A New Year, A New Approach to Inbound Marketing
Everyone - and we mean everyone - has at least one dirty, little marketing secret.
Maybe you’re skimping on the quality and quantity of your visual content marketing. Perhaps you’re putting off that SEO review of your website that you know you desperately need. Or even worse, perhaps you’re not even using the right social media networks in the first place. Trust me, we’re all guilty of something.
Social media managers are no stranger to some of the worst faux pas brands and individuals commit on Twitter. Neither are content managers, web developers, or SEO experts. I’m sure you encounter horrible marketing on the daily, and see yourself committing some of these crimes, too.
Let’s join together, and make 2015 the year we swear to permanently kick our bad habits to the curb. To ensure you get the most mileage possible for your new habits, here are some inbound marketing resolutions the experts highly recommend:
SEO: I Will Optimize For Mobile Usability
Mobile-optimization and mobile usability are two separate concepts. If your website can be accessed from a smartphone or tablet, that may not be all that you need to delight your customers. Google’s own guidelines report that the following factors are major culprits when it comes to mobile usability:
- Responsive viewing areas
- Appropriate flow of content
- Fonts that scale
- Easy-to-click elements and links
- Visual design and motion
Websites that don’t perform well on mobile lead to annoyed prospective customers. Further, Google recently revealed that “mobile usability is now relevant for optimal search results.” Make the 5 usability factors listed above your SEO priorities for 2015. Bonus tip: Google webmaster tools allow you to test these factors for free!
Content: I Will Try Something Wildly Different
Each year, Content Marketing Institute invites a host of thought leaders to make predictions for the year to come. 2015’s list is well worth your time to review in depth, but there was one cross-prediction factor that really stood out to me. 2015 is the year to get a little weird.
Consider the recent collaboration between BitTorrent and Thom Yorke. Think about Lana Del Ray’s wildly successful promotion of her music using nothing but gifs on Tumblr. Or, the volumes of digital-savvy brands adding the production of print magazines to their content calendars. None of these are exactly low-hanging fruit, or even something that’s guaranteed to succeed.
In 2015, content marketers will have to fight to gain notice among exploding information density. The best way to really stand out isn’t going to be with the same old tactics. It’s going to be with something incredibly innovative.
Social Media: I’ll Think Outside the “Big Four”
Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+. Probably in that exact order. These four reigning social media networks have been the daily jam for social media managers for years. However, social media experts are by-and-large predicting that 2015 is going to be the year there is some major disruption to these platforms. LKR’s Laura Roeder believes that republishing posts is about to become crucial, and Kristi Hines predicts that paid advertising is going to be unavoidable.
Unfortunately, they’re probably right. Changes to Facebook’s and LinkedIn’s algorithms and the popularity of social media marketing have made it much harder to get noticed. This also occurs at the same time that consumers are demanding more and more personalized interactions. What’s the solution? I can tell you it’s definitely not publishing the same old posts to Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Google+ like you’ve always done.
Be like Taco Bell, and offer exclusive deals via SnapChat. Or Netflix, and rule Ello. Or American Eagle, who enticed Facebook likes via text messages to customers. This year, jump with both feet into new platforms. Consider cross-platform strategies. Finally embrace Slideshare. Whatever it is you devise, make sure it’s a deviation from your regular, scheduled posts on the same old social media networks.
Will These Marketing Resolutions Stick?
As IMA’s Co-Founder Bill Faeth often points out, implementing changes is tough. Achieving excellence in inbound marketing, health, or relationships won’t occur overnight. In fact, most expert believe it takes around 30 days to turn a resolution into a habit.
If you’re feeling a bit overwhelmed by your new inbound marketing resolutions, understand it’s going to take some time before your new priorities feel natural. Forbes’ psychology contributor Amy Morin recommends performing plenty of research before changing, and taking a positive, critical thought-based approach to any setbacks you encounter along the way. Building accountability into your process by making these new priorities team goals will also enhance your chances of success. Most importantly, believe in your marketing team and the importance of these new resolutions, and you’ll see outstanding results.
What are your inbound marketing resolutions for 2015? Share your goals in the comments, and we’ll reveal a few of our own!