Welcome to 2018! I’m not terribly sad to leave 2017 behind. I’ve made New Year’s resolutions – and even content marketing resolutions. While my content marketing resolutions are far different from yours (and we won’t even talk about my personal resolutions!), if you’re running with any kind of content marketing initiative, it’s worth it to check in and shake things up in 2018. Let’s make this the best year for our content marketing ever with these five actions you can take today.

Conduct a Content Audit

Your first content marketing resolution is almost like a spring cleaning, except you probably won’t throw anything away. Go through your existing content: your website copy and blog, white papers, case studies, infographics, e-books – anything you use as lead generation, demand generation, or throughout the sales cycle is fair game. Then ask yourself:

Update Your Editorial Calendar

If your editorial calendar is languishing as an Excel spreadsheet, it’s time to first update what you’re sharing with your team. Google Sheets is a simple way to collaborate on editorial calendars; if you want to go with something more high-tech and comprehensive, you have your choice. (The Intelligent Content Conference in Las Vegas from March 20-22, 2018 can help you navigate through some of your options.)

Next, take a look at your themes, posts, and assets:

  • What did you plan last year?
  • What was executed successfully?
  • Where did you publish? Where will you publish?
  • Who will write, edit, and post?
  • What products are being released?

Meet with Sales

The sales team should be your best friend by now. If you’re not meeting with some of the top sellers in your company on a regular basis, make 2018 the year you pick their brains over lunch. Find out what assets they use to move prospects through the sales funnel, what works best, and what they ignore. Talk to them about the customers’ pressing problems. Ask them what you, as marketers, can do to create sales enablement content that will help them do their jobs. It may not be the most fun you’ve had during a meeting, but I guarantee that you will come away with valuable information that you can use immediately.

Review 2017 Content Marketing KPIs, and Set New KPIs for 2018

If you had KPIs for last year – views, clicks, downloads, form submissions – review how well they worked. (This is also part of your content audit and editorial calendar review.) Once you’ve done that, the next part of your content marketing resolution is to set new KPIs. Maybe the ones you’ve been using aren’t demonstrating real ROI, or they don’t accurately reflect how well the content is performing. Consider new methods of measuring content marketing success, then define the metrics you want to hit.

Evaluate Freelancer Needs

Yes, this is a little self-serving. But take a good look at your marketing team. Now that you’ve decided what you want to do, content-wise, you might need a little help from some freelance friends. If you’re reading this blog post and need someone to write white papers, case studies, blog posts, or feature articles for a B2B technology product, particularly ERP, CRM, or most SaaS products, head on over to my contact form and give me a holler. We’ll figure out if I’m the right copywriter for you. (And here’s why I wouldn’t be.)

If I’m not the right person, I work with a network of amazing B2B writers, and I’ll direct you to them.

All right, now that we’ve got our content marketing resolutions set, get ready to have a year full of marketing success!