With 2018 approaching fast, I can see business owners scrambling left, right and centre to plan and prep for the new year. Lists of goals are being created, and ambitions are high. Marketing is always a big topic of discussion, and with the Internet shifting and changing all the time, it's hard to know what to focus on in the New Year!
I've put together a list of all the areas of marketing that I believe are going to be important in 2018, and I hope they help you to find areas that you want to focus on, too!
Use Instagram Stories
Instagram Stories has been around for over a year now, and it's not going anywhere. In fact, I use Instagram Stories almost more than actually scrolling through Instagram now! I love it's reliability, it can be funny, and lets everyone be a bit more candid. Using it though, is quite important. People are engaging with stories more than ever, so if you want to be seen, you better be on there. I use Instagram Stories to share more about my personal life, my travels, announce blog posts, and share extra images that might not fit the theme of my grid! I've seen massive engagement from Instagram Stories (far more than from just posting images), so I'm going to continue to make big efforts on Stories in 2018.
You probably know that I'm really loving Pinterest at the moment thanks to these two blog posts I wrote a few weeks ago. Well, that love is going to continue well into 2018! Use Pinterest to share any work you do, any blog posts you write, your Instagram images, images which lead to your website, but also to gather a tribe of people who are interested in what you do. Pinterest is still one of the number one ways to direct people to your website, so don't give up on it for 2018.
Do Live Video
Oh my goodness, live video scares the living daylight out of me. I ventured into making vlogs in 2017 with quite a lot of success (however I did stop towards the end of the year - I'm getting back to it in 2018, don't worry!). I've never done any live video yet, but I know it is one of the most engaging ways to market yourself. I'm going to make an effort to go live a few times a month in 2018, sharing the behind the scenes during photoshoots, answer questions, showing my day to day. I'm scared, but I'm going to try. Who's going to try with me?!
Network In Person
Of course, we can market ourselves online till we're blue in the face, but you know what we all still need to do in 2018? Face to face marketing. SCARY! Yes, I hate it, and find meeting new people really hard. If I walk into a networking breakfast/lunch/dinner on my own, I want to hide in a corner. The trick: go in with the aim of meeting only one new person. It's hard, but I know from experience that whenever I do it, I'll always leave having met one person who I believe is a good new connection.
Post Less to Instagram, but More Consciously
Instagram and it's algorithm are and (I think) forever will be a big topic of conversation. I flutter in and out of caring about the algorithm, to not bothering about it at all. In 2018, I'm going to be experimenting with posting less, but posting better. It seems that the days of posting everyday to get you noticed are gone. Posting less frequently, but having those posts be really amazing and engaging is the way forward.
Don’t Give Up On Facebook
Oh Facebook, I can see business owners fleeing you. And I understand, my Facebook Business Page hasn't grown by more than 50 followers in 3 years! Thats AWFUL! However, the people who do follow me on Facebook are still very engaged, and I don't believe we should abandon them if we have them. So continue to post on Facebook, share your news, post images, do a Facebook Live, and make the most of it.
Join in Twitter Conversation
I'll admit that I'm not the best user of Twitter for professional purposes, however I definitely think it's still important that we engage with Twitter in 2018. I'll be using Twitter to join in on chats, engaging with people who interest me, and brands and business that I want to work with.
Build Your Mailing Lists
Newsletters are popping up left right and centre at the end of 2017, and for good reason: we're realising more and more that the followers we have on social media are not ours, they belong to Instagram, or Facebook, or Twitter. If those platforms decide to shut down tomorrow, we would all lose them! So the solution is to build mailing lists. I had a go at this in 2017, with little success, however I'm going to be approaching 2018 with a new strategy, and giving growing my mailing list a much better shot! I think you should too.