What Your New Year’s Marketing Resolution Should Be For 2016

by Dec 27, 2015Strategy, Tactical0 comments

“How does one turn this opportunity into a New Year’s resolution?”

AUTHOR’S NOTE: With 2016 fast approaching, it won’t be long before the 31st rolls around and everyone will be asking you what your New Year’s resolution is. Well? Have you given it any thought? I have. And if you’re looking for a good one that can benefit you personally as well as professionally, then this might be one for you too.

The problem with resolutions like losing weight, quitting smoking and saving more money, is that it’s hard to get started. They’re certainly important, but they’re not fun or very inspiring. They require “effort”. This is probably why most people don’t get around to actually resolving them.

If it’s been a while since you’ve made a New Year’s resolution that you stuck to, then consider this one. Both your personal and professional health will count on it. But first, let me explain a few things…

It's Becoming Hard to Compete Online Nowadays.

Globalization and the Internet have made it extremely difficult for many businesses in Western countries to compete both locally and internationally. Cheap overseas labour, economies of scale and the sheer number of competitors are bound discourage even the most entrepreneurial people from starting businesses.

$5 logo designs on fiverr.com, custom mugs for less than $0.01/piece on alibaba.com, $9.99/month to have access to all the music in the world with Apple Music… These giants are are putting tons out of people out of businesses because most simply can’t compete on the basis of price. Aha! This is precisely where the opportunity lies for those of us that are still hanging in there. Keep this in mind. On to my next point:

Is Social Media Dead?

Social media is maturing. We know this because Facebook and Twitter new users and overall usage frequency are declining. What does this really mean? Well, many things. Perhaps, the most important trend to spot is the shift that is occurring with social behaviour on a large scale: the pendulum is swinging back in favour of face-to-face contact.

Facebook and Twitter will continue to exist and play a major role in the lives of most, at least for the foreseeable future. So no, social media is not dead. I’m not suggesting that you delete your social media accounts and start anew here. Living life online was fun for a while, but it has been losing its novelty and people are starting to return back to their roots.

"Living life online was fun for a while, but it has been losing its novelty and people are starting to return back to their roots."

The past few years have been a kind of social hibernation period for most people because of social media. But the thaw is upon us! People are stretching their legs, crawling out of their caves – resorting more and more to old fashion ways of maintaining relationships, like catching up over coffee, lunch or dinner, hosting parties, etc.

Social Behaviour Dictates Consumer Behaviour.

It is understood that consumption behaviour is largely influenced by social trends. The two are highly correlated, if not one in the same. With less people using technology to facilitate social interactions and maintain relationships, you can imagine how this will impact the way people do business. Yet again, building real relationships with clients will be more important than staying a top their Twitter feed or earning their like on Facebook when it comes to winning their business. Good news!

Remember my first point? It’s hard to compete online because most of us can’t compete on the basis of price. Well, this social shift will make it easier for us to do business because relationships provide immunity to price sensitivity. Your client is far more likely to encourage you over your competitor who is offering a similar service at a discounted price because of the relationship you've built.

New Years Fireworks Show - Reminds me to keep my New Year's resolution

Your New Year’s Marketing Resolution for 2016.

How does one turn this opportunity into an actionable New Year's resolution? Remember it’s all about relationships. Generally speaking, there are two parts to this:

  1. Building new relationships
  2. Maintaining existing relationships

In marketing, you should always look to optimize your return on investment (ROI). If time is your investment in this case, then you should focus more on the second one, since it takes much less time to maintain a relationship than it does to build a new one. Here’s how to turn this into a resolution:

  • Schedule one coffee every week

It’s as simple as that. The person you invite for coffee can be a family member, a friend, an old colleague/boss, an old high school classmate, etc. Get in touch with them. The best way would be to call, but hey, people aren’t boycotting technology, you can send them an e-mail or a Facebook message too. They will be happy to hear from you and delighted to catch up.

When you meet for coffee, don’t be all business, be social. Talk about what they’ve been up to lately, how things are with the family, etc. If you’re genuinely interested in what they do, they will reciprocate. Usually, conversations revert to talking about work anyways and telling them a little bit about what you do is enough to plant a seed. They will be willing to encourage you by becoming a client, telling their boss, or a friend who is in need of your services.

By this time next year, you will have caught up with 50 people. Your social life will be re-invigorated by maintaining these relationships. As an added bonus, a few of these people will help you professionally too.

Make it Your Resolution for 2016.

Schedule one coffee every week with someone you know. This should be your resolution for 2016. If you’re worried that you won’t stick to it, then add a recurring reminder in your e-calendar, stick a Post-it note on your computer, or ask someone that you see regularly to hold you accountable to it. Sticking to this goal will be as socially gratifying as professionally rewarding. Unlike losing weight, or quitting smoking, this resolution won’t hurt to try!

Be in the know

(without having to remember to be in the know).

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Meet the author.

Taro Abarbanel-Uemura

Marketing Strategist

Meet Fortified Marketing's founder and lead marketing consultant. Taro loves reading fascinating articles on various marketing-related subjects, just as much as he enjoys writing about them. When he isn’t savouring a latte while working on his newest blog post, he can be found at a coffee shop in Ottawa's Little Italy, or marathoning shows and documentaries on Netflix.

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