50 Social Media Posts That Can Help People During the Coronavirus Crisis

If you’re feeling a bit stuck with what to post right now on social media, then the answer to that is to think about how you can help people.  This situation has brought up a lot of new needs.  By helping your audience meet those needs, you will raise your profile, build a relationship with them, and have a higher chance of converting them to customers either right now or when this is all over.

So, what kind of content could help people right now?

MENTAL HEALTH

  1. Managing anxiety
  2. Overcoming insomnia
  3. Stopping intrusive thoughts
  4. Managing boredom
  5. Managing depression during the crisis  

FITNESS

  1. Improving your running ability
  2. Maximising walking for fitness
  3. Home strength workouts
  4. Home cardio workouts
  5. Using items around the home to workout with

NUTRITION

  1. Overcoming sugar temptation
  2. Creating nutritious food on a budget
  3. Foods to eat to boost your immune system

HOME

  1. Spring cleaning tips
  2. Sprucing up your garden
  3. Creating a calm home
  4. DIY projects

SELF CARE

  1. Cutting your own fringe
  2. DIY men’s hair cut
  3. Techniques for painting your own nails
  4. Salon treatments in the home
  5. Treating yourself to a home facial

PARENTING

  1. Maintaining attention when homeschooling
  2. Fun activities to do at home
  3. Managing children’s anxiety around illness
  4. Keeping children away from screens
  5. Activities to make your daily walk more fun with children

MARKETING

  1. How to market your business during the crisis
  2. How to market your business when you have been forced to close (e.g. hairdressers, restaurants, pubs, etc.)
  3. How to stand out right now with your marketing
  4. How to get your messaging right
  5. How to create compelling offers that will work right now

BUSINESS

  1. How to furlough your employees
  2. Managing virtual teams
  3. Maintaining productivity during the crisis
  4. Managing business finances

FOOD

  1. How to cook restaurant standard food at home
  2. Creating a meal from a few ingredients
  3. Making your food go further
  4. New cooking techniques to learn

PASSING THE TIME

  1. Book recommendations
  2. Boxset recommendations
  3. New skills to learn
  4. Uplifting songs playlist
  5. Arts and crafts for adults

FINANCES

  1. How to apply for a mortgage holiday
  2. How to reduce your outgoings
  3. Free activities and entertainment
  4. Managing debt
  5. Overcoming financial anxiety

 

This isn’t an exhaustive list.  In fact, it only just scratches the surface. But could certainly help trigger your thinking as to the type of posts you could be creating right now.

Don’t just think about how you could use these ideas in text format.  Consider creating images, image carousels or presentations, infographics or videos.

And, most importantly, stay safe and stay home!

If you want to learn more about marketing your business on social media, I have added an 8 module course on this topic to Planet Social Media.  And you can currently join for only £1!!  You can find out more about the course, and join Planet Social Media to get access to it, here.

 

 

10 Positive Actions To Take On Social Media In The Current Coronavirus Crisis

There’s no denying that this is the weirdest of times for us all.  Whether you’re having to juggle working from home with your children there, stop the routines you’re so used to like going to the gym (and the pub!), having financial concerns or the threat of business closure, or even suffering from coronavirus.

It may want you to hide away from social media, not knowing the right approach to take for the best.  But I suggest the opposite.  Social media can offer a place of solace and togetherness right now.

So, here’s ten positive actions I suggest businesses take on social media right now.

 

  1. ACKNOWLEDGE IT

It frustrates me when you read posts saying how it’s “business as normal” for them.  No matter what situation you have found yourself in as a result of this crisis, it is not business as normal for anyone!!  We are having to change the way in which we live our day-to-day lives.

So, acknowledge that this is the case for your audience.  Yes, social media can offer some form of escapism.  Or add humour to the situation.  But this can still be done while acknowledging what’s going on in the world.

Simply starting your post with things such as “let’s not mention the C word for 1 minute!” to lead in to your non-coronavirus related post.  Or a “I think we could all do with a laugh at the minute” to lead in to your humorous post.

The important thing is you don’t act as if nothing in the world has changed.

 

  1. BE VISIBLE

No matter how this has impacted your business, if you want your business to still be operating when this is all over (and one day it definitely will be), it’s important to stay visible and don’t let your audience forget you exist.

You don’t have to post as often as you used to.  I have definitely reduced my volume of content creation, mainly due to the time constraints of having my three young girls at home all day on my own.  But also, I understand that many of us aren’t feeling all that creative right now.

If you’re stuck for ideas of what content to share, the first thing I would be asking is ‘how can HELP.’

 

  1. HELP

If there’s one type of content that is definitely working right now, it’s content that provides help, support and guidance to others.  We all have new needs that we didn’t have before.  And new questions we are struggling to answer.

Do a brainstorming session of how you can help people right now through your content, with the knowledge you have.

There are needs and wants for:

  • Keeping children entertained in the home
  • Keeping fit at home
  • Managing nutrition on limited resources
  • Cooking restaurant standard food at home
  • Home cocktail making masterclasses
  • Understanding furloughing of employees
  • Managing productivity when working from home
  • Home hair dying when you have only had it done at the salon
  • Self care
  • Managing anxiety
  • Selling in difficult times
  • Managing finances
  • Learning new skills
  • Managing boredom
  • Overcoming insomnia

You get the idea!!!  We’re all faced with new needs, so how can your business help with those.  For example, a restaurant could provide guidance on how to cook the perfect steak.  A beauty salon on how to perform your own facial at home.  A bar could teach people how to make cocktails.  Just because you’ve been forced to close, doesn’t mean you have to stop posting.

 

  1. ENGAGE

I think it’s really important we stay connected with others while we are isolated in our own homes.  Social media offers such a big opportunity for this.  Simply taking a bit of time out each day to comment on the posts of those you follow will both help you feel a bit more connected to the outside world, but to also build relationships with those you engage with.

You can also look at different ways to engage, such as sending voice notes or video messages, to add a more personal touch.  This will definitely give a boost to those you send them to.

And, commenting on other’s posts will also help increase the engagement on your own posts.  Stay connected.

 

  1. SELL

Selling is tricky at times like this isn’t it?  I say times like this.  When have we ever had a time like this?!!!!

But, businesses have to survive it, and still need to make sales.  I think many businesses assume that their audience have no money or no inclination to buy right now.  And an assumption is exactly what it is.  There are still people earning every day.  And they might be more inclined to buy right now, depending on what you sell.

I usually suggest an 80/20 split with your social media content, with 80% being non-sales posts and 20% being sales posts.  I don’t see that as being any different right now.  Your sales messages will probably need adapting though.  You may need to point out that you are still operating and still need to make sales.  You may want to adapt your message to suggest why this is something that they might need right now.

You may also want to consider running an offer.  You don’t have to dramatically reduce you’re pricing.  Again, it’s an assumption that people don’t have money right now.  But, it could be a good idea to run a deadlined offer for something that could be really helpful to people right now.

For example, I’m currently running an offer to join Planet Social Media for only £1, to help businesses learn more about how to grow their business on social media (which I think is becoming more and more important to businesses, especially those who have had marketing budgets slashed and are having to rely on free or low cost methods).

Remember, there is a big difference between profiting (which keeps your business going) and profiteering, which is taking advantage of others in a time of need (such as those people who bought loads of hand sanitizer then sold it on ebay for ridiculous prices).

 

  1. GO LIVE

Have you noticed there seems to be an influx of people going live at the moment?  I think partly it’s a need to connect with others beyond our four walls.  I also think people are more in need of openly communicating.

If you’ve never gone live before, or have a fear of going live, now could be a good time to break through that fear.  The majority of the audience for a live broadcast watch the recording after.  So the first few times, you could decide not to share the recording of the live and limit your audience while you get confident in doing it.

You could also schedule lives that are relevant to your audience’s needs.  Let them know you’ll be going live and the time/date and suggest they add it to their calendar, or add a countdown on Instagram stories for them to get reminded.  You can then prep the main points you want to discuss.  It’s a great opportunity for your audience to interact directly with you and ask questions.

 

  1. SHARE SELFIES

Social media has always been about people.  But again, I think this is more important than ever.  Remind your audience who the people in your business are.  They may not be able to see you face-to-face, but they won’t forget what you look like!  It adds a much more personal touch to your social media.  People want to hear from people right now, not stock images.

Show your face!!!!

When taking selfies, lighting is important.  You want to stand near a natural light source.  Cloudy days work best rather than direct sunlight.  You can also use apps like Snapseed to improve your image and add features such as brightness and lens blur.

 

  1. OFFER SOMETHING NEW

It may be that you’ve offered the same product/service for years and years but are unable to sell it right now.  Let’s not use the word ‘PIVOT’ because everyone else is!!!  But it could be that you add a new offering and share it on social media.

This could be as simple as a takeaway service if you’re a restaurant and never offered it before, delivering home hair dye kits if you’re a hairdressers, creating an at home pamper package, switching your in-person training delivery to online, creating a new online course, running online exercise classes, and so on.

I’m sure you’ve seen many businesses add a new offering to allow them to continue in the current situation.  And you may be able to as well.  Social media is a great place to share what you are now offering.  AND, you can continue to offer it once this is all over.

 

  1. BE INSPIRED

I’m finding social media a place of inspiration lately.  For good news stories.  For businesses doing their part to support those on the front line.  For quotes to lift you up.  For humorous memes on this whole crazy situation.

Social media can definitely be somewhere to lighten the mood and remind you about the good going on in the world.  It may just get your creative juices flowing when you see others creating inspiring content.

 

  1. LEARN

Many of you reading this will find more time on your hands.  Which offers a great opportunity to learn new skills in your business that will put you in a solid position when all this blows over.  Jot down everything you’d like to learn about for your business, and then seek out the social media accounts that will help you learn that information.  Also look for books, podcasts and online courses that can help you achieve your learning goals.

You will probably want to relate this to your particular situation right now.  For example, you might want to learn how to turn your business from offline in to online.  Or, if you have been forced to temporarily close down, now is the time to be learning as many marketing skills as possible to help you grow quickly when you are able to reopen.

If you want to learn more about marketing your business on social media, I have added an 8 module course on this topic to Planet Social Media.  And you can currently join for only £1!!  You can find out more about the course, and join Planet Social Media to get access to it, here.

 

Wishing you all good health.  Stay safe and stay home x

Making 2020 Your Best Year Ever On Social Media

I have a really really REALLY good feeling about this year!

It may be because I’m launching my new business.  But I also just have this feeling that great things are about to happen!

2020 can be a year we can all achieve huge success.  I for one am committing more and more time to my social media activity, in particular Instagram.  LinkedIn has served me as a great source of business for many years now, and continues to do so.  But I think Instagram could take its crown for my new business.  Time will tell!!

So, how can you make 2020 your best year ever on social media?

1. Create content your audience wants

Don’t create content for you.  Don’t focus on what you want to sell them.  Don’t focus your content on what you want to tell people.  Focus on what they want to hear.  With every new year, there are more and more social media users.  If you focus your content on your business and away from your audience, they’ll just scroll on past.  Think about how you can help your audience, how you can add value to them, how you can entertain them, how you can inspire them, how you can make them laugh, how you can get them thinking.  All of this will have a much bigger impact and will undoubtedly lead to more sales than focusing on sales related posts.

 

2. Spend more time engaging than creating

Engagement is more important than ever on social media.  Why expect engagement on your posts if you don’t give it elsewhere.  My engagement went up dramatically when I spent more time engaging on others’ posts.  I aim now to spend approximately an hour a day engaging on social media, and it has had a massive impact!  It’s lead to more engagement and reach on my posts.  But, more importantly in business, it’s lead to more sales!

 

3. Pay attention to your insights

Your audience is telling you what they enjoy from you through your insights.  Those posts that get the most engagement are the ones they love.  Those that get the least are the ones they are less keen on.  Don’t ignore the messages your audience are giving you.  Check in weekly with your insights and analytics to see what’s working best for you on each platform.

 

4. Be more you!

I’ve always spouted on about how important it is to be personable on social media.  But again, I think that’s more important than ever.  Businesses that don’t have faces tend to struggle on social media.  Your audience want to see the people in the business.  Faces bring your business to life.  And, after all, we socialise with people.  And this is SOCIAL media!  Include selfies of you and your team, sign off with names if managed by multiple people, share more about your life beyond your business.  You know you’ve got this right when your audience feels like they know you despite having never met you.

 

5. Stop worrying about the number of followers you have

If I had a penny for every time someone asked me how to get more followers, I could buy myself a fair few chocolate bars!  My first question would be ‘how much business do you get from the followers you already have?’.  If the answer is very little, then what’s the point of getting more followers that you hardly get any business from?  Instead, focus your attention on building relationships with the followers you already have.  Get to know them.  Let them get to know you.  It’s very rare that any follower is going to buy from you after seeing one post.  So be consistent with your content, engage with their content and build that relationship. Then when you do post a sales message, it’s far more likely to convert.  When you build relationships with the followers you already have, you will naturally grow your follower base too, as you’ll have more engagement on your posts and will get more and more reach!

 

6. Create video content

It’s time!  This is the year to get out of your comfort zone and start getting in front of the camera!  People hearing you speak is a sure fire way to increase the relationship with them and often a great way to get your message across.  Hardly anyone likes being on camera.  Which is why hardly anyone does it!  Be the one who does.  It will really help you stand out.

 

7. Stop doing what everyone else is doing

It’s tempting to look at successful accounts on social media and think ‘I’ll just do what they do’.  Then when you do, it doesn’t work!  We firstly need to work with our audience, not someone else’s!  So, think more deeply about how you could appeal to your audience. And being the same as everyone else will not help you stand out.  Think of a way you could be different.  For example, a video I put out on Instagram at Christmas received my highest view count of any video I’ve ever posted on there.  Why?  Because I sang on it!  Be different!

There is so much I could add to this.  But definitely, doing the 7 things above will lead you to much greater social media success in 2020.  I hope it’s an amazing year for you!

If you want to explore more about how you can make 2020 your best year ever on social media, I’m hosting a free webinar on Wednesday 15th January.  You can register here!

Reviewing Your Year On Social Media

The end of 2019 is fast approaching!!

I for one am very excited for 2020.  It’s going to bring a lot of change in my business and a new approach to how I do things.

A big part of that for me is going to be planning my content for the year ahead (look out for the next blog for more on this!).  But the first stage in that process is to review how well this year has gone on social media.

For this, I’ll be looking at the free insights and analytics available on each platform.  I’ll look back through the year’s posts and see which performed best in terms of:

  • Reach
  • Likes
  • Comments
  • Shares
  • Clicks
  • Views

This will help guide my content for next year, as I’ll know what content my audience has been loving in 2019!

I’ll also be looking at which posts performed least well in each of the above metrics.  This will then give me an idea of what I should doing/talking about in 2020.

You see, your audience are telling you what they enjoy and what they’re less keen on.  You just need to pay attention to them!

This is definitely something you should be doing more than once a year.  At the very least, I would suggest looking at your content every month to see what performs best and least well.

So, set yourself an appointment before the end of the year to review your metrics before you start to plan your social media content for 2020!

Doing What Everyone Else Is Doing Won’t Get You Very Far

Every day we’re being hit by different types of marketing.  TV ads, billboards, leaflets, Google searches, emails and, of course, social media posts.

As such, as marketers of a business, our subconscious absorbs these different types of marketing.  Then, when we go to create our own, our brain naturally suggests creating what is very similar to everyone else.  Because that is sat there in our subconscious.

I do it myself.  I get the idea for a blog post or social media post.  And sometimes I realise it’s because I’ve seen a similar one recently.

Our subconscious can be a bit of a pain in the bum!!  It stops us breaking free creatively, because our brain is getting filled with the ‘norm’.

If our content replicates that of others, we just become part of the noise.  We’re not standing out in any way.  Creative posts stand out, same old same old don’t!

Instead, challenge yourself to think about what other businesses in your industry are NOT doing!

Are they NOT creating video?  Are they NOT sharing selfies?  Are they NOT going live?  Are they NOT raising discussions with their posts?

This will definitely help you be seen on social media.  And what’s the point of posting if you’re not going to be seen?

If you are stuck with how to be different on social media, you can watch the recording of a recent webinar I did.  Click here to access the ‘Be Different On Social Media’ webinar recording!

 

What Do Your Audience Want On Social Media?

If you want social media success, the most important thing to focus on is your audience.  It is very tempting to focus your content on what you want to tell people.  But if you instead shift that to what they want to hear, you are likely to achieve so much more success.

But how do we know what our audience wants from us on social media?

 

  1. CREATE A PERSONA

Write down every detail you can possibly think of in relation to your target audience (and remember if you’re B2B, your audience is not a business.  It’s people within the business).  Drill down to age, location, gender, job role, family, education, industry, what makes them laugh, what are they worried about, what challenges them, what do they read, what are they interested in, what do they want to learn, and anything else you can possibly think of!!!

Grab yourself a big piece of paper and write down everything.  Then create a persona from this.  In other words, take it from being a huge audience to being one person.  You can even give them a name!  If it’s tricky to make just one persona, you can make a few.  But try to avoid having any more than 5.  Each time you create content, have this ‘person’ in mind.

 

2. SPEAK TO YOUR CUSTOMERS

I’m sure you’re trying to attract people that are similar to your customers to follow you on social media.  So, speak to your customers.  If you have regular conversations with your customers, ask them about their social media use and what they would like to see from you on social media.  Ask them to give you honest feedback on your current activity and whether they can relate to it.

 

3. RUN A SURVEY

You can ask questions on social media directly to get some feedback from your audience.  You can also run a more in-depth survey to gain a better understanding of what might appeal to your audience.  Free tools like Survey Monkey will allow you to email a survey or share the link on social media.  You could incentivise the survey with a prize draw to increase response.  Ask questions like which platforms they use and the type of content they like to see (top tip: don’t leave this open ended.  Instead give multiple choice responses so you don’t end up with lots of different answers!).

 

4. LET THEM TELL YOU

But by the far the easiest and most effective way of understanding what your audience wants on social media is to let them tell you.  And they do this by engaging, or not engaging, with your content.  Each platform gives you insights and analytics behind each of your posts.  At the end of every week, look at how much engagement you have had for each of your posts.  Likes, comments and shares typically suggest that your audience is interested in that content.  If you don’t get as much engagement for a post, it is likely this is due to them not being as interested.  This will give you an idea of what your audience wants to see from you.

Pay attention to overall themes.  For example, if you get more engagement for videos rather than images.  Or if you get more comments on images with people in rather than products.  Do more of what gets you the most engagement, and less of what gets you the least!!

 

So, what does your audience want?  If you don’t know, it’s time to start figuring it out!

 

 

 

Keep It Personal

There seems to be a habit in business of leaving yourself at the door when you log on to social media and becoming a corporate machine.  But people don’t want to speak to a machine.  They want to speak to a human.  Plus, corporate speak can be pretty boring!!

So, how can you make your social media more personal and less corporate* (*boring)!

 

1.   Your Personality

Include personality in your posts, or as I like to call it, BRANDONALITY.  This is the personality of your brand.  This could be the personality of the business overall, or it could be your personality.  The latter is especially the case if you are a small owner-managed business.  My personality is definitely what you get on social media.  So, embrace your personality.  It will immediately strip out the corporate approach.

 

2.   Your Voice

As a result, it should sound like someone talking in your social media posts.  Use a conversational tone.  Don’t use words you wouldn’t use in every day language.  We have a habit of using words like ‘therefore’ and ‘however’ in text, but often do you actually use these in everyday life?

 

3.   Your Day-to-Day

Share more of what’s happen in the day-to-day life in your business.  It brings your audience along with you and they understand more of the ‘behind the scenes’ and what it is you do.  You could do this via short videos, such as Instagram or Facebook stories.  Or share short updates on Twitter, including pictures.  Bring your business to life!

 

4.   Your Interests

Take it beyond talking just business.  Share the interests of those within your business.  Is there a particularly sport that everyone in the office is talking about?  Is someone running the marathon?  Are you doing something as a business to raise money for charity?  Or if you work on your own, you can share more of your personal life (though of course only what you’re comfortable sharing online).

 

5.   Your Conversations

And the final part of being more personal on social media means not just broadcasting but also interacting!  If you’ve ever met someone who talks non-stop about themselves and doesn’t bother to listen to what you have to say, you’ll probably remember some of the choice words you had in your head about that person.  Yet, so many businesses take this exact approach on social media.  Interact with the posts of others, especially your target audience, and build conversation with them!

So, it’s time to get personal on social media.  Just don’t get ‘too’ personal, ok?!

7 Quick Ways To Increase Engagement on Social Media

Engagement is more key than ever on social media.  The more someone engages with your post, the more likely they are to see future posts of yours.  It helps increase the reach of that post.  AND, it builds a relationship with the person engaging!

So, how can you increase engagement on social media?

  1. Ask Questions

Why should people respond when you don’t ask them to?!  Statements close conversation, questions open it up.  Add a question at the end of your update to encourage people to hit reply /leave a comment.

 

2. Fill in the Blank

We struggle to leave an unfinished _________ sentence!!  So, ask people to fill in the blank.  ‘The best thing about my day was _____”.  “The one thing I love most about gin is _______”!  Whatever it is, get people to fill it in!

 

3. Tag a Friend

Get them to tag a mate who the post applies to, or who they think of when they read the post.  It’s the trigger to get other people involved, and leads to comments too!

 

4. Caption This

Always a good bit fun with photos!  Get people to caption your images, or maybe guess where they were taken!

 

5. Respond to Comments

The more you respond back, the more you will encourage people to engage with. you.

 

6. Engage With Their Posts

Go and engage with other people/user’s posts!  The more engage yourself, the more engagement you are likely to see returned.

 

7. Give Them Content That They Love

This is probably the most overlooked one.  Most businesses focus their content on what they want to tell people.  Instead, focus your content on what your audience wants to hear.  They are far more likely to engage with content they can relate to, helps them out, or that they find funny!

So, there is your quick guide to increasing engagement!  I hope it leads to some very fruitful conversations on social media!

My Social Media Focus For 2018

First of all, in case you haven’t heard it enough, HAPPY NEW YEAR!  I truly hope this year brings you all the success you desire.

But, of course, success doesn’t just come from desiring it.  It comes from getting stuff done too!  So, I thought I’d share with you what I will mainly be focusing on with my own social media activity in 2018.

It really follows on from what I started to do in 2017 and that is VIDEO!  Video is such an important element of your social media activity now.  I have never seen as much engagement on my social media platforms as I have when I started incorporating video posts on a regular basis.  So, this will be something I’m continuing without a doubt in 2018.

I will be creating videos up to 1 minute long at least 3 times a week, and sharing those videos on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.  The preference would be to have differing content on each of the platforms, but I know I don’t have the time to do that.  Better for me to get as many views of the same video as possible, than restricting those numbers by sharing it on only one platform.

It’s a good idea to add subtitles to your videos, as so many people watch without audio.  To do this, I use an app called Clips to record my videos on my iPhone (unfortunately, I don’t think there is an Android alternative).  This adds the subtitles as you are recording your video.  It doesn’t get them all exactly right, but just go back after and edit any mistakes, and it’s a really quick way of getting subtitles on your video without creating long winded SRT files.

The whole process of creating and uploading a video to each platform takes me about 5 minutes.  Which is why it’s achievable to aim for posting several videos a week.  I aim for a one take video.  They may not be absolutely perfect, but far better to post a good video several times a week, than never post a perfect video because I don’t have time to create it!

Another type of video I’m going to be using in 2018 is more LIVE video!  I ended last year by going live 14 times during December on my Facebook page.  I plan to continue this, but with a more focused approach and a live schedule.  I’m also going to go live more on Twitter, via Periscope, and possibly stream the same live broadcast to both at the same time to compare viewer figures.

And finally, I’m going to start creating some vlogs for YouTube!  For all I was posting short video content direct to my social media platforms last year, I created very little content for YouTube.  I have decided to start doing a weekly blog (video blog), taking you along with me to speaking engagements and training sessions, as well as sharing some social media and small business hints and tips!

That’s a lot of video content!  But video is going to be more key than ever in 2018 and can’t be ignored.  If you’ve never created a video for social media, it’s time to get started.  Believe me, there are very fee people in this world who enjoy being in front of the camera!  But the more you do it, the more you get used to it.  No one will be scrutinising how you look or sound other than you!  They care more about your message.  So, jump out of that comfort zone and hit that record button!

7 Things To Do During The Christmas Wind Down

For some businesses, Christmas time is their craziest time of year.  While for others, it’s the quietest time of the year.  If you’re in the crazy camp, then this post won’t be much use to you (but can be applied at your quieter times).  But for those of you who are currently twiddling your thumbs, I thought I’d suggest a few things you could be doing during this ‘down time’.  December has actually been a busy one for me, but next week gets a little quieter, with only one course to run, so I’ll be putting some of this in to action myself!

1. Evaluate the Year

It’s a really good opportunity to spend time evaluating how 2017 has been for your business.  Do an analysis of all your numbers.  Profit and turnover are the obvious ones.  But what about your email list?  Social media following?  Customer numbers?  Number of new products or services released? And look at what worked well in the year and what didn’t work so well.  Marketing campaigns.  Social media activity.  Which products/services sold best?  And think about the best and worst things that happened in your business this year.  It’s hard to grow moving forward if you don’t know how you’ve previously performed, so this will give you a basis for step 2…

2. Set Your Goals For The Year Ahead

It’s so important to set out your goals for what you want to achieve in the year ahead.  Not just financial but life too, as this will relate to the financial success of your business.  You should also think about the numbers mentioned above too and how you want to grow them, such as your email list and social media following.  Consider the new offerings you want to create and how you want your team to grow.  And set yourself a big scary goal too!  One that will make 2018 the best year ever for you!  It’s been proven that goals are more likely to be achieved if they’re written down, so make the time to write down all of the above.  I have treated myself to this workbook to help my plan for the year.

3. Create Some Content

When we’re in the throws of day-to-day work, it can be hard to find time to create good content for social media.  This time offers you the opportunity to have some content ready and waiting for the new year.  This could be blog posts, videos, images, written updates, GIFs, infographics, or any other form of content that will work well for your business.  You could also create a content calendar for the year, outlining what content you want to be released when through the year.

4. Design a New Product/Service Offering

If you’d love to offer something new to your customers next year, now is a great time to start creating that product or service.  Think about the products and services that worked best in 2017 and how you could advance on those in 2018.  I have a new programme I’m launching in the new year, and I’m going to start recording it next week.

5.Create a Launch Strategy

Now you have your new product or service, you could create a launch strategy for how you’re going to let you customers know about it.  Write emails, social media posts, create videos, and do whatever is included within your launch strategy so it’s all ready to go.  Set the sequence to build up to the launch, and work out how you’re going to wow those who have purchased the product so they talk about it!

6. Learn Something New

I’m a big fan of learning.  It’s definitely been the number one factor in growing my business over the 8 years I’ve been in business (and of course, implementing what I’ve learnt!).  To me, any down time is an opportunity to learn something new.  Grab a book that you know will impact your success in 2018.  Or sign up to an online course and learn about a new topic.  I worked with Fresh Bananas this year on creating a social media marketing module for their online SEO course.  If you want to learn about SEO, with a bit of social media thrown in, then take a look here.  And, obviously, if you’re looking for social media success in 2018, then you need a copy of this book!!

7. Take a Break

Sometimes we can push ourselves too much, and a break is actually a good thing for our business. Christmas is busy enough without adding extra pressure on yourself.  If you’ve had a busy year, but the next couple of weeks are really quiet for you, then relax and enjoy them!  You’ll be ready to hit 2018 refreshed and ready for your best year ever!!!