New Year’s resolutions. Love ‘em, hate ‘em, you can’t hardly live without them. Even if you don’t write them down or announce them to the world, they’re there. We can’t help ourselves. There’s something about the start of a new year that makes us all decide it’s time to be better, smarter, richer, thinner or happier.
I can’t help you with the thinner or happier part, but here are 5 New Year’s resolutions that could make you a better, smarter, richer marketer.
1. I will listen to what my customers have to say.
The one great thing about social media is that it gives us instant feedback from customers. It’s not always what we want to hear, but it’s all valuable information. This year, make a vow to pay attention to what others are saying about you. Scan Twitter and Google for comments about your company and reply to folks where appropriate. Sure, you’ll find some whiners in the bunch, but if more people complain about slow shipping than praise your products, you need to look into it.
2. I will reward customer loyalty.
If you run a small business, you can’t compete with Amazon or Wal-mart in volume or price. What you can do is keep the customers you have by rewarding them for their loyalty. For brick and mortar businesses, use a check-in service to give discounts to returning customers. Online? Send out a bonus discount code to your regular shoppers. Or better yet, pop a free item into their next order. Doesn’t matter what it is, a sticker, candy, shoelaces — they’ll appreciate it.
3. I will allow my personality to show through.
It’s all well and good to represent your company online, but people want to do business with people, not corporations. Use social media accounts to converse, not just inform. Where appropriate, mention your favorite TV show, sports team win, or what you had for lunch. And don’t be afraid to let your sense of humor show through.
4. I will admit my mistakes without going overboard.
Part of showing your human side, is opening yourself up to criticism when you make a misstep. Chances are, it won’t even be your mistake. Maybe the CEO of your company let loose on Twitter with some unkind words. Perhaps a marketing stunt backfired? What ever happened, it happened. Use social media to apologize, make amends where you can them move on. It’ll blow over. I promise.
5. I will try something new.
This is both the simplest and the hardest resolution to keep. There are so many new ideas and options, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. What happens then? You fall back on the same routine because it’s comfortable and familiar.
So pick one idea and give it a shot. Maybe it’s designing a mobile app for your brand. Or creating a weekly YouTube video that highlights what you do. Maybe it’s starting a Google+ page or using Hangout to create a focus group.
Your idea might fail. It might be too expensive or too difficult to manage. Or it could be a whole new source of revenue, an enlightening experience or the inspiration you need to take your company to the next level. You won’t know until you try.
What’s on your marketing To Do list for the new year? We’d love to hear about it.