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Nevilson Christian
Nevilson Christian 23 April 2024

10 Daily Habits That Set High-Performing Designers & Marketers Apart

Discover the 10 daily habits that elevate designers & marketers to high-performance levels. Transform your routine for success today.

Spend an hour on a social media platform - LinkedIn, X, Instagram, or others - and you’ll find, at least:

  • 5 influencers telling you to hustle hard.

  • 10 marketers giving away their success secrets for a like and a comment.

  • 15 designers telling you how to use AI to do your job while your creativity sits and rusts. 

For marketers and designers, the allure of these shortcuts and growth hacks is strong. 

You want to stand out.
You want to do something disruptive.
You want to transition from ‘average’ to ‘high-performing’

But here’s some food for thought: 

This means you don’t need tips and tricks to perform better. You can boost your performance by developing deliberate habits. Habits that set high-performing marketers and designers apart from the rest?

What are these habits?
Let’s find out. 

How can I tell you the habits that set high-performing designers and marketers? 

Not to brag, but I run a branding agency, a design agency, and work as a CMO. If I weren’t a high-performing marketer and designer, all that wouldn’t have been possible. So my personal experience is the biggest source of my insights. 

But that’s not all. I have also spoken to other high performers in the industry. And of course, there are studies around habits and performance. 

I’m just breaking all that information into actionable insights for you right here. 

So dive in and unlock the top 10 habits that high-performing marketers and designers swear by.

1. Morning rituals

You know your morning sets the tone for the entire day. So how do you make sure your morning is positive and productive? Do something that gets your brain's gears turning. 

For me, that's grabbing a cup of coffee and jotting down my priorities for the day. 

For you, it could be a few minutes of meditation. A brisk walk. A session at the gym. Or even a nourishing breakfast. 

It just has to be something that helps centre your mind and energise your body. 

2. Healthy self-care

Design and marketing are both deadline-focused jobs. 

And data says it is common for 85% of media and marketing professionals to experience work stress. Not once in a while, but frequently. 

So to ensure high performance at work, you need to take care of yourself. Now prioritising self-care can take different forms for different people. Some exercise, others eat healthy, and some just simply take breaks when needed. 

No matter what you do, just ensure that you are taking out time for your health, every single day.  

3. Regular goal setting

Setting goals makes you 10x likely to succeed. But 83% of people don't do that. High-performing marketers and designers are not among those 83%. 

Clear and achievable goals give you direction and purpose. However, broad goals often cause confusion instead of clarity. 

So here's what you can do: Break down big objectives into smaller, everyday goals.

This: 

  • Helps you track your progress every day.

  • Keeps you motivated as at the end of the day you go to bed having achieved something.

  • Doesn't overwhelm you.

4. Continuous learning

Design and marketing have changed a lot in the past couple of decades

Standing still isn't a choice when the world is racing ahead. Marketing and design technologies are improving by the minute. 

So unless you are okay with letting a new technology (read: AI!) become your boss' favourite, you need to keep upskilling yourself.

Stay on the lookout for chances to sharpen our skills and evolve. 

  • Take workshops. 

  • Read case studies. 

  • Tinker with fresh tools. 

  • Analyse data and gather insights.

  • Devour blogs from the industry’s thought leaders. 

Make sure you go to bed having learned something every single day.  

5. Networking

No matter what field you are in, relationships within your industry open doors. For marketers and designers, it is all the more important. 

After all, your network is how you'll find industry insights and new opportunities. 

Of course, you can't spend all your day talking and meeting people. 

But what you can do daily is engage with at least one industry professional online. Social media can make it possible. With 1 connection a day, you can soon have a thriving industry network. That's the network you can lean on to learn and earn when needed.

6. Data-driven decision making 

Gut instincts are invaluable.

And, of course, design and marketing are creative pursuits that have more to do with the heart than the brain. 

But data provides concrete insights into what works and what doesn't. 

And successful marketers and designers always leverage stats to drive strategies. So when you sit down to craft a campaign for a client, don't forget to analyse metrics. 

What does the audience like?
What channels yield the highest ROI?
What colours boost engagement and recall? 

Take time to answer these questions with data before unleashing your creativity. 

7. Competitor analysis

Don't let what others do dictate your actions. 

That's advice from the past. Today, we live in a hyper-connected world. What your competitors are doing (or not doing) has a direct impact on you. 

So make sure you spend time understanding the market and the competitors' actions. Study their strategies and identify gaps. Then you can refine your own approach and stay ahead of the curve. 

Important: Competitor analysis ≠ stalking. Don't let competitor analysis consume you. 

8. Creating content

You can't build anything great without getting your hands dirty. I understand how busy you are in strategizing, planning and monitoring. But don't forget to create something every day. 

Heading a design campaign?
Sit with the team and create a graphic yourself. 

Working on a marketing campaign?
Go ahead and write a jingle yourself. 

This keeps you grounded and connected to your work. 

You can also brainstorm and create content that helps build your personal brand. It aids networking as well.

9. Feedback loops

Feedback is a gift that helps you grow and improve. Most high-performing marketers and designers give feedback to their teams daily. But they also shy away from taking some constructive criticism themselves. 

Whether it's from colleagues, clients, or your audience, actively seek feedback. This allows you to refine your skills and deliver better results.  

10. Accountability

Being a high-performing marketer or designer doesn't mean you won't ever fail. Goof-ups happen. The best-designed graphics get rejected by clients. The most carefully thought-out marketing plans fail.

What's important is to not feel afraid of taking accountability. 

At SeekThem, we make sure we have set clear responsibilities with corresponding accountability. Everyone - including me - is accountable for their responsibilities. We have project management tools to track responsibility and authority. And we are not afraid to fail fast and bounce back faster. That's how we empower ourselves to achieve greatness. 

Before you go...  

“It takes 21 days to form a habit.”

That is an urban myth. 

On average it takes most people 66 days to build a habit. 

So don't give up on these habits that set high-performing marketers and designers apart too soon. Stay persistent and let the right habits lead you where shortcuts can't. 

Have some habits that help you perform better as a marketer or designer? 

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