You're right, marketing sucks.

You’re right, marketing sucks.

You avoid marketing like the plague. You’ve hired out some parts of your business, found ways to make other parts easier, and you have those parts of your business you deeply love. But marketing? Pleh. You spit it out like that time you drank rancid half and half in your coffee.

When you finally manage to make time for marketing, it’s a marathon. You’re either out of cash or out of ways to procrastinate, and you need this to work, so it’s go time. Like, there’s $.73 in the bank go time.

You’re right, marketing this way sucks. It’s an exhausting marathon that sucks big hairy balls.

What if you came up with a different way to tackle the marketing marathon?

Let’s say you’re training for a marathon, and you need to run 14 miles a week. You can run 2 miles a day, or…you know, forget about it and then try running 14 miles in a day.

That same training schedule also means you’ll need to run 56 miles a month. Again, you can run 2 miles a day, or…you know, try for 56 miles in a single day.

I guarantee you’ll hate life after trying to run 56 miles with no daily training. Just like you hate marketing after doing none of it for 30 days and then trying to squeeze a month’s worth into a few hours when the pressure of your bank account is too much to bear.

There’s another way…ready?

Do only those marketing tasks you love, and do them every day.

You have full permission to cancel your Twitter account, to delete your blog, to ignore your e-mail newsletter, and/or to otherwise make sure you don’t do that marketing thing you hate any longer.

Remember two things: you must replace those things you ditch with valid marketing strategies that you do daily, and Facebook alone is not a viable marketing strategy. Ever. Even though it’s tons of fun.

Just as a marathon runner needs a few ways to train — indoors, outdoors, intervals, sprinting, pacing — you need a few ways to market.

Grab a piece of paper and write down all the ways you LOVE to market. And I mean L-O-V-E. Not tolerate, not feel guilty about failing to do, not “should” do, but LOVE.

Here’s a list of 16 ways to help you find ways to market that you heart heart heart.

+ Offer mini-products and guides to build your e-mail list (free with opt-in, like the Fuck Yah Club!)
+ Send regular newsletters via e-mail to keep your peeps in the loop and buying your wares
+ Invite others to guest post on your blog and reciprocate in kind to build your audience
+ Rent a booth at an expo or conference to spread your message and meet potential clients in person
+ Teach 101 classes and invite students to learn more through your website or through additional products
+ Send snail mail to keep your peeps informed of new products and offers
+ Hold free instructional seminars online or in person
+ Call potential clients to follow up instead of e-mailing
+ Blog weekly.
+ Keep an ongoing list of your available spots and openings in your sidebar.
+ Connect with past clients by sending thank you gifts and soliciting referrals.
+ Contact past clients with a limited time offer to make hiring you again easy.
+ Meet with business owners 1-on-1 to brainstorm mutually beneficial events and promotions.
+ Host business owner meet and greets to make friends and talk shop.
+ Offer samples of your work to convert peeps to paying clients.
+ Submit your work to contests, magazines, newspapers, and/or blogs.

From here, it’s simple: do 15 minutes of marketing daily, and do only those marketing activities you adore. If you hate talking to business owners, find a different way. Can’t stand blogging? You don’t have to do it.

There are ways around not doing any one marketing activity you can’t stand, but throwing out ALL marketing activities will lead to a cash-starved business in no time.

From here, work 15 minutes of marketing time into your weekday calendar, and then hold yourself accountable for doing it. Marketing is extraordinarily painful when you try to run the marathon in one day, and you don’t have to do that anymore.  You’re ready to train like the marketing marathoner you are — slow and steady.

P.S. How to make a marketing calendar in about 15 minutes.