Nine Marketing Resolutions for the New Year


New Years Resolutions

New Year’s resolutions are the new Santa Claus: they’re a nice idea, fun to contemplate, but we all know they don’t really exist. By day seven of the new year, resolutions have fallen by the wayside. So, why write an article about New Year’s resolutions for your marketing?

Because “resolution” isn’t just something you make in December (and break in January); it also means courage, dauntlessness, steadfastness and staying power—among other qualities many professionals would like to ascribe to their marketing and business development. With those meanings in mind, here are some marketing “resolutions” to stick to in 2023.

1. Resolve to “calendarize”

Using a calendar that shows you the year in one view, block off all significant events, including conferences you attend or exhibit at, speaking engagements, scheduled email blasts and webinars. Then, mark when you need to start pre-event marketing, such as announcements on your website and/or social media and dinner invitations. Display this calendar someplace where you will regularly see it so that important events and related marketing stay top-of-mind. That way, you’ll be thinking ahead and maximizing these opportunities.

2. Resolve to think in terms of both marketing and personal selling

Some professionals think only in terms of marketing tools such as a website, social media and public relations. Others think only in terms of “personal selling” opportunities such as networking events and lunches. Ideally, you’ll have a plan for both, and these plans will align with and support each other. When you “calendarize” your marketing, go ahead and calendarize weekly phone calls, networking events and other aspects of “personal selling” with it.

3. Resolve to prioritize and focus

Marketing today can be overwhelming because of the number of possible tactics. You can’t do them all effectively, so you have to make choices about what is realistic for you and your firm. It’s more impactful (not to mention more satisfying) to commit to and execute a couple tactics than to try to cover too much ground.

4. Resolve to track where your leads and new business comes from

If a firm is tracking anything, it is most often tracking where new business comes from. But firms should also be tracking the source of leads. A lead is the opportunity your marketing generates leading to a conversation about how your expertise can benefit the prospective client. The only way to know how well your marketing is working (and what aspects are working) is by tracking what generates leads. That can be tricky, as a lead may result from many inputs, over time (e.g., the prospect heard you speak, read an article you wrote, follows you on LinkedIn, etc.). Still, as much as possible, you want to capture the source of your leads and regularly analyze the aggregate: this data will guide your marketing investments.

You also want to capture which leads convert to new business. This will not only tell you where the most fruitful leads are coming from, but also point to critical issues you need to address. For example, if you’re getting leads, but not converting many of them, it could point to a need for more business-development training. It could also indicate the need to reevaluate your communication points: might you be driving the wrong kind of prospect to your firm?

5. Resolve to keep your database/contact list clean and up-to-date

Despite claims to the contrary, social media has not made databases obsolete. Though LinkedIn, Facebook, and other networks are powerful platforms for getting out your message, there are almost certainly prospects, current and former clients, and referral sources who either are not on social media or have not yet connected with you there. If you want to cover all your bases, you have to make use of both social media and traditional tools.

6. Resolve to repackage, not reinvent

Make content marketing work for you by repackaging and leveraging your material. Content marketing means attracting and engaging your target market through thought-provoking material that informs and intrigues. You already have a plethora of content around you that can be repackaged for marketing purposes: material from briefs that can germinate articles; speeches that can be converted into articles; even PowerPoint presentations that can be fleshed out, perhaps narrated, and posted online. There’s no need to reinvent the wheel to get engaging content out there.

7. Resolve to renew

The pace of what makes for effective marketing has continued to accelerate. The “shelf-life” of marketing material – how long before material or tactics become dated – continues to shrink. This is the time to take a fresh look at not only your hardcopy and online “look,” but also tactics. For example, effective search engine optimization today is miles away from what it was a couple of years ago. Take the first steps toward renewal.

8. Resolve to execute

There is no magic marketing bullet –no single, best way to market. If you are looking for the most effective way to market, decide on the tactics you are going to focus on, e.g., your website, LinkedIn and speaking, and determine the most effective way to execute them. What produces results is a mix of tactics in the right balance, and that can only be determined by trial and effort, tracking, and modifying as you proceed.

9. Resolve to be consistent

Success in marketing comes from consistency. Carve out a realistic amount of uninterrupted time on a regular basis. There will always be other things calling out to be done first, but consistently devoting time to your marketing means growing your business.

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