Ah, New Year Resolutions. Did you have fun ringing in the New Year? My husband, the cats and Shadow the German shepherd had our annual antipasto feast, with plenty of kisses, champagne and treats at midnight. Now that the confetti has settled and it is time to get back to work, it’s time that you and I, as content marketing managers and marketing executives, make some New Year’s Resolutions together. Ready?
A Content Marketing Manager’s New Year’s Resolutions
- I resolve that this year, I will focus on quality content rather than quantity. If I only get one blog post up per week but it’s so fantastic that it’s shared by a zillion people and breaks the internet, and then I’ve done my job.
- I resolve that this year, I will find the benefits in my products – and get excited about them. A product is boring only when you can’t see the benefits in it. I’ve written about light bulbs, plastic pails, and pencils – yes, pencils – and made them interesting and fun. You can make dirt fun if you really think about it. Vow with me that your B2B content marketing efforts will sparkle this year.
- I resolve not to chase the latest Google updates with my SEO efforts. Ah, Google. Love them or hate them, we’ve all fallen victim to the “oh my gosh, what’s the next algorithm update going to do to my SEO rankings?” syndrome. Instead of worrying that Google’s next sinister tweak is going to tank your site ranks, focus on quality (see #1, above). You really can’t go wrong with quality.
- I resolve that this year, instead of trying to do all my content marketing myself, I’m going to call on professionals for help. If I need graphic design, I will call upon the services of a professional graphic designer. If I need content marketing writing, I hire a professional marketing writer. No one does everything well. Really. Trust me on this one. Focus on what you can actually do well with your content marketing efforts, and outsource aspects that could benefit from an expert’s touch. This step can really pay off.
- I resolve that this year, I will schedule regular updates for my content marketing channels. Whether it’s blogs, podcasting, social media, videos or myriad other content marketing avenues, don’t start now going great guns and stop when things get busy. That puts into motion the dreaded feast or famine cycle, and you’ll end up neglecting your content marketing in order to work on your business projects. Then, when projects are done, you’ll suddenly be going great guns on your marketing again, your pipeline will be full, and the cycle repeats. It’s a surefire way of screwing up your business. Set aside one day or one hour a day to focus on marketing for your business alone. Consistent, steady efforts pay off.
- I resolve to pay attention to my website analytics. Okay, so you set up Google analytics on your website. Good for you. Now look at them – regularly. One company I work with as me check their website stats each week, another each quarter. Find out what works for your firm and then stick to a schedule. Yes, I’m a big believer in schedules, but that’s because they truly work! Whether you look at your site stats weekly, monthly or quarterly, find and stick to a schedule of analyzing your site statistics.
- I resolve to learn something new this year about B2B content marketing or internet marketing. Every profession needs refresher courses, a way to update their skills. While attending a conference or seminar may be out of your reach, there are plenty of free seminars, podcasts (my own on Blog Talk Radio, for example), online courses and more to help you update your skills. Last year, I took two courses: book marketing basics and list building basics. Both have paid off incredibly for my business and I feel confident to handle both tasks in the upcoming year. My investment? $49 in each course. It was well worth it. Even if you take just one online course, make a resolution that this year, you will update your marketing skills.
- I resolve to get out from behind my computer and actually interact with people. Oh, that’s a big challenge for someone like me who lives in a rural area, works online for nine hours a day, and has to drive over an hour to attend the next AMA or DMA meeting. But it’s necessary. While we can forge incredible professional relationships online, truly long-lasting relationships are made in person. This year, I plan to attend meetings of the Farmville Area Women’s Business Leaders networking group, and to look into a conference or seminar to attend in the New York City, Richmond or Washington DC areas. What about you?
- I resolve to be generous in all my business dealings. Whether it’s referring someone who I cannot serve to another company or sharing a link to a fellow marketing writer’s work, I resolve to generously share and give credit where credit is due. You can do this too by sharing links to content, referring freelance marketing writers or services to colleagues, or just saying “thank you” more often.
- I resolve not to sweat the small stuff. Many times, content marketing managers and marketing managers have to sweat the small stuff. A typo can ruin a marketing brochure. A slightly off-tint to a color ad campaign can ruin a product positioning. But in the long run, the small stuff won’t make or break our B2B content marketing efforts. It’s the daily tasks, like scheduling time for content marketing, checking your site stats, saying thank you to a colleague, hiring a professional and focusing on today’s task that in the long run will pay off. Don’t sweat the small stuff, but laugh it off and move on.
What are your resolutions as a marketing manager for this year? Let’s make 2015 happy, healthy and profitable for all. Together, we can do it!