With 2014 approaching quickly, the last few weeks of the year are the perfect time to step back and take stock of your marketing campaigns. If you’re looking for a way to improve your marketing skills, here are some ideas to get you started.
#1. Stay Prolific
While quality is every bit as important as quantity, it’s important to create new posts and pages on a regular basis. Challenge yourself in the new year to post new content regularly: two new pages per week is not at all out of the question. Google will take note of how often you post new content, and adjust your site’s rankings accordingly.
#2. Create a Forum
In this world of social media and blogging, it’s sometimes easy to forget about forums. They can be a great way to help create a community around your brand, where you can encourage customers to interact with each other and with you in a more unstructured, informal way. A great example of forums done right is CJ Pony Parts. This Mustang parts supplier has built a great forum where customers can ask technical questions, provide feedback, and interact with other customers.
#3. Get Creative With Social Media
Like it or not, social media is here to stay and it will remain an invaluable part of the marketer’s tool set until the Next Big Thing comes along. As you have probably noticed, most businesses out there have made use of social media sites like Facebook and Twitter but they barely scratch the surface of what they’re capable of.
The key here is to create content that’s shareable. Failing to engage your customers in a memorable and meaningful way is going to cost you in the long run. Facebook has its own ranking algorithm, and it favors brands that have more comments and Likes. What you need to ask yourself is whether you’d follow your brand if you were a customer. If the answer is “no,” it means you have some work to do.
#4. Optimize Your Content for Mobile
We’re living in a mobile-first world, where nearly 20% of all global Internet traffic originates from a mobile device such as a smartphone or a tablet. As a result, one of your priorities in the new year needs to be the optimization of your sites.
By now, most of us are familiar with the common frustrations of mobile browsing: sites that load slowly or aren’t properly formatted for a particular screen size are going to drive customers away. If you’re focused solely on the desktop experience, you’re leaving an increasing percentage of your user base behind.
It’s important to create distinct versions of your websites for desktop and mobile use. For mobile devices, focus on stripping out images and other elements that may impede the site’s ability to load quickly.
#5. Create Video Content
Creating quality video content can be a huge boon to your brand. Customers appreciate seeing their favorite brands in action, whether it’s a look at how it’s made or a chance to see it in use around the world.
YouTube has become a favorite destination for Internet users who want to see unique content, which means if your brand has been ignoring it, you’re overlooking a great resource for posting shareable content.
Whether you create a motion graphic to spread the word about statistics that matter to your customers or you just want to tell the story of your brand, resolve in 2014 to create more unique video content.
#6. Set Goals
This last one is particularly important. It’s not enough to just come up with resolutions: you should also set specific, measurable goals for yourself to track your progress. If your focus is on creating shareable content, come up with a target number of shares. If you want to bolster visits to your website, target a specific number of visits or conversions.
Of course, getting help along the way is important as well. You’ll want to start tracking your sites’ analytics on a regular basis: ideally, every couple of days. Analytics can offer up a comprehensive look at what’s working on your site and what isn’t. Once you know how your visitors are interacting with your content, you can make changes to improve their experience.
Images: ”Decisions direction signs with office building in background / Shutterstock.com“
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