Sales and Marketing Burn-Out- IT's REAL!

Owning your own business and being the marketer, recruiter, staffing person, HR, money manager, client supporter- is A HUGE amount of responsibilities and commitments.

Some of you may have (or be) the marketer of a small business.

Most of the time, I talk to small business owners who either run and manage everything themselves, are a husband and wife team, or have a small staff helping them with office work.

Getting burned-out HAPPENS.

Our company has been in business for over 11 years. In that time we have had clients who have passed away unexpectedly, retired, sold their business, or just simply closed their doors. (Which makes me feel old!) ????

We have also had the pleasure of working with clients over the years who have been with us for 7 years or more and are still “growing” strong!

Those who are the most successful have a few commonalities that help them avoid burn-out.

“Sales (and recruiting) are hyper-social, customer-facing roles that can get highly stressful. We all know sales is the job for the people person — the high-flying, always-on-the-go charmer that’s on the phone, in meetings and/or closing deals. The same goes for recruitment — you’re constantly talking to people, helping them find their next big opportunity.”

Don Erwin,

Here are some tips that help business owners and marketers avoid feeling tired, stressed out, burned out, flat.

Start Each Day with a Plan

Begin your day making an actual action plan and the research to back up said action plan for the rest of the day.

  1. Make sure you have all of the things needed to carry out your list of plans for the day. (Supplies, phone numbers, route, business cards etc)
  2. Make “planning for your day” a regular habit. No matter how good or bad times are, you have a familiar process that helps you get things done.
  3. Completing some, or all of your planned tasks gives you a positive sense of accomplishment.

Avoid Interruption in Your Day Whenever Possible

  • When planning your day, build in time for meetings.
  • If you know you have a meeting at 2pm on the phone or in-person, make sure your previous task ends around 1:30pm, to give you time to re-focus.
  • If you know you will be on the road for the entire day, don’t make phone meeting plans- wait for a day/time when you can be in the office.

Find a Sales and Ownership Strategy that is Right for You

There are hundreds of sales strategies and business ownership models that you can try. Over the course of time, you hear all kinds of presentations, tips, sales conferences and webinars that offer advice and new information.

Spend some time:

  • Seeing what works
  • Understanding what works for you
  • Actively measuring said success

One strategy might work great in a certain location, but not in your town or for your business model.

There isn’t a one-size-fits-all marketing and sales plan. Do what works for YOU.

Coaching and Mentorship

We’re taught as a society that strength is being able to do things alone, but in sales and success that’s not true.

Don Erwin,

If you, as the owner, are also the salesperson and marketer- seek coaching and mentorship for yourself.

If you are the marketer/salesperson hired by the owner, ask for coaching, mentorship, and self-improvement opportunities.

Being burned out can come during good times and tough times. Having a mentor or a coach can help you walk through those feelings a little easier.

Keep it Interesting, Make it Fun

If you have hired employees to do the sales and marketing for you, create an environment that people feel they can flourish in and that they also simply enjoy.

Communication is key.

I never want to be seen as “inaccessible” at my company. Try to have check-ins and conversations that are straightforward, transparent and frequent.

Really listen, especially to details about life at home. That way, you can help them find ways to disconnect and recharge.

Be as Productive and Efficient as Possible

Aside from meeting sales quotes or new client quotas, consider some of these time killers:

  • What does it take to get on someone’s calendar?
  • How do I engage with a new prospect or referral source, and how long does it take to get them in a meaningful dialog?

Some people need a phone call. Others prefer email and text. Take notes, observe which method a person responds to best. Noting their preferences makes your job that much easier.

Automate Tasks

Every job comes with some tasks that must be done manually, but what strategies can you implement that help with automation?

Are their apps or software (CRMs?) that will help you keep notes, make appointments, recruit staff? Learn how to use them effectively.

Stop Wasting Time on the Wrong Accounts

How many times have you been really excited about a potential high-fit customer, only to discover you were way off-base and have to go back to the drawing board?

Wasted productivity on poor prospects is one of the biggest contributors to sales burnout and it happens easily, even to the best salespeople.

Half of the sales burnout battle is knowing who the right prospects are – in this case, quality definitely trumps quantity.

Finding the right leads from the get-go is key.

Take Care of You.

In sales and recruiting, you’re going to face failure and rejection almost every day.

Be aware of how this can affect you. Understand that it hurts, and it sucks, but rejections are part of the job.

Take a day off. Treat yourself. Everything and everyone will be there waiting for you when you return.

Stuff That Helps Avoid Burnout

Headspace is an app that helps you relax and clear your mind. Just a few minutes a day of positive focus can “change your mind”.

Kevin DeYoung’s Crazy Busy is an excellent book on being overloaded, and finding space to do, as he puts it, nothing at all.

Counseling through an online counselor like Talkspace, or in-person might be a good idea too. The smartest people I know, talk to a counselor or a therapist regularly.

Other Stress-Busters Include:

  • Go for a walk.
  • Drive, in silence
  • Meditation
  • Yoga
  • Disconnect from work at a certain time of day. Completely disconnect.

Work Time is Work Time.

Your Time is Your Time.

Make work a focused, organized, exciting and energetic experience that you put your all into. Then take your free time to relax and enjoy your life. Your work is part of, but not all of you.

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