While considering business goals for 2016, the popular quote “A Goal without a Plan is just a Wish” struck a chord, and prompted me to define some tangible marketing and sales goals. My business resolution for the year is to get in front of at least one potential new client each week. Past experience tells me that this should yield 12 new clients a year. It does beg the question, from where shall I get the new leads? I have a plan for that as well.
- A business networking group, such as BNI, is a terrific referral source for small business owners. Since I already belong to the North Shore Networker’s in Topsfield, I plan to make better use of my 60-second commercials and one on one opportunities to get to know, like, and trust my fellow members. The group is essentially my “sales force” and it is my job to educate them about my products and services so that they might point referrals my way.
- In 2012, I vowed to publish a new blog post each week. I have been pretty diligent about that and the effort has helped to grow my business and solidify my reputation as an authority in my field. While I typically cross-promoted my blog posts using LinkedIn updates, I have found that using the site’s publishing tool is more effective. The difference between posting an update and publishing on LinkedIn essentially relates to the originality of the content, and whether or not the article is worthy of being posted in its entirety. In contrast, the simple sharing of a link or a thought would be an appropriate “update”. I will continue to put effort into composing original pieces to publish both on LinkedIn and on my weblog.
- Contrary to popular belief, email marketing is not dead. My clients have great success with well-planned email marketing campaigns. In fact, a Danvers Day Spa client of mine generated $10,000 in sales between Black Friday and Cyber Monday with a campaign that was primarily email-driven. I plan to create a series of email blasts targeting both existing customers, former clients, and those who previously inquired about my services. I will likely focus on the must-do’s in online marketing today such as the benefits of a CMS platform like WordPress and the importance of mobile responsiveness.
- I often preach that it is not good enough to simply be present on a social media platform. One must actively engage their followers in a valuable conversation in order to reap results. I plan to add Twitter to my to-do list this year. Twitter is like the little black dress in my social media closet! The appetizer bits of information that we share do not take nearly the effort of a blog post and Twitter itself is more user-friendly than ever. I plan to use it to share the “Do’s and Don’ts” in the marketing world, similar to the way that Glamour magazine utilizes this method, which masquerades as an opportunity to share tips of the trade.
With a plan in place, it’s time to put it in play!