As the year’s end approaches, we like to reflect back, focusing on successes and noting those pesky “opportunities” for doing better in the new year. While there’s not always enduring discipline around personal resolutions, from a business perspective we engage in intentional reflection. Similar to applying marketing intelligence to inform future marketing efforts, intentional reflection uses the wisdom gained from honest assessment of past activities to make purposeful changes. It isn’t easy to slow down and assess while running a business, but we encourage you to make time for some intentional reflection before turning the calendar to the new year.
Looking back at our most popular posts, several themes emerge. While assessing your progress this year, we invite you to revisit these topics.
- Take control of your marketing
- Cater to your customers
- Keep learning
Take control of your marketing
As a new business, we’re often a one-person show, personally handling everything from business development to sales, customer service and marketing. But to grow success and revenues to the next level, we need to move out of launch mode. We hire bookkeepers, office managers and sales reps. We invest in software and develop processes to enable us to ascend to a more strategic role, helping our businesses to expand and flourish.
So, is your marketing still in launch mode? Are you winging it, tweeting impulsively and erratically, struggling to come up with ideas for email newsletters, feeling guilty about the blog that hasn’t seen a new post in months? Do you suspect that the student intern doesn’t have the big picture, perhaps, or wonder whether your website actually reflects the services your customers want? It’s time to take control.
Cater to your customers
In your direct interactions with a prospect or a customer, you’re probably on your best behavior, providing a positive and memorable customer experience (and hopefully cultivating an ongoing customer relationship). Online, the same principles apply. Whether you’re connecting with current customers or future ones, their user experience should be efficient and productive, while also building trust in your company. Offer a credible presence to instill confidence in your visitors to encourage them to purchase.
Because subscribers must opt-in, email marketing involves communication with a group of warm leads. How can you show respect and raise the bar on your email marketing subscription process? Feed your audience exactly the content they want, at the cadence they choose by offering the ability to manage their email preferences. Respect your customers.
Not much stays still in our technology-rich age. While it’s easy to cave to information overload, staying tuned in will ensure you’re informed of new trends and technologies that can improve your marketing effectiveness. Assign yourself a scheduled time each week for learning, and resolve to keep the commitment.
While we’re all at the mercy of the changing search engine ranking algorithms, you can impact your website’s placement in the search results. Start with some basic tasks to boost your SEO and revisit the topic periodically to continue to drive results.
Ensure you’re measuring the effectiveness of your marketing. Use your website analytics to learn which content is resonating most and what sites are referring visitors. Allocate time to capitalize on your Twitter notifications, review your email marketing stats and study your LinkedIn analytics. Drill down within the metrics of your marketing channels to identify what’s working to inform your marketing spend.
Intentional reflection uses the wisdom gained from honest assessment
of past activities to make purposeful changes.
Before closing out this year, take some time for intentional reflection and paint the picture for your success in the new one.
We’re here if you need a helping hand.