2016 is finally here and everyone has probably made personal resolutions for themselves, myself included. However, as marketing trends continue to change, we should all think about making some marketing resolutions, as well! Here are a few #MarketingResolutions to get you started on the right foot this year:

Clean Data

Clean data should be a top priority for 2016 and it’s important to not just think about it on a yearly basis; we should be thinking about ways and tools to clean data on a quarterly basis. If you consider the money you spend on your marketing automation platform, creative staff, content, software, etc – it is A LOT. If you don’t have accurate and in depth contact records it is nearly impossible to 1) target content at certain audiences 2) have a deep segmentation strategy and 3) have your messages actually reach the intended recipient. It all starts with having clean data, everything else is just a pointless expenditure without it.

It doesn’t stop at clean data either – once it’s clean, layer on more data like skills, interests, behavior, etc. Having an abundance of accurate data points on each contact, allows for improved personalization tactics that will ultimately help conversion rates.  This leads to my next resolution.

Be More Human

No one likes talking to a droid, unless you’re from Star Wars and fancy a conversation with C3P0, R2D2 or BB8.  But chances are, you live on Earth and you prefer human interaction.  That being said, have meaningful conversations with your audience.  Don’t just leave random stats or articles, have a discussion, engage with them, invite them to the conversation! Use that newly cleaned data to create relevant interactions with your audience.  Show them you know them. Have a unique voice specific to your brand and use it to engage with people.  This casual conversation builds a relationship of trust that will benefit your company in the long run. The kicker? It takes time to build a relationship, so start now!

Reuse and Recycle Content

Don’t make more work for yourself!  Go through what you already have and see what’s relevant and reusable versus what’s irrelevant and disposable. Consider where each piece of content lives and how it was disseminated in the first place – there’s a pretty good chance you still have a large audience that hasn’t yet consumed certain pieces of your content. Look at the content that is still relevant, analyze how successful or unsuccessful it was, then find new and creative ways to strategically reuse that in the coming year.

Embrace Social

This one is huge for me, since I am the Content and SOCIAL MEDIA Manager, so hopefully all of you social media gurus agree with me too.  This coming year, it’s important to utilize social media to share content, knowledge and expertise to a widespread audience.  Find influencers and thought leaders in your industry so you to keep an ear to the newsfeed to find out what’s trending. Find more folks that are in your target audience to learn what they are interested in, what they talk about, and what makes them tick.

Social sourced data is also key to connecting with your audience.  Everyone knows that people can get pretty personal on social media (maybe a little too personal – like that one person who shares every activity they do through out the day…), however sometimes this data can help with personalization strategies!  Where they went to school can help your team pull them in by leveraging some of their school pride.  Appeal to some of the groups that they’ve joined.  There is an endless amount of possibilities. Think segmentation!

Learn New Things

As a marketer, it’s super important to keep up with the recent trends and while social media is one way to do that, don’t let it be your only source of knowledge. There are so many opportunities for us to learn about different things and quite often they slip through our fingers because we’re busy with more important things.  You know those webinar invites you get in your inbox, but scroll over?  Maybe this year you should take the time to open a few and learn something new.  Same goes for workshop invites or marketing articles that come from that blog you subscribed to once upon a time.  You can even take time to chat with colleagues and share ideas.  Maybe share an article you really connected with.  You never know what you might learn! And don’t be afraid to try new things and fail, because in essence, that’s how you learn in the first place… Just don’t make the same mistake twice!

That being said, join me in making these marketing resolutions and make 2016 the most successful year yet!