What do I mean by marketing ergonomics? It’s effective marketing that’s easy to get to and easy to do.
When I talk about marketing ergonomics, people usually think I am going to talk about advertising. Yes, advertising is part of marketing, but this is much broader. I consider everything work related that I do as marketing. I try to set my entire office up so everything I need is easy to do and easy to get to.
A lot of my work involves talking into a microphone. I spend around three hours a day talking into it. I use my microphone for podcasts, training calls, coaching, website critiques, product creation, sales letters, opt-in pages, and the list goes on and on.
So, my microphone needs to be easy to get to and easy to use. I have a boom arm fastened to my desk and my mic is mounted on it. When I need my mic to record, I simply hit the record button, swing it in front of me and start talking. If I’m doing a training call, I open the call, swing the mic in front of me and start talking. It’s always out of the way but still right in front of me.
I’m also on the computer for hours on end. Even when talking on the microphone, I’m also on the computer, so it has to be easy to use.
I have three large monitors connected to my computer. The monitor directly in front of me is 46 inches and the two monitors, one on each side of my main monitor are each 36 inches each.
This setup enables me to drag my windows from screen to screen, have data open on one screen to use while working on another screen, etc. If I’m waiting for an important email, I can keep my email open on one screen while using the other two to continue working on whatever project is at hand. I barely need to turn my head to look from one monitor to the other. Once again, it makes it very easy for me to work.
Let me clarify something here. I normally have my email shut down during most of the day because it’s just too distracting. I open it and check it once a day. But every now and then a situation comes up where I desperately need whatever is being sent by email. In those rare cases is when I might leave my email open on one screen and continue to work using the other two screens.
To the right of my desk, I have a set up for recording video. It has cameras and lighting already in place as well as four big 50-inch screens mounted behind where I sit or stand. I can run background scenes or video behind me as I’m making a recording or doing a training. People can see this setup when I do my monthly live stream trainings.
I also have a setup on the other side of the room where I can walk over, turn on a couple of computers and start recording almost instantly.
Why do I have an elaborate setup like this? I have it for marketing ergonomics. Some days I may only use my desk area, but on other days, I may use all three setups. When I need one of the areas, I can just walk over and start using it. I don’t have to set something up or deconstruct something and then reset it up before I can begin to work. Not only does the set up and tear down take up time; it’s also mentally draining. By the time you set it up, you may have forgotten some of the points you wanted to make in a training or coaching session. If you run into difficulties setting it, you may become frustrated and not even want to do the recording. You may put it off until you hope you will be in a better frame of mine. This in turn throws the rest of your day off.
I realized long ago that you don’t work hard in order to get more accomplish…you work smarter in order to get more accomplished.
So, in order to get more accomplished, I had to make it easier to do each task. I have my cameras and lighting all set up. When I want to make a video, I just walk over, start the camera and
computer, flip the switch for the lighting, and I’m ready to record. I don’t even need to plug in the microphone. It’s already on the boom arm and all I need to do is swing it in place. The entire process from the time I decide to make the recording until the time I actually start recording is about three minutes.
I’ve made my work processes easier and faster to do. In other words, I’ve set myself up for success. I have tricked myself into getting more work done in a shorter period of time by preparing and setting things up ahead of time.
The benefits of some of the things I do are easy to see. Things like multiple monitors and pre-setup recording areas are very visible but they can also be expensive. But there are small, inexpensive, marketing ergonomic things you can do that have a big effect on your productivity such as having the correct keyboard to fit your desk and work style. Even having the correct mouse can make a big difference.
I think the Apple mouse is amazing. It’s just so fast and easy to use. It allows me to move my cursor with very little movement on my part. This is not because I’m too lazy to move my wrist— it’s because it enables me to move it fast and safely.
I have macros and bookmarks on my computer so I can accomplish tasks faster and get more done in a set amount of time. I can set up a bookmark that enables me to open an entire folder that gets me to a series of pages that I open on a regular basis.
You may think, “But that only saves a couple of seconds, and yes, that’s true if you only open that folder once a day. But if it’s a folder or page that you access multiple times throughout the day, this makes sense. During the course of a day, I probably save up to 30 minutes. Now multiply those 30 minutes per day over a week, month, or even year and you see some substantial time savings from this one little bookmark.
Halfway through this article, I think I should call it office ergonomics. I take this seriously because it makes my life so much easier.
I’m just like you—my life, my work, and my office are not static. Things get moved around, things get changed, and my office regresses to a mess. When that happens, I stop, take a breath, and get things setup and back into order.
We’re still fairly early in the new year— think about what you need to do in order to sett yourself up for success.
Start small, and when you start to realize the benefits, you will automatically step up the process. Maybe it’s something like buying a better microphone or buying a boom arm so you can access your microphone easier. Maybe it’s investing in a new keyboard, a mouse, or a mouse pad is what you need. Maybe it’s something really simple like buying a cup to put your pens in so that you can easily grab one when you need to jot something down.
If you are the type of person that likes to write on paper, having a stack of paper could be a big help. For example, on the left-hand side of my desk, I actually have index cards of all shapes and sizes so I can write notes that I use to keep me on track and productive.
I have two different USB hubs that I can plug things into in order to make sure that I can plug in all the things I need plugged in like chargers, hard drives and other electronic devices. A good quality headset may be another thing you need.
If I can get more done by adopting a new strategy, a new technique, a new tool, a new piece of equipment, whatever it is, if it will help me get more done faster than I’m all in for it.
We all have exactly 1440 minutes in a day. We can waste it by doing stupid things like taking seven steps to do a task when only two steps are needed. We need to figure out how to eliminate the five unneeded steps in order to get more accomplished.
So, the best piece of advice that I can give you when it comes to office ergonomics is to get the things that you need to make your work life easier. You will get much more enjoyment out of your life and your work!