This post was going to be about marketing trends and other things that developed in the industry over the past year. But let’s be honest, you’ve got Google and there’s a million of those articles floating around. So, instead I decided to share with you ways to improve your marketing this year.
The foundation for this post is based around all the marketing things I could have done better in my own business last year! Despite the fact that I have years and years of marketing experience, I don’t always practice what I preach. I get busy with client work and don’t focus on my own marketing efforts as much as I should. You know how it goes. Anyway, as I reflect back on 2016, months of not practicing what I preach is finally slapping me in the face and I’m reminded of the importance of these 5 things.
1.”Your vibe attracts your tribe”
Catchy right? I can’t take credit for it, I heard it some where along the way and it stuck with me. I did some amazing branding work this year…for other people’s businesses. My branding on the other hand, could use some work. I’m not just talking about my logo cause it’s fine, but if I’m being honest, it’s not me. My key messaging, my materials and everything in between needs an overhaul.
You see I’ve been lying to myself about what I am and what my business does. For years I’ve been “providing marketing services for small businesses.” ← This is not my vibe at all. My color palette…not my vibe either. You get where I’m going with this. The bottom line is your branding should reflect who you are and represent the “vibe” you want to your business to give out. Don’t lie to yourself and try to be something you’re not or what you think you should be. Let your brand reflect your personality and your tribe (aka your ideal customer) will follow.
2. Consistency is key
I’ve been terrible about staying consistent with my marketing this year, especially the later half of the year when I got REALLY busy. The time in between Facebook posts has grown longer. Monthly emails turned in to “every other month” emails and networking to gain leads fell off the calendar.
While I’ve been very fortunate to remain busy through referrals, I know this will not be the case forever. With that said I’ve got to get consistent this year and keep my name in front of people on a regular basis. The same goes for you. No matter how busy you are, it’s important to stay consistent with your marketing. See #3.
3. Know when to hire a professional
I’ve learned this year that I can’t do it all. Of course I CAN do my own social posts. Of course I CAN write my own email blasts. And I CAN update my website…but I’m not. It’s getting pushed to the back burner when client work takes priority and with that, it’s time for me outsource. When you get to the point in your business where your marketing is consistently being neglected even if you CAN do it yourself, if you’re not making time to do it, it’s time to hire someone.
4. Love what you do
When you love what you do, it will show through to your clients. When your clients see you love what you do AND you provide a great product or service, marketing gets a whole lot easier. This year I took on some projects that I wasn’t overly excited about. While they came out good and the client was happy, I wasn’t “loving” what I was doing. That’s no good.
On the other hand, I had several projects that I was TOTALLY excited about. The result was I got a lot more referrals from the projects I was excited about as opposed to the ones I should have said no to. Know when something isn’t a good fit for your business. Saying ‘no’ to something that isn’t a good fit for you or your business can actually help your marketing efforts!
5. Websites are made to be updated
I haven’t updated my site ALL year. Yikes. That is awful to admit in writing! Your website should be a living document that reflects where your business is at. It should reflect your current branding, including your key messaging. It should speak to your client’s pain point and clearly describe how you can help them. A website is not meant to be created and never touched again. Update, update, update!
So now that I’ve aired my dirty marketing laundry I challenge you to take a look back at 2016 and decide on ways to improve your marketing for 2017. Ask yourself, what went well? What was a waste of time or money? What do I need to do better this year? Pick one or two things to focus on. Don’t go crazy and try to revamp everything over night. Unless you have a team of people behind you, that will be difficult to do. When you’re ready, contact me to schedule a strategy session and I will help you discover ways to improve your marketing in 2017!
Happy New Year!