You have often heard it said that it’s important to not only work in your business but on your business. However, this can be easier said than done for busy communications professionals. Of course, you find time to do invoicing, billing and business development but if we’re honest we may neglect those other things that could move your business forward. We know they’re important but they never quite make it to the top of that pesky to-do list. As we approach the end of 2017, we’ve put together a list of 10 things that you can accomplish by year end that will improve your business for the new year.
- Update or refresh your LinkedIn profile. Keeping your profile up to date is a good way to make sure that you get seen by the right people. Make sure that your headline highlights your expertise and entices people to learn more. Check to make sure that your location and industry are up-to-date. Optimize your profile with keywords and phrases that your audience uses. If needed, update your profile photo. Refresh your professional summary. Put key information above the fold. Make sure it is jargon-free and includes details that matter to potential clients.
- If you have a website, update the “about us” section. Our messaging can naturally evolve over time, so review this section to ensure that it aligns with your current branding.
- Write one piece of Cornerstone Content. If potential clients only read one piece of content, what would it say? Cornerstone content is high-value content that draws people to your site and entices them to dig deeper. This content should reflect your business and be extremely well written.
- Update your images. If it’s been more than a year since your last headshot, take time to get new photos. Use this time to update background, cover and website images too. What worked three years ago, may now feel outdated.
- Make an editorial calendar. Create an editorial calendar for yourself. This will help you stay on top of your own content and conversations. Need inspiration? Use one of our social media or content calendar templates. (free to PRO Premium members – login to download).
- Purge your digital files. Hanging onto client files that have long been gone clutters up your digital space and mind. If you just can’t bear to delete, download onto an external hard drive and tuck it away.
- Renew your social engagement. Choose one social media channel to be active on and commit to commenting and engaging with others for 15 minutes each day. We can get so busy with client work that we neglect our own communication strategies.
- Send individual emails to past clients. Demonstrate thought leadership and ensure visibility by emailing past clients with insight on one trend to watch for in 2018. If you have an email list, you can customize this by segment. This allows you to tailor the content and call to action.
- Dump it! Identify one thing that you hate to do and eliminate it. If you hate housework, hire a cleaning service. If billing and invoicing make you twitchy, hire a VA or other service. It's time to stop not forcing yourself to do things that are mentally draining and focus on the strategic things that will drive your business forward. You will gain time and energy when you are not avoiding or complaining about doing something that you hate.
- Stronger together! Team up with one other pro and commit to at least one quarterly chat. Whether you work alone, have a small staff or work with a virtual team, it can be energizing to talk to another boss. You can brainstorm business challenges or share goals and keep one another accountable.
- Bonus Tip: Join Solo PR Pro! Solo PR PRO Premium membership is associated with an increase in hourly rate of more than $9 per hour. With time-saving tips, tools and a supportive membership community, Solo PR Pro will help you improve your business all year long.
Is there anything that you would add to the list? Let us know in the comments or tag us on social media using #solopr!
If PR measurement is on your list for 2018, join Karen Swim and Jennifer Zingsheim Phillips on December 12 at 2 pm Eastern for a webinar: How to Overcome Common PR Measurement Obstacles.