It’s time to start prioritizing your 2019 business marketing plans. First think about how successful your business was: did you meet your annual goals? What can you do this year to make it better? ​As marketing strategies have evolved in these past few years; sometimes it’s hard to keep up or know where to start.

Luckily, with the help of this article, we will be sharing with you some brilliant marketing and advertising ways to give your business a head start in generating more leads and sales for the upcoming year. 

1) Get Social on Social Media

Social media is definitely a great way to promote your business in our generation. We’d hope in 2018, you already got that point and have a few pages set up. If you don’t, now’s the chance to get at least 2 to 3 pages up and running. Depending on your business, it will depend on which social media platform will be right for you.

Social media is based on an audience aka a following, but most importantly, a loyal and engaged following. If you’re looking to build your social media following, consider doing the following:

  1. Pushing your handles – A great way to build your following is to continuously promote your social media handles. So if you’re speaking at a conference, don’t be afraid to add your handles on your presentation slides. Have business cards? Make sure you include your handles. There’s no shame or harm in doing so. 
  2. Join in on weekly hashtag themes like #FlashbackFriday – If you want to grow your social media following and create an engaged community, you need to participate in one! This means posting regularly, using specific and popular hashtags related to your content and engaging with your audience. 
  3. Spy on your competitors – We all do it, there is nothing bad about doing this. In fact, it helps you understand what you’re competing with and what they are doing differently to get their audience engaged.

2) Start Promoting Your Business by Hosting Contests

Everyone loves to receive free things; especially when it’s expensive and there’s a high chance you can win something. Hosting contests can widen your audience in a short period of time. The following are a few contests ideas to get you started:

  1. Photo Contests – Photo contests are the easiest and they can provide sponsors with an excellent form of user-generated content that can be implemented and reused elsewhere.
  2. Video Contests – Aren’t as popular as photo contests but you’re likely to get a higher quality of content since creating a video requires a bit more effort on the user’s part.
  3. Caption Contests – Post an image and ask your followers to submit their best caption – this type of contest is creative, fun and can get some pretty great laughs.

To make sure your contest actually works and people are entering, some ways are:

  • Using hashtags that are relevant to your contest. You should also think of a specific hashtag for your contest that your following will use when entering. This is a way to easily keep track of who entered in one place.
  • Make sure you are making your contests super shareable. This means to make sure you are including “sharing your contest” buttons if you have an entry form on a website or encouraging social sharing in general.
  • Include bonus entries as an option. In other words, users will get bonus entries if they start following you or share on their social media.
  • Make sure you are promoting your contest on all of your social media handles. After all, the more the merrier, right?

3) Content is Everything

While having a social media and online presence is necessary, having great consistent content is everything. You can’t expect a following or any engagement on your page if your content is not appealing. So what should you do?

  1. Understand your Audience – The best pieces of content are ones that are directed towards your key audience. Understand your customer: know what they want and needs. Figure out what makes them psyched and what they don’t like. Keep track of the time they are the most online and when their least. Many social media apps provide analytics for you to use to keep track of times to post.
  2. Always Include Visual Elements – We are living in a world where most of us rather look at pictures than to read a novel of words. Make sure you are adding visually appealing content that is relevant to your content pieces.
  3. Include Infographics – We love visual content and infographics are a prime example of beloved, linkable visual elements.