It’s January. For business owners, this month is for goal setting, reflecting on the previous year, and planning for the year ahead. What worked? What didn’t? How can you apply those lessons to your 2018 strategy? When you’re thinking about your goals this year, make sure you include digital marketing resolutions to support your overarching sales and business goals.
Don’t know where to start? Here are our top five 2018 digital marketing resolutions you’ll actually stick to.
1. Use a content calendar. Just do it.
Our number one tip for staying consistent with your digital and content marketing strategy is creating a content calendar. It’ll help you plan out your days, weeks, and months in advance, along with helping you see what’s coming up next — two great ways to help hold yourself accountable.
Most business owners have better things to do than worry about social media, content creation, and the like — and when things get overwhelming, marketing is one of the first things that can deteriorate. We’ve all been there. When you use a content calendar, though, you can sit down on one of your less-busy days (if those exist) and schedule all of your content for the entire month.
Your content calendar can include:
- Social media posts
- Relevant holidays and important dates
- Blog posts
- Infographics and other visual content pieces
- Email marketing dates
But before you can start scheduling, you’ll need a template. You can grab our free content calendar template here. This is the first step toward making sure you reach your digital marketing goals for 2018.
Actionable Goal: Download our content calendar template and make new tabs for each month of 2018.
2. Schedule your social posts ahead of time.
If you aren’t doing this right now, you need to be. It’ll help free up your time while staying consistent on your social media platforms. You can use a tool like Hootsuite to help you schedule your posts weeks (and even months) ahead of time.
When you schedule your social posting in your content calendar, all you’ll need to do is pull it up, get on Hootsuite, and get to scheduling! The Salesforce blog (https://www.salesforce.com/products/marketing-cloud/what-is-marketing-automation/) explains in detail why marketing automation is important – and this greatly applies to social.
To help you get started, check out this blog post about social media scheduling. It contains tips on what to post, when to post, and how to create your very own social media content formula.
Actionable Goal: Designate a day of the week or month to sit down and schedule your social media posts in your content calendar and then Hootsuite. Stay consistent by designating a specific number of posts you want to have scheduled for each week.
3. Boost your blogging efforts.
At Smarter Searches, we harp on this all the time — no matter what business you’re in, you need to be blogging! There are two huge benefits to blogging for your business:
- When you blog, you’re adding more content to your website. This means more content that Google can crawl. Aid your SEO efforts by making sure your blogs are informative and include keywords relevant to your business.
- Blogging also creates original content that you can share on social media, which helps send traffic back to your website from all of your social platforms. Awesome, right?
If you need help getting started with blogging, make sure you read our post about blogging for business.
Actionable Goal: Decide how many blog posts you want to write per month (we think two is a good place to start). Get them on your content calendar for specific dates so you’ll make sure to get them done. It also helps to add your topic to your content calendar so you know what you’ll be writing about.
4. Get serious about SEO.
2018 is the year to ramp up your SEO game. While SEO includes a bunch of high-level stuff that is better off left to the pros, there are several things you can do, yourself, to help bump you up a few notches. Here are a few basic tips:
- Make sure you’re using the right keywords in your website content and blog posts. Here’s a quick guide on how to use keywords and how to rank for them.
- Use meta descriptions if you don’t already.
- Use alt text on your website’s images so Google can see them.
- Make sure your website is mobile friendly — Google is switching to mobile-first website indexing in 2018. Here’s what you can do to make sure your website is optimized for mobile.
Actionable Goal: Carve out around 30 minutes a week to work on SEO basics for your website. Add in meta titles and descriptions, utilize alt text, perform keyword research to see what you need to be including in your content, and work on making your website mobile-friendly.
5. Start leveraging the power of email marketing.
Email marketing isn’t very sexy…but it can be really effective when it’s done well. It’s a great way to keep your brand top-of-mind for customers, and it often has a higher rate of ROI, conversions, and clicks than social media. Sending out a monthly newsletter to your contacts with the latest news, freshest blog content, special promotions, and more can drive clicks to your website. Ready to get started? Get our top six tips for effective email marketing. With easy tools like MailChimp and Constant Contact, you’ll be an email marketing whiz in no time.
Actionable Goal: Send out a monthly newsletter to your customers, including links that direct them to your website. Select a date to send out the newsletter and put it in your content calendar (of course!). If you don’t have one already, place a spot on your website for people to sign up.
New year. New you. New marketing goals.
When you’re outlining your personal and business goals for 2018, don’t forget about digital marketing. These 5 resolutions are small, easy-to-achieve steps in the right direction toward taking your marketing strategy to the next level.
Need assistance with any of these pieces? As always, we’re here to help. Good luck, and happy 2018!