There’s a lot I could say about the year 2020, but I think it can be summed up in one: wow.
Despite the past 12 months being a year (or 12 years wrapped up into 12 short months – you decide), this year actually brought a lot of great things to many online business owners. So many people I know and love had their best years ever this year. Some pivoted to a different niche and better serve their audience. Some realized even more how much they truly love what they do.
Regardless of how your year went, it’s time again to start looking forward with hope and excitement toward a fresh start. I decided to reach out to 12 more incredible females doing truly amazing things in their niches to get their expert advice on what we should focus on in the main areas of business to help us both set and achieve our goals in 2021.
Before I share with you the expert tips, I want to invite you to grab Your Ultimate 2021 Action Plan. This plan includes all of the tips listed below plus bonus content to help you work on each piece of advice, space to brainstorm your goals then break them down by quarter and month, plus a curated collection of resources to help you along the way.
Did I mention it’s totally free?!
What should business owners focus on with their Pinterest marketing?
Fresh Content. In 2021, marketers should be focused on creating fresh content through blogging, video pins, and Pinterest stories! Pinterest stories, introduced in 2020, are a great way to repurpose Instagram Reels (use captions!), past popular content with slideshows, or quick tips. When Pinterest users engage with your stories, they will be fed more of your content in their feed. I love repurposing content from YouTube, Instagram, and blog posts for clients. Additionally, craft creative ways to create video pins with simple animations on still images or incorporate teaser video clips from other social platforms.
What should business owners focus on with their email marketing?
If you’re going to do one thing with your email list this year I 100% suggest that you create a conversion-focused welcome sequence that pitches your key offer(s) in a clear, concise way. Automating the sales portion of your emails allows you to show up more. With this sequence in place you can confidently speak on podcasts, webinars, summits, etc. because you know you already have your sales machine setup and can just concentrate on getting the right customers to it.
What should business owners focus on with their digital products and programs?
Focus on creating and running your programs in a way that feels fun and exciting for YOU. Too often we fall into the trap of thinking we have to do something a certain way because “that’s just how it’s done”. Are you thinking you have to include a Facebook group because all courses have one, even though the idea of a Facebook group feels super draining to you? Does the thought of making slides make your soul shrivel up, but the idea of teaching with a whiteboard makes your heart sing? Consider this your permission slip to do things YOUR way. What’s a wild idea you have about your course that you haven’t put into action? DO THAT. Chances are, that’s the thing that’s going to make you stand out to your audience in a way that invites them to tell allllll their friends about your unique awesomeness.
What should business owners work on with their SEO?
Want to improve your SEO in 2021? The first, first, first step is to make sure you have Google Analytics & Google Search Console set up on your website…even if you don’t want to look at ANY data yet. Google Analytics is how you get the inside scoop about how website visitors are using your website. (Google judges your site on over 200+ factors. A lot of them relate to user experience). Google Search Console is how you can find out how GOOGLE views your website; does it have any errors? Do you have a sitemap submitted? Which keywords are you already showing up in Google for? These free tools help you get a handle on that low-hanging fruit before you dive into a more advanced growth strategy.
What should business owners do on Instagram?
One thing business owners should focus on with Instagram to grow their business in 2021 is to try something new using Instagram video. Maybe it’s a new type of content you’re already creating, maybe it’s a series, or maybe it’s diving headfirst into something like Reels. The key is to not just do it once for the sake of doing it. Stick with it. Challenge yourself. Analyze the results.
How should business owners improve their schedule?
If you’re looking to move the needle in your business, you have to have the time in your schedule to work on needle-moving tasks. But, so often we get caught up on the content creation hamster wheel – constantly being in create mode saps you of your creativity, and it wastes precious time you could be spending on business growing tasks. Your content is an important part of your business, but it’s not your business. The number one thing you can do to grow your business in 2021 is set aside one week each month and batch your content. That leaves 3 weeks out of each month to rest, dream, and GROW!
What should business owners focus on with their copy?
If I could choose just ONE THING to encourage business owners to focus on with their copy, it would be defining and strengthening the FOUNDATIONAL PIECES. I would encourage them to first define their most meaningful message in business before they write a word (or re-write a word!) for an actual page or email. In his book The One Thing, Gary Keller says that we should find and focus on “the ONE thing you can do, such that by doing it, everything else will become easier or better.”
So, if your plans for the New Year include writing or re-writing your website copy, writing sales page copy for your shiny new offer, re-engaging your email list, or even giving more consistent value in your captions on Instagram, it will serve you well to spend some time on the foundation first. What goes into that foundation? Understanding the unique value you (and only you) can bring to the marketplace. And “value” in this sense is where your talents and passion meet your audience’s pain and create potential for transformation. When you dig deep on that first, everything else will flow more easily as a result. We can’t expect to give our audience clarity when we’re dipping into a well of our own confusion. We’ve gotta get clear on our end if we want to serve authentically and without trying to measure up to what everyone else is doing around us.
How would team building help business owners?
Step back into your zone of genius. You’ve probably heard that a ton, but that’s because it’s true. As entrepreneurs, we get accustomed to wearing all the hats… but the truth is that’s not a good look! Organizing your backend, investing in easy-to-use systems, and then bringing on a team will help streamline your growth in a way that may even surprise you!
My #1 tip: slow and steady wins the race. Make sure you do a deep dive into your business and get a clear understanding of who you need to hire to turn your vision into a reality. Take it one step at a time and you will get there!
What should business owners do on social media?
In 2021, the biggest thing you should focus on in order to grow your business through social media is social listening. Listening is one of the best things we can do as business owners. Search through hashtags, browse Facebook groups, use polls & question stickers on Instagram stories, send your audience DMs on Instagram, or refer to Answer The Public to see what people are searching for and needing help with at that given moment. Use the exact words that they use in your content marketing to speak directly to their pain points. You’ll see a higher engagement rate on your content because they’ll feel that you’ve truly spoken to them.
What should business owners focus on with their sales copy?
It’s important to remember that sales pages exist for your CUSTOMER above all else. While they can definitely increase your profits and help you grow your business, they are not just a tool to help you make a lot of money.
Consumers who come to your sales page are seeking information about your offer that helps them make a wise, informed decision. Contrary to what you might have been taught, you don’t need dramatics and pushy emotional content to dominate the page if you want to make a sale. Customers are SMART. They can see right through manipulation and they’ll run for the hills! Authentic storytelling is okay and even necessary (in moderation), but don’t leave out the practical info your readers need to feel safe.
Most business owners forget to share the practical inclusions of their offers, demonstrate what those inclusions actually look like, and provide transparent pricing details. If you want to build trust with your customers and increase your odds of conversion, make sure these critical pieces of information are on your sales page!
How can business owners focus on finances to increase their profies?
If you’re looking to increase your profits in 2021, you need to know your numbers – and not just what you’re bringing in. We’re in a time where business owners like to celebrate five-figure months but we’re not talking about how much it costs to hit a five-figure month or whether or not they’re able to pay themselves consistently, and that directly relates to profit.
When you take the time to get clear on your expenses you can see where you have opportunities to decrease them and increase profits.You should aim to spend no more than 30% of your average monthly revenue on business expenses. So if you bring in $10,000 a month, you don’t want your expenses to exceed $3,000 a month. So, if you’re ready to get clear on your expenses and increase your profit grab my guide to Freedom & Flexibility. This guide will help you take a closer look at your business expenses for the year ahead and be more intentional with how you are spending money in your business so you can increase your profits.
Why should business owners get on video?
Incorporating video in your business up-levels your know, like, and trust factor quickly and it cuts time off your cold audience> to>warm audience to> paid client journey. Over the last 5 years video has grown tremendously on social media and it’s not going anywhere anytime soon. Using video in your business can position you as the go-to person for your services and if you do them consistently you can use video as a high-ticket lead magnet to attract the right clients to your business. I suggest using video, especially live video, weekly (create a weekly live stream show) and during your launches to help with your promotion. People want to see the face behind the brand and the way to do this is by using video in your business.
How can business owners use design to grow their business?
Get graphic – okay, not in that way, but seriously. Analytics are showing everyone right now that people love to see a mix of your face and strong, strategic graphics for your content. Instagram is the perfect example of this.
So don’t get caught up in just talking about your offer(s). Think about how you can create graphics to show them off. Mockups, lists, carousels are all great for Instagram, Pinterest, and Facebook – especially for ads.
Also, don’t forget about your testimonials. A beautiful graphic with catch the attention of potential customers, and they’ll stick around once they’ve read how much your people love your offers.
Wow! Those tips make me feel so excited and confident to set goals and take on 2021!
Grab the Ultimate 2021 Action Plan
If those tips are giving you all of the ideas on what you can work on for your business, be sure to grab Your Ultimate 2021 Action Plan below.
It’s a totally free download that includes all of the expert tips above as well as quick links to bonus content to help you work on each piece of advice, space to brainstorm your goals then break them down by quarter and month, plus a curated collection of resources to help you along the way!