28 marketing tasks for December

28 marketing tasks for December

There’s just something about a new year. We all want to start it feeling positive and raring to go. But don’t write off the end of 2016 just yet. There are a few marketing tasks you can take care of in December to get your business off to a flying start in January. We’ve prepared this handy list to help get things ship shape.

Take a quick look back

1. Review your 2016 marketing. For each piece of marketing you’ve done in 2016, from adverts to social media, give it a success score out of 10. How you measure success will depend on your business and the activity. Tracking direct sales resulting from the activity is ideal. But if that’s not possible, consider carefully whether the effort/investment has been worth the reward. Anything that scores under 6, be prepared to ditch it in 2017.

2. Review your Google Analytics data for the year. Is there a seasonal pattern? Can you see where campaigns increased web traffic? Where is most of your traffic coming from? Use this data to plan for 2017.

3. Renew or cancel subscriptions. Is anything coming up for renewal with the new year? Adverts in local magazines, for example, often run by calendar year. Look at your review (see point 1) to see which to keep and which to lose.

4. Share a short survey with your customers. Feeling brave? Find out what they really think about your service. You might get some useful feedback you can use to refine your business in 2017.

Looking forward

5. What do you want to achieve for your business in 2017? It’s wise to limit yourself to 3-5 main objectives. Rather than just say “grow sales”, try to be more specific. For example, “secure three new regular stockists” or even “grow sales of diaries by 15%”.

6. Set your marketing budget for 2017. Take a look at our blog post for a rough guide on what you should be spending.

7. Prepare your marketing plan for 2017. Yes, it’s a biggie, but worth taking some time to do now. We’ve shared some tips to help you tackle this before.

8. Carry out some competitor analysis. Are your prices still right? If not and you want to increase or decrease them, the new year is a good time to do this. You may need to let existing customers know your pricing plans – do that now.

9. Update any regular adverts. A fresh look for a fresh year.

10. Think of one new thing you’d like to try marketing-wise in 2017. That could be a video, social media advertising, a leaflet drop…the right thing will depend on your business and your objectives. But testing is an important part of any marketing strategy.

Quick health checks

11. Check that you have Google Analytics (or an equivalent) running behind your website. If you don’t, get it sorted before the new year.

12. Tidy your website. If you do have Analytics running, are there any dead pages on your website that receive no traffic? Can you get rid of them?

13. Check the speed of your website. Google has a tool you can use. If it’s deemed slow, its organic ranking in search engines is likely to suffer.

14. Check your site ranking. If customers finding you via search engines is important for your business, check how your site is ranking for a few key search terms. If you’re not on the first few pages, you need to set aside some time/budget to address this in 2017.

15. Check your website works well on mobiles (e.g. do your buttons resize to allow people to easily click on them without having to pinch and zoom?). If not, make addressing this a priority for early 2017.

16. Check your social media profiles. Do the header image and avatar still look good? Do your descriptions/bios include appropriate keywords?

17. Look objectively at your logo. Are you still happy with your branding? If not, now could be a good time for a refresh, or build this into your 2017 plans.

18. Update the year on your marketing materials. If your website, brochure or any other touchpoint has a year on it, get it updated now ready for next year.

Quick wins

19. Clear the decks! Got a load of old brochures hanging around? As long as they’re still relevant send them out to some prospects you’d really like to turn into customers in 2017. They’re not doing any good in your office. You’ll be glad of the space and you might just get some orders.

20. Give something away. End the year by giving something away for free, or with a big offer. The most appropriate action will depend on your business, but there should be something you can do to generate a final bit of interest. Make sure you use it as a data collection exercise.

21. Repurpose some old content. Have you got a load of old blogs on your website? Take a look at some of the older ones. Chances are there’s some decent content there, but you might have improved your style or knowledge of search engine optimisation since then, or there might have been changes in the market. So rewrite them, republish them, and re-promote them.

22. Write a topical/seasonal blog post or press release. Share it.

23. Get some new testimonials. Call a couple of customers and ask them for a testimonial to go on your website or ask them to review your service on Google Reviews, Facebook, or wherever is most appropriate for your business.

Feel good

24. Send your clients a thank you (or Christmas) card or email to reconnect. Take the time to include a personal message if you can.

25. Make a donation. Rather than sending corporate gifts, let clients know that you’ve chosen to make a donation to a charity instead.

26. Get involved in a charity event and share some photos on social media. Wearing a Christmas jumper is an easy one, and a good cause.

27. Update your LinkedIn profile. Endorse a couple of contacts for a skill they’ve shared with you this year (they might just return the favour).

28. Don’t forget your staff! A little gift and a heartfelt thank you for their hard work throughout the year will be appreciated.