This post is a part two to my previous post, How to be productive when your business hits a slow period.
It’s tough when you are trying to build a business and are still waiting for clients/customers to come in.
Yes, if you are a service provider you can offer your services for free or heavily discounted in exchange for testimonials/shares; or if you have a product-based business you can exchange products with another shop that is willing. BUT, doing those things won’t really pay the bills or bring in tons of revenue.
If you have systems in place; a business that is fully prepared, and the mindset of success, you CAN build an exceptional business.
So, here are 15 more things you can do to be productive when you are waiting to become fully booked.
This post may contain affiliate links. If you click through the links and make a purchase, I may make a small commission, at no extra cost to you.
Productive Tip #16: Learn a new social media platform
When you first start marketing on social media, it is suggested that you learn/use only 1-2 platforms in the beginning, get to know those platforms inside and out, and when you are ready, branch out to other platforms.
When you have downtime in your business, it would be an excellent time to get to know another platform and extend your marketing to a different audience!
Side note: you don’t HAVE to be on multiple platforms! If a certain platform doesn’t fit your business, don’t force your business to be on it.
Productive Tip #17: Create a webinar or course
Webinars can be a little nerve-wracking, but some people enjoy learning that way. You can create a webinar as a freebie opt-in, or as part of a paid program.
There are many programs out there to record and edit your webinar, as well as platforms to host them.
Another great thing to create is an ecourse. An ecourse is a course you can create for others to learn on their own time.
Productive Tip #18: Review/revise your business plan (or create one!)
Even though it makes one uneasy to not have clients (I bet you’re thinking about not being able to pay a certain bill or have extra funds for the month) it is a great opportunity to make sure you are on the right track with your business.
When you first started your business venture, you should have created a business plan, so that you had an idea of what you were going to do, how you were going to do it, and what goals you are going to put in place to get there.
If you don’t have a business plan in place, I highly suggest you take this time to create one! This is the perfect opportunity to get your affairs in order and to bring some organization to your business.
You can find great business plan templates online. Just search for one within your niche. (A great place to start is Google and Pinterest!).
Other planners that can help you are Classy Career Girl’s 90-day planner and It’s All You Boo’s Slay your goals planner. Both are printable and easy to follow! I definitely use both within my business.
Productive Tip #19: Create a task schedule
One of the things that keep me incredibly organized in my business is a task schedule.
To do this I create a list of tasks I need to be done during the week (batch graphics, batch scheduling, draft blog posts, publish blog posts, etc.) and also list the days I am in service during the week (Sunday-Wednesday and Friday).
Next, I write in what I want done on each day. So, I have assigned a task to each day of the week I am working. My task list looks like this:
This is a great way for me to stay organized and productive in my week and allows me to get quite a few things done. And if I complete my task for the day, I can always work ahead, or have time to do other things on my list. Or, I can “reward” myself by having the rest of the day to do my mommy/wife duties.
Productive Tip #20: Find and join NEW Facebook groups
There seems to be a Facebook group for just about everything nowadays. A few of the popular ones I’m in touch on the topic of blogging, Pinterest, virtual assisting, online/small businesses, etc.
These groups are great ways to network and advertise your business or blog (only when allowed of course!). Utilize the search bar and find groups in your niche.
Shameless plug: If you are looking for graphic designs, SVGs, digital downloads, etc., feel free to join MY group!
Productive Tip #21: Leave Facebook groups!
Go through the FB groups you’re already in and see if the information included in them is something that you are still interested in. Maybe you haven’t visited the group for a while or forgot it was even there. (Facebook limits the reach of the groups that you don’t interact with so that may be why it stops showing u in your feed.) If you are no longer interested in the group, you can leave it. Also, if you aren’t active, the group owner may purge you from the group as well.
Productive Tip #22: Research business tools and programs
Downtime is the best time to research business tools and programs that may help you with time management or productivity.
There are so many tools out there, and you may want to try them all but don’t have the time. This is a great time to research what’s out there, compare services, prices, and features.
This page will get you started.
Productive Tip #23: Check finances/create a budget
A lot of the things that get overlooked in a business is the finances. If you’re anything like how I used to be, you ‘guess’ how much money you have and go from there. You sometimes forget to record incoming payments, or even forget that an outgoing payment automatically comes out and may leave you in an unfortunate situation.
I knew that I really needed to get my finances in order; after all, this is a business! I’m in the business to make money, not ignore it.
The best thing I did was enroll Quickbooks Accounting. By connecting all my accounts Quickboos automatically collected information for me and made it SO EASY when it came to tax time. (I was able to file taxes on January 20th!)
By knowing all of this information first hand, I was able to create a budget for my business and stick to it! Here are some printable worksheets you can use.
Productive Tip #24: Look into hiring help
If you are at a point in your business where you need help running certain areas, you can look into hiring help!
Not many people have this luxury, but if you do, there are many people who can help you achieve success in your business.
Great places to start are virtual assistants or social media managers. These people can take a lot of the marketing and day-to-day work off your plate, so you have more time to create and run your business.
You can find people for hire on various Facebook groups, or even by putting out an ad! Virtual jobs are very “in” right now and you will have no problem finding someone. Be sure to do your research to ensure they’re qualified to do the job.
Learn more about the services I can offer you here.
Productive Tip #25: Create a "home" for your most used links
One of my BIGGEST business secrets is my Airtable and Trello boards of links.
Let me explain.
I keep ALL my links handy so when I need to access them, I can copy and paste in 5 seconds.
I have created Airtable bases that house my various affiliate links; blog articles I loved and want to refer back to; courses/ebooks I’ve purchased and want to refer to; and content ideas.
For Trello, I have created boards that house the links to all my published blog posts.
So why not keep them all in one place? Well, I started using Trello first and fell head over heels with the platform! More recently is when I got into using Airtable. I am still learning about all of its features, but it is quickly growing on me, too.
Productive Tip #26: Create a "home" for things you "say" regularly
If you have an iPhone like I do, I use the Notes app to create little promos that I post regularly.
For example, I have a note advertising my newsletter and the link they can go to sign up for it!
This helps me TREMENDOUSLY when I’m scrolling Facebook and see a chance to promote myself and/or my business.
If you have an Android, I’m sure there is a similar app on your phone. Otherwise, there are tons of apps in the app store that’ll work for you!
Productive Tip #27: Get on TikTok!
Noooo I don’t mean start scrolling! I mean, get your business on TikTok!
TT seems to be the newest and very lucrative platform for small business owners! I myself only have a personal account, BUT I recently started posting a few business promos here and there… and they do better than my personal posts for sure.
I have not fully committed to using TT for my business (right now I’m focusing on FB, IG, and Pinterest) but I do plan on getting there in the future.
Productive Tip #28: Sign up for affiliate programs for things you use regularly and love
Almost every product or service has an affiliate program you can sign up for.
An affiliate program is where you can refer the company to your audience and in return receive some sort of compensation for it when people sign up or purchase using your link.
I HIGHLY suggest you apply for programs for products and services you know and love.. because how are you supposed to recommend someone that you know nothing about?
PS: affiliate programs are a great way to create passive income.
Productive Tip #29: Build a portfolio
Portfolios are a great way to showcase your talent(s) and to provide proof of your skills.
And who doesn’t LOVE showing off their best work?
You can create an online portfolio on your website/blog; a Pinterest board; a drive; Google doc; or PDF. And probably many other ways, too.
Productive Tip #30: File your taxes!
As a small business owner, you file taxes more than once a year. We also have quarterly taxes, too.
I cannot stress enough to always be on top of your finances and taxes. You don’t want to be stuck with a huge tax bill, or file late.
Be sure to look up all the tax laws and requirements for your state!