments to internalize these three steps to avoiding it, I think you are going to be much happier as a result.