Tuesday, January 3, 2012
Content Strategy and Content Marketing: 12 Ways to Start 2012 Right
We all make goals around this time of the year. The classic list—how do we make our new year more productive?
It’s only natural—beginnings feel so fresh.
However, for many of us, it’s hard to meet those goals. And, we are constantly adding new information to the blender of our imaginations. This causes many businesses to go off course, following strategies that months later look foolish.
So what are some tried and true things you can do to start 2012 off right?
1. Review your content marketing and content strategies. Look for holes. Talk to colleagues. Brainstorm. Set a meeting once a month to review again.
2. Imagine where you want to be a year from now. Real leaders invent the future. Where do you want to be? Set goals for the rest of the year that will get you to that point.
3. Look for new blood. Maybe your blog needs some guest posts. Or your content marketing agency is coming up with nothing innovative. Whatever, you do, look for things that spice up what you’re doing, not alter course.
4. Set aside once a week to read the experts. My daily influx of email and Twitter updates is overwhelming, but I set aside time every week to read those things that interest me. The rest I file into a folder for Read Later. You never know where the good ideas may come from and when you may need them.
5. Target one customer you really want to reach. Identify this person with a user persona or profile. Make sure something you’re doing in your content marketing mix will target that customer in 2012.
6. Pay attention to your analytics. Say goodbye to the days when you could pretend to ignore them. We’re moving toward a much more metric-driven industry. But…
7. Set the right indication measurements. It may be more than just interactions, followers and mentions. Every industry and company is different. Find a way to measure the things you REALLY need to know about how your customers are responding to you in cyberspace.
8. Take a beginner class again. Whatever it is that you do, you think you know the basics. You’re probably right. But this year, I took a refresher writing class and I learned so much. It opened my eyes to writing (something I do all day, every day) in a completely different way. And, even more importantly, it ignited my passion for writing again.
9. Schedule regular socialization time with your team. I don’t care if you schedule time everyTuesday at 4pm or once a month happy hours. Just make sure you change the scenery with the people you think with on a daily basis.
10. Try something crazy innovative once a quarter. We learn much more from our failures than our successes. Even more so, if we’re not OUT THERE, we’re not trying. Don’t be afraid of something outlandish; just don’t walk the fine line of offensive. You never know what you might learn and what new avenues might open up.
11. Pay attention to advances in design. Those affect content the way a bad economy affects presidential popularity. With mobile and content delivery platforms changing rapidly, you cannot afford to be clueless about the latest advances in design delivery.
12. Trust your instincts. This might not be a check off for your “What to Do in 2012” but it’s an important rule to remember. If something in you says it’s not right, listen to that instinct.
I’d love to hear if you have something you plan to focus on in 2012.
Happy New Year!