Tip 1: Rest and reflect
Sure, getting back up to speed as quick as possible is key - but we can’t perform at 100% all the time.
Stress really can damage your life (your brand included). According to the Mental Health Foundation in the UK, 74% of adults say they’ve been so stressed at work that they’ve been unable to cope, in the past year. Figures for the US are similar, at 77%.
Don’t rush back into the content marketing machine, for your sake and the sake of your marketing. When we’re stressed, we can’t think straight. We fall into old patterns of behaviour and churn out the same stuff.
Reflect on your efforts from last year. See what worked and what didn’t. Plan some themes you want to tackle in the coming year. Then get stuck in.
Remember: Your customers are still away or slowly coming back to life too, so they won’t begrudge a little time off either.
Tip 2: Wish your customers well even after Christmas
Imagine we hadn’t seen each other since before the Christmas break. We come back to the office on 2nd January, we say hello quickly, and then just get back into work. Is that odd to you? Didn’t a significant holiday just happen that we should acknowledge?
Simply asking how the holidays have gone, or talking about what you’ve been doing, is a surefire conversation starter.
So why miss this opportunity with your customers?
Welcome them back following the New Year. Send them well wishes for their holiday period. Perhaps even entice customers you’re looking to reactivate with a special New Year offer.
But don’t just pretend we didn’t all take a well-earned, fun break. We’re only human.
Tip 3: Welcome what’s to come in the following year
A great way to ensure customers are engaged with your marketing efforts is to tease them with upcoming topics.
Whether this is on your blog, through an email campaign, or in a short video, welcome your customers to 2019 and let them know what they can expect from the coming year.
It keeps people interested and informed. And your audience will remember you’ve got some kick-ass content coming up that they must read.
Tip 4: Make a bid for media coverage
With everyone still resting (see tip no.1) the news cycle slows, too.
So do you have something that’s coming up worth shouting about? Something you can comment on to pique the interest of a bored journalist?
While there may be less people watching the wires, PR experts know January can also be a great time to come out with a bold statement or development to grab that media attention.
A quick press release could be all it takes.
Tip 5: To rebrand, or not to rebrand?
This point very much depends on your own business cycle and whether or not a rebrand is on the horizon. However, the New Year can be a great time to reinvent graphics, layouts or old content that needs an injection of energy.
Not only does it help you and your team stay fresh, but it helps customers see your brand is dynamic and changes for the betterment of your audience.
You don’t need to necessarily change everything for benefits. Even changing something as small as the right colour for your brand can increase interest in your efforts by 40%.
Tip 6: Trends in 2020
So your customers might know what you’re doing in 2020, but what about the industry overall?
Businesses don’t exist in a vacuum. Your landscape - filled with competitors, threats, and opportunities - changes all the time. Don’t shy away from that.
If there’s a particular industry development coming up that could cause problems, face up to it. If your industry is doing particularly well in another area, talk about it.
Whatever you do, start the conversation and show you’ve got your finger on the pulse.
Tip 7: Infographic from previous year
We all love statistics. They’re little bite-sized nuggets of news we can easily share.
So why not share your own cool stats and facts?
Obviously you don’t want to be too self-absorbed, but you can easily entertain and impress your audience with an infographic showing your performance last year - whether through sales figures, employee headcount, revenue, review scores or more.
One study showed 40% of readers respond better to graphics than text, and that infographics can increase web traffic by 12%.
Tip 8: Poll your readers
Remember the old saying: ‘If in doubt, ask.’
It’s going to be a complete waste of your time and energy writing content, sourcing images and putting together email campaigns if it’s stuff your customers don’t want.
If you are unsure what you need to focus on in your marketing, go to your customers and see what they say. There are countless free survey tools out there, allowing you to email your best critics and build a picture of where you should be heading.
Quick note: make sure your survey is mobile adapted. In 2017, over 30% of surveys were taken on a mobile device, though rates for completion are still better on the desktop.
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