You know that feeling when you finally get around to tidying up the top of your desk? You get rid of messy papers, dust and polish everything, add pretty notepads, flowers, or organizers – pretty much everything that makes getting back to work a pleasure.
Then you sit back, admire your Pinterest-perfect work area and think “Oh, yeah! I’ve got this!”
It really doesn’t take that long to accomplish, but oh boy does it feel great when you get it done. You’re excited to get to work, you love what you see, and it’s such a relief to check that task off your list.
Now, let’s take those thoughts and that “polishing up” energy and apply it to your business!
Here are 3 easy ways to tidy up your business and get it ready to start the year strong.
These are all free. And won’t take much time. In fact, I suggest that you fire up your Spotify and put on some tunes to kick up the fun factor even more.
Here we go!
STEP 1: Take a Snapshot of the Past Year
Create a document and record statistics, events, big wins, and other notables in a year-end roundup. Things like:
- Number of newsletter subscribers
- Facebook fans, Twitter followers, LinkedIn connections, etc
- Hits on your website, comments on your blog
- Newsletter open rates
- Products you launched and how well they did
Once you’ve compiled information that is important to you, print it out and put a copy in a file marked for Jan 2018. Save a digital file in the same way on your computer. This is a great way to develop a baseline for checking how well you are doing with your goals and growing your business. You can wait until a year goes by before taking it out to compare with your year-end figures. Or you can pull it out and look at it once in awhile to see how you’re doing, compare stats from last year, and use it to keep you motivated.
Believe me, you’ll love having this information at your fingertips to compare and celebrate your achievements!
STEP 2: Create an Editorial Calendar for the First Quarter
First: Write down 3-5 goals that you would like to accomplish in the next three months. These can be anything from adding subscribers to your newsletter list to launching new products or hosting a live event.
Next: Print out blank calendars for January, February and March. (Here’s a link to the ones I use.) Fill in events, product launches, guest appearances, etc., that have already been scheduled.
Finally: Fill in the calendar with blog article ideas and social media posts that will support your goals and big events. For instance, if you are planning a live event that combines puppies, kittens and business networking (and who wouldn’t want to try that out!) plan some blog articles in the weeks leading up to your event that talk about the connection between pet ownership and running a business. Share social media posts about what to bring, ideas for making the best of this kind of event, photos of cute puppies and kittens, and stories from people who have attended previous events like this.
STEP 3: Do a Quick “check-and-refresh” Everywhere You’re Online
Make a list of all the places people can look you up online and visit each one to quickly scan to make sure all your information is up to date.
Website: Read your homepage, is the information correct and up to date? Be sure to check your Contact Page for old emails or phone numbers if you’ve made changes during the past year. Update your about page with a refreshed bio and new headshots.
Newsletter: Sign up for your newsletter from a different email address and make sure that readers are getting up-to-date information from you. Welcome emails and autoresponders are often forgotten and send out confusing info that no longer pertains to what you are doing. If you haven’t sent anything out in awhile, write a simple note and let your readers know what to expect in the New Year. (I like this idea – called a Promise Letter.)
Social Media: For every social media account you have, be sure to check your Bio, Business Description, and Contact Information.
Blog: Check that your website links correctly to your blog. If you haven’t posted for awhile, write an article that welcomes new readers, thanks loyal fans, and shares your Promise for future posts. Make a commitment to yourself to post regularly in the future, even once a month will help raise your credibility with the Google powers that be.
See? Told you it would be quick and easy. Take these three steps to polish up your business online and you’ll feel refreshed and full of sparkle for your best New Year yet.