New year, new you! Happy 2018 everyone! I love the new year, it is always refreshing to start anew and take a fresh run at the new year and all the personal opportunities it presents.

But for businesses, the new year brings the same level of opportunity. A new year means a new budget. The beginning of a new year is the perfect time to evaluate where you can get the most bang for your buck and where you should be allocating your resources.

Whether you are trying to improve on a down year or you want to continue the success you had in 2017, there is always worth in reevaluating your marketing budget plan.

Here are some areas you should address in your 2018 marketing game plan.

Facebook Advertising

Want to get yourself noticed? Trying to reach a new audience? Hellbent on expanding your current audience? There is no better (or easier) way than Facebook advertising. At a fraction of what you can spend on Google AdWords, you can create ads on Facebook using its extremely precise segmentation tool that can reach thousands of users. With Facebook’s resources, you can have your ads reach as broad of an audience as anyone located in the United States, to as specialized as any women, age 30-50, who live in a 25-mile radius of Indianapolis with children aged 12-18, and anywhere in between.

Facebook ads can be tailored to accomplish any task you need them to. They can be designed strictly for awareness building, getting people to sign up for your newsletters, getting people to buy your products, getting people to like your page and more. Couple low costs with a variety of different presentation styles like still images, videos, slideshows, carousels, and canvases and you have the freedom to experiment with a variety of different ads to find out what resonates best with your target audience.

Video

With visual media dominating social media the way it is right now, it’s important to consider custom videos in your 2018 marketing budget. The Facebook algorithm is giving tremendous preference to video, especially those of the 15-30 second variety. Video may not be for everyone, but is definitely worth exploring and introducing into your timelines. Recording can be as easy as whipping out your smart phone and hitting record, but if you want to make high-quality video a priority in 2018, make some room in the budget.

Look into purchasing audio and video recording devices to enhance the quality of your in-house video recordings. If you don’t have the time, know-how, or want to do more substantial video, you can outsource video recording to a professional media company or use a video creation tool like Slidely. More long-form videos are also great additions to a website, either in a resource library or on individual landing pages. Depending on what you want to accomplish, your videos can range in topics from product demos, employee profiles, behind the scenes, or whatever you can cook up.

Better Emails

If you just want to send out a presentable email newsletter each month and be done with it, any old email tool will work. But, if you really want to get something out of email marketing, your “any old email tool” may be holding you back. Explore the potential of moving your email to Constant Contact. Most email tools can’t hold a candle the resources, functionality, flexibility, and power afforded to newsletters created using Constant Contact’s builder.

With tools like tagging individuals within lists, Constant Contact is capable of easily doing re-sends of campaigns to people on your lists that didn’t open it the first time around. You can also create auto-responder campaigns (an email series that will automatically send on a scheduled timeline) to select individuals or entire lists to create a constant presence in inboxes without additional work. Constant Contact’s in-depth analytics also allow you to actually learn from the successes and failures of previous campaigns and help you put together the most effective campaigns possible.

Branding

When was the last time you had new business cards designed and printed? Just like your website, your physical branding can become antiquated. Just like your website, it’s easy to tell when your brand has not aged well. A successful business needs to look the part, so spend some time and part of your 2018 marketing budget on yourself.

Don’t just think about small things like business cards, stationery, and envelopes. Think bigger. Does your current logo still hold up in the digital age or is it time for a redesign? Hell, maybe your website is as antiquated as your business cards and ready to enter the 21st Century. Use some of your marketing budget to get feedback from a web design company or a graphic designer to inspire you to consider ideas for improvement both in your digital and physical presence.

Ready to grab 2018 by the horns? We can help you create a plan.

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