It’s that time of the year again, when every content marketer — professional and amateur alike — is thinking about next year’s resolutions; when every content marketing article and blog seems to be about the big trends that stand ready to shape 2015.
Many of us have paused over the last few weeks to think about which technologies and platforms we need to embrace in order to stay relevant next year; which strategies to uphold, and which to discard. We’ll likely consider boosting our content marketing spend, and perhaps also our content marketing time commitment.
All of this is good and reasonable, and there is something to be said for making big resolutions. The problem is twofold.
One, many content marketers — particularly small business owners who do their own content development — frankly don’t have the time or the resources to make big resolutions, so this entire line of thinking can be daunting. And two, focusing on these huge resolutions distracts us from the little things we could be doing, the small choices we might make to market more effectively in 2015.
Investing in People
If I could recommend one game-changing resolution for small business owners, it would be this: spend more time interacting with your followers and fans in 2015. Devote 15 minutes a day to checking your direct messages and your Facebook inquiries and the comments on your blog. Respond, offer answers, deliver value — or simply thank people for participating.
This is a meaningful resolution that happens to be fairly easy to implement, as well. Yes, it requires some discipline — but it doesn’t require you to implement any new strategies, learn any new skills, spend any more money or spend too much more time. It simply realigns you to the real purpose of content marketing — engagement — in a way that many of us desperately need.
Scouring for Content
Need another small resolution that can pay big dividends in your content marketing efforts? Try this: open a Word document or an Evernote notebook and start keeping a running list of blog entries — links you find that you want to comment on, trends you want to engage, questions you get from your customers or your social media followers. Get yourself into the mindset of always looking for content fodder, or always having a few ideas in the hopper, and of always being ready to write, as soon as your scheduled blogging time comes around.
Again, this is easy. It requires nothing more than some discipline and a new mindset. Yet it can dramatically boost your efficiency and diversify your blog offerings.
Small Actions Make a Big Splash
There are plenty of complicated, earth-shattering ways in which you can change up your content marketing game, and perhaps should — but don’t underestimate the value in small resolutions. Spend a day rewriting your website content. Be more diligent in planning your editorial calendar. Resolve to post in at least two LinkedIn group discussions per week.
Change your habits — yes, even the small ones — and see what a difference it can make.