Is marketing overwhelm holding your business back?


It’s easy to be inspired by all the marketing ideas and strategies on offer. But, there’s a risk...

My previous article looked at my marketing resolutions for the year ahead. I focused on the 5 things that I know I need to do better this year.

One of the issues I almost covered was coping with the sheer amount of marketing content and advice out there - but I decided it needed a whole article. 

It can be overwhelming deciding what to read, who to listen to - and especially what to do. It’s an issue that affects solo, small businesses and SMEs - even when there’s a marketing person in place.

What can become paralysing is deciding which of these competing marketing ideas deserve precious time and money in your business, and which simply need to be ditched. But advice comes our way in a number of time consuming forms.

I hope some of the following tips will help you save time and decide what will work for you:

Be selective with those marketing books

I really must stop buying marketing books - until I've read the ones I already have. But, there’s plenty of new ones. According to Amazon, 761 new marketing books (print and e-books) have been listed in the past 30 days. Again - that’s a lot of advice if you have the time to digest it.

Ditch those email sign-ups

And then there are the email sign-ups. I had over 500 unopened emails at the end of 2016, probably 400 were business related newsletters, some of which I couldn’t even remember signing up for. I was keeping them for a time when I might get round to reading them. That was never going to happen.

Decide who really resonates with you

Whether it’s via books, webinars or newsletters - try to think about who resonates with you. Does their advice add value to your business? Do their values sit well with yours?

I have my favourite writers on things like content, copywriting and small business marketing - these are the areas important to my business. I have 3-4 people whose websites I follow and books I am actually reading. That’s enough. All the others who clutter my thinking have been unsubscribed - and I already feel like I am achieving more.

Cut out the marketing you don’t enjoy

Networking, writing content, social media, email marketing, landing pages, telemarketing, public speaking - the tactical options to market your business really can be overwhelming. 

One of my tips in my previous article was inspired by someone who stopped doing the marketing he didn’t enjoy - and focused on what he did. It generated great results. Again, doing less can lead to more.

Still feeling overwhelmed?

As well as my own website, you might find the Watertight Marketing website of help. It’s based on the award winning marketing book by Bryony Thomas and is very much focused on the small business/SME audience. The blog regularly features marketing tips to help you gain clarity and there’s a number of free downloads.

I’m an Accredited Consultant with Watertight Marketing, trained and licensed to offer Watertight Marketing services, as well as being a coach on our Masterplan 12 month marketing course.


It’s easy to be inspired by all the marketing ideas and strategies on offer. But, there’s a risk you could be smothering your business and potentially harming your progress.

The answer is to get clarity, set your priorities, use the advice that will support it - and move forward with confidence.


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