As we begin the new year, it’s time for marketers to set their goals for 2018 and beyond. Maybe they’re about things that you missed the mark on last year, processes you can streamline, or new technologies you want to try. Whatever your resolutions may be this year, take a look at our suggestions below and make smarter marketing goals for 2018.
1. Develop an Annual Marketing Plan
Every hour you spend building a marketing plan in January is an hour you’ll save for yourself come July. Start by writing down all of the key dates that affect your business. Include planned sales, events, conferences, enrollment periods, national holidays and so on. Once you have all of these dates on the calendar, you can start allocating resources toward each. This keeps you efficient and accountable throughout the year.
2. Revisit Your Target Audience to Create Customer Journeys
A lot can happen in a year. As you revisit your target audience(s) and study the emerging trends in your industry, go a bit further in 2018 by creating customer journeys. These flow charts map out every interaction your audience has with your brand and illustrate how those interactions improve their experience and your brand’s authority.
3. Keep Up Your Blog
We get it: most people don’t like to blog. Luckily, we’ve put together a complete guide to blogging for even the busiest marketers. For starters, look to your marketing plan to ensure every piece of content you publish is timely and relevant to your audience’s needs. Create an editorial calendar, complete with deadlines and publishing windows to hold your team accountable for the blog. And if you just can’t find the time to blog or your blog isn’t moving the needle, let our content team tell your story.
4. Try New Things
Habits are easy to make and hard to break. In 2018, make an effort to reach your audiences in new ways. Whether you’re just getting into social media, or are ready to embrace the convenience and consistency of marketing automation–make this the year you develop the strategy that attracts your audience and keeps them engaged in the long run.
5. Set Smart Goals and Act On Your Performance
As a marketer, you know that setting SMART goals (goals that are Specific, Measurable, Action-oriented, Realistic, and Time-sensitive) is the best way to measure your success and performance. But it’s easy to let the nuance of reporting and reviewing analytics slip through the cracks. Keep on track in 2018 by setting aside time each month to review your key analytics and implement new search engine strategies, keyword focuses and more.
6. Build and Leverage Stronger Partnerships
You can’t always do it all yourself. In choosing an agency partner, be sure to look at the agency’s expertise as well as how well they fit with your organization’s workflow and values. The range of services and expertise at full-service agencies, like Paradigm, often makes them a great complement to your marketing team.
Despite our best intentions, we’re all familiar with that mid-March feeling of, “how did this happen?” Go into 2018 with a plan and make the time necessary to execute. And if you happen to fall short along the way, give us a call. We’ll talk through it and deliver a strategy that gets you back on track and better than ever.