Build out your editorial calendar, review past results, reaffirm business and channel goals, and double-check your tool sets.
It's now that time of year where everyone heads back to the gym and executes their business plans for 2012. Remember all of that budgeting that you did last year? As it relates to the business side, let's look at what you can do to bolster your digital marketing efforts.
One of the most vital elements is to choose the correct messaging approach to your target market. Those target audiences or communities are now used by more than 67 percent of the global population. Social media has brought us better opportunities to reach out to your audience. So we can learn more about our audience and apply the right messaging. However, it can become a problem if you don't become more resourceful with your time.
Learn to distinguish if your target audience is posters or seekers. The poster simply posts articles, resources, tips, etc. The seekers are seeking content. This distinction is important to help you understand users' motivations and needs.
Build Out Your Editorial Calendar
This is one of the single best tools you can use to plan ahead. Imagine having a calendar and you pass this around to all staff members. What you want to do is to plan out what content goes with an upcoming article, newsletter, email, etc.
For instance, let's say you and your team have decided to resurrect your blog and dedicated to keeping it up. This editorial calendar allows your team to plan all events related to the blog and the type of articles needed to support this messaging. Then articles are assigned to each team member with a deadline. This allows you to stay up on it. By staying up on your blog consistently, you will demonstrate to your visitors that you can be trusted. They will then reciprocate by participating more on your blog, which leads to more conversions and other opportunities.
Review Past Results
Now is also a chance to review past analytics and put together an executive summary that will outline the highlighted features of the past year. This benchmarking will enable you to do comparisons each month. Here are some things to look out for:
By doing this you'll be much better at understanding new differences in changes as they come along.
Reaffirm Business and Channel Goals
Take the time to review your business and channel goals. Or you may need to start from scratch and get one written. As you study these goals, map how they impact your team's goals for 2012. This will also help you in writing your 2012 editorial calendar. You can then spread out your goals on a monthly basis.
Double-Check Your Tool Sets
I like this one because I sometimes get too attached around one tool and don't take the time to look at newer tools coming out. The new tools can easily save you time and money by providing a higher quality product for about the same cost.
So dust off your toolset and see if there are any updates or new releases that need to be installed. You never know, sometimes that is all it takes. Then do a bit of research and identify a few sets of new tools that would be good replacements. A good way to do this is to attend a tradeshow. There are usually many tool vendors that will be glad to offer you a tour and a t-shirt.
This is by no means an exhaustive list, but it will get you into the right mindset as you prepare yourself for your 2012 digital marketing plan.
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Ron was president/CEO of Symetri Internet Marketing, which provides strategic SEM consulting and training. Ron was actively involved in the SEM community and spoke and trained at conferences and seminars. Ron also served on the Board of Directors for SEMPO and was one of the authors for the SEMPO Institute Fundamentals and Advanced courses.
Ron also published a book called Keyword Intelligence: Keyword Research for Search Social and Beyond. This book outlines various methods and tips for conducting keyword research but more importantly outlines many ways to use keyword research for social media, site design, content development and marketing, and even traditional marketing and branding.
Ron passed away on June 30, 2012.
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