Something about the New Year makes us want to start fresh. We reach for the clean slate and make new plans. In order to make the most of this exciting time of the year, there are a few steps to take online that will set you up to make the most of your 2014 plans.
Most brands have many rogue pages living online. These pages may have been created by well-intending staff members but were later abandoned, or they may have been created by customers checking in to your location. Either way, it’s time that you claim them as your own. This gives you the ability to merge it with your current page if it is a duplicate, or you can keep the page instead of starting from scratch if you don’t have a page on that platform yet.
2. Google yourself: The first thing people do when they hear your name or company name is Google it! We all do it, but do you know what comes up in the search results? Give it a try!
3. Do a source search: Knowing what’s already popular on Pinterest can really steer you in a direction that will help you get more exposure. A favorite tool for this is to see what people are already pinning from your site.
4. Check search inquiries: Similar to a Source Search on Pinterest, this search tells you what people are searching for on your site. If there is a popular search that you don’t have content for, it is the perfect opportunity to create popular content and to rank higher on Google.
5. Do a keyword search: Knowing what people are searching for helps you pinpoint your content strategy. The simplest way to do this is to access Google’s Keyword Tool and look for keywords and phrases with a high amount of searches and low competition.
6. Look at your open rates: Check out what has been popular content from your email marketing efforts.
7. Know your analytics: Google has a suite of helpful tools for small businesses. One of these tools is Google Analytics. This shows how many people visit your site, where they come from before they get to there, and what they do on your site—all very helpful information for developing your online strategy.
8. Check review sites: There are many review sites out there; the most common being Yelp!, TripAdvisor and Urbanspoon. Take a look at those sites to see what people are saying. It’s likely there are positive and negative reviews. The negative reviews are a great way to find areas to improve for the new year.
9. Do a related search: This one is fun! It’s always helpful to know what your competitors are (and aren’t) doing. Pull up a Google search page and type related:[yoursite].com (e.g., related:padronsocialmarketing.com). When you click search, Google will pull up pages that are similar to yours.
10. List influencers: Influencers are powerful. These are people who are already in front of your target market and they're spending hours a day online. What blogs, websites, thought leaders, brands, local pages and celebrities are already followed by your audience? These are influencers for your brand! The action step is to put them on a Twitter list and a Facebook list so that it is simple to engage with them frequently.
11. Invite email subscribers: It’s no surprise that I love email, and it’s still very powerful. People on your list have already raised their hand to say that they love your brand and they want to hear more! Fan gating content on your Facebook page and inviting your email subscribers to get the content will no doubt increase your Facebook fans with quality prospects.
12. Set up monitoring: Every day there are millions of tweets and posts going non-stop. In your Hootsuite account, add a panel that searches for your keywords. Include your name, your company name and relevant industry keywords. This will help you know what people are saying about your industry and brand.
13. Search tweet chats: Tweet chats are a wonderful way to connect with like-minded influencers. This opens the door to partnerships and gets you in front of their audience too.
14. Subscribe to Alerts: Another option in Google’s suite of business tools is Google Alerts. When you sign up for this, Google will send you an email whenever there is an article for a specific topic. I like to set Google Alerts for my name, company name, “Call for Speakers” and industry trends.
What’s one thing you will do to get your ducks in a row?