Plan, review, add, update, enhance, look, measure, test, all action words. Take action with your marketing in 2010 with Inspired 2 Design's 2010 marketing checklist Welcoming in the new year with some marketing ideas for small businesses to add to their "To Do lists". These 10 ideas aren't wishes, they're requirements for growth in the new year of 2010. Use this list as a checklist for you to accomplish, and challenge yourself to add even more great ways to market yourself. Here is Inspired 2 Design's 10-4-10 Marketing Checklist: 1. Revisit your marketing plan and strategy. The past two years have been an economic challenge for most small businesses, hence the need for some adjustments and tweaks to your marketing plan is most likely warranted. See what's worked and what hasn't and get rid or, or adjust, the losers. See what is working and how you can maximize the benefits there. See what's new out there that you haven't tried yet (if appropriate of course!) 2. Optimize your website for search engines. PLEASE. This should be number 1, but it is a definite must-do for 2010, especially if you have a geographic zone or service area that you're limited to or assigned to. Search engine optimization (or SEO) is critical. 3. Google yourself in many ways. 1. Google search your company's keyphrases and see where you rank. Google your name and see what comes up in the results. Google your company name and see who is talking about you. 2. Set up Google alerts to automatically find out when you've been referenced or indexed. Monitoring your buzz is the only way to keep a watchful eye on the good and bad comments your business receives. You can't make an attempt to please an unhappy customer if you aren't aware they are unhappy. 4. People are talking behind your back, so you better get on the Social Media Marketing bandwagon. Even if you just add a LinkedIn account, develop your profile and link up with a handful of contacts and associates - past and present - you'll be ahead. That's a minimum add to the wish list this year. Be sure to read up on social media and what not to do as much as what to do. Or call us, we'll be happy to help you develop a social media plan. 5. Publish useful, relevant content that the educated consumer wants, needs, and can find and find helpful. More and more people are researching purchasing decisions online. Your product or service has to be present to win - there's just no two ways about that. And publish often. Your website is hungry for updated, relevant information, and so are your customers and prospects. 6. Look at what you've already got, and find a way to keep it. Your current customers will provide you with 80% of your business in most cases. There is real value in continuing to exceed their expectations in some way with your product, service, or offers. Don't spend all your time seeking new clients; treat those you have with the utmost respect and care! 7. Get out from behind the desk, get off of the chair, and go meet people. Whether it's your city or county's Chamber of Commerce, Optimist or Rotary club, or a small local networking group, find other like-minded individuals and make connections, build relationships and grow your business in 2010. 8. Test something new in Advertising. Again TEST. Whether it's changing from a magazine ad monthly to a daily or weekly newspaper ad, or simply altering the message or offer, you need to test market before making long-term and costly commitments. Test using the least expensive means available, and be sure to make sure the testing is fair and balanced or you'll just be fooling yourself and your wallet. 9. Add some Public Relations to your marketing mix if you haven't already done so. Drafting and sending a press release out for accomplishments, events, new hires, and other positive news is a great way to get free advertising that sounds newsworthy. 10. Look again before you leap. Measure, track, evaluate, adjust. That's how you save money, and make your marketing budget go further for your business. Always measure the results of a campaign, ad, coupon, website update, email campaign, etc. to ensure you're getting the best bang for the buck. Just 10 to start with, but these ideas should keep many a small business owner busy for a while... at least until the second quarter! If you have questions or need help, call I2D at 770-781-3452 - we're happy to help small businesses with their marketing in the Atlanta area or anywhere in the U.S.