5 Digital New Year’s Resolutions to Make 2017 Your Best Year Ever
by Janna Ramer
The New Year is here, which means that it’s time to set new goals in order to take your business to the next level. If you’re not quite sure where to start, below are five digital marketing New Year’s resolutions that will position your business to experience its best year ever in 2017.
1. Keep the “human element” first place.
One of the most encouraging trends to emerge in the business world lately has been a return to more “human-centric” practices. A good example of this is Discover Card staffing real, live human beings for all U.S.-based customer service calls.
For your business, this same concept of keeping the “human element” first place should be the linchpin of your digital marketing strategy. Your content marketing efforts should focus on addressing the needs, wants and questions of your target audience. Every process you create should offer an amicable balance between wise automation and the all-important human touch. In every business decision you make, the thought of how your actions will affect the human beings on the other end should be your guide.
2. Make data-driven decisions.
This may seem to be contradictory to the first resolution, but actually they work in tandem. Your data tells the ultimate story in terms of what your target audience responds to, as well as what they don’t. It makes no sense to continue trying to force a strategy to work when your analytics data tells you it’s not producing.
Adapting and adjusting your marketing strategy to conform to what your data is suggesting is the best way to go. Sometimes the biggest obstacle to progress is our own confirmation bias, so be especially mindful to let your data determine your approach in light of what’s working, as well as what’s not.
3. Optimize your web presence for mobile devices.
Smartphones, tablets, phablets, e-readers, and other handheld devices are increasingly becoming the norm in terms of how people access the Internet. If your website isn’t optimized for mobile devices, you’re potentially leaving a lot of money on the table, as a poor mobile user experience can cause high abandonment rates.
Check the responsiveness of your website by using Google’s convenient Mobile-Friendly Test tool. Be sure that every digital path to purchase accommodates mobile users, and consider using geo-location and mobile advertising to further your brand’s reach in the mobile arena as well.
4. Pursue authentic engagement on social media.
Tons of brands are using (or perhaps abusing) social media to blast out meme-drenched soundbites that come across as contrived or even desperate (check out the @BrandsSayingBae Twitter account for examples), but this type of communication seldom results in genuine social engagement.
Resolve to use your social media accounts to foster authentic interaction by doing what most people expect a brand to do – solve a problem, or be there to answer questions when needed. Remain laser-focused on meeting the needs of your target audience instead of just trying to entertain them with tweets, posts, and status updates that are based on fleeting trends.
5. Refine your processes.
Having the most sophisticated marketing tools in the world won’t help you at all if your overall business processes are disjointed. Whether it’s content marketing, online advertising, researching your target audience, developing your website, or perfecting the different stages of your sales funnel, take the time to analyze and evaluate every nuance of your processes, so you can plug any leaks and further improve the effectiveness of your efforts.
Whether 2016 was a banner year or one that you’d rather forget, the important thing is to learn from what happened and continue making steps to get better. Keep the above resolutions in mind, so that the next 12 months will be marked by significant progress and outstanding performance.