I’ve never really cared for New Year’s resolutions. My take has always been, “If you want to do something, just start today. Why wait for January 1st?” But since budgets and annual marketing/communications plans tend to start anew on January 1st, I’m making five social media resolutions for myself, and my clients.
1) Measurement & Metrics: Put a Stake in the Ground…Today.
Most of my clients are forward-thinking enough to have some form of measurement process in place – the New Year is a good time to reassess that process. What do you want to accomplish via social marketing in 2013? Are you following the appropriate metrics to track your progress? Are you actively tracking any metrics? Now would be a good time to put a stake in the ground – we’ll all be thankful we did when we have results to celebrate in March. Think of this like your resolution to get into swimsuit shape by spring.
2) Get to Know My Followers/Audiences Even Better
A lot has changed since January 2012. Pinterest, Google+, Instagram and even Facebook’s privacy settings have come a long way (for better or worse…), and users are constantly changing their habits. Not to mention the fact that individuals are most likely becoming burnt out on information, making it harder to have a meaningful interaction with the people in your online community. Reassess what they want to talk about, what they want to read/watch/interact with – and how those wants might be different from platform to platform. This is similar to your, “Stay in touch with my friends more frequently” resolution.
3) Define the “Action” I’d Like My Community to Take
Conversations, engagements and page views are all great, but what action do you want your followers to take? Purchasing a product? Visiting a website, or visiting a retail location? Sharing your posts? If you define the action, your social media/content plan will become infinitely clearer. Your “spend more time with my family” resolution is a lot more attainable when you tie it to something tangible like, “eat dinner at the dining room table at least twice a week.”
4) Invest in Quality Content
I beg of you, it’s time to stop saying, “content is king” and start acting on it. Assign resources and budget to meaningful content creation in 2013. If you know what your community wants, what action you’d like them to take and what metrics you’re tracking, then spending time and budget on dynamic content to connect those dots will be more than worth it. I like to think of this as the “stop talking about it and get it done” resolution.
5) Be More Social, Have More Fun
Don’t let all this talk about metrics/content/audiences/goals consume you so much that you forget a fact that has not changed in the past year: it’s still “social” media. Resolve to interact with people more often. Post a quick “congrats,” “cool!,” “you rock,” and “where did you find that?!?” more often. Promote colleagues, partners and friends; share interesting and useful content from others; and generally talk more about others than yourself or your company. After all, is there a more noble resolution than, “Putting others before yourself?”
Jim Licko is a senior director of social media and digital strategy at GroundFloor Media. He often has a short attention span and likes to make resolutions at all times of the year rather than waiting for New Year’s Day.