It is that time of year again when everyone starts planning for next year. Here's a guide to how and what you should be planning on for technology and marketing.
Please do not make this a resolution. In fact, I think you should avoid making resolutions all together. The first line in several definitions of the word "resolutions" is "a formal expression of opinion or intention made."
Let's unpack that first, before going any further.
Opinions and intentions are for people who pretend they're going to succeed. Plans, objectives, and measurable results are for people who're serious about accomplishing their goals.
When dealing with technology and marketing, if you resolve to spend 15 minutes a day on social media to grow your online presence, and then you miss a day, you are setting yourself up for failure.
Here's how to avoid that in 2012 with regards to technology.
1) You need a plan on building your social media presence. If you're still unconvinced that social media is a great tool for growing your business, you are playing with fire. Set clear targets based on what you want to accomplish. Then, backtrack this goal into manageable, measurable, steps upon which you can act. For example, you might want to increase your following on Facebook by 50 percent in the next six months. Ask yourself what you can do to make that a reality. Go create a strategy around accomplishing this goal and check-in with you progress every month. Adjust as needed.
2) Find tools to make your life easier. Sometimes we forget to research what tools may be available to improve our efficiency and open doors for us along the way. A couple examples of tools you should consider using include cloud services like icloud, One Password, a premium Linkedin account, Hootsuite, and Dropbox. There are many more; I suggest asking your friends what tools they use regularly.
3) Clean up your online presence. This one is huge. You need to accomplish a few things in 2012 regarding your online presence. Own your name / brand on the first, second, and third page of Google, assuring the information out there about you is current and true, add some directory listings and profiles, and make sure everything matches your message and brand. Do this diligently and completely. Mistakes here are costing you clients and joint ventures every month.
Remember to set big goals with small baby action steps. Hold yourself to the larger goals and forget making a resolution to do something, make action plans instead.
Jabez LeBret has authored three books and is a managing partner for Get Noticed Get Found. Over the last nine years he has delivered over 700 keynote addresses in five countries. His main area of expertise is managing Gen Y in the workplace, advanced Facebook strategies, LinkedIn strategies, Google+, SEO, local directory optimization, and online marketing. He recently relocated to Chicago.