Like it or not, 2017 will be here in the blink of an eye. As you strategize as to how to close out Q4 on the strongest note possible, it is important to think about how marketing and messaging for 2017 fit into your plans. Here are five tried and true topics your company should be blogging about during the fourth quarter (as well as sharing in your marketing emails and across your social media marketing channels):
A lot can happen in 365 days. What was groundbreaking in January can easily become old news by June, let alone December. Synthesizing the year’s events – both those specific to your company as well as those that shaped your industry – demonstrates to prospective (and existing) clients that you are deeply entrenched in the industry and have your finger on the pulse of what matters most.
To increase the relevance of these blog posts, hyperlink to relevant content on your website as well as third-party content and tie these happenings to the impact they had on your company and its clients.
2017 predictions and trends
Positioning your senior leadership as experts is a critical component of branding. It can pave the way for media interviews and speaking engagements as well as build trust among prospective clients, partners and referral sources. As 2016 winds down, it is important to proactively communicate what trends will shape your industry – and impact your clients – in 2017. Use data to frame these insights whenever possible.
Industry milestones from 2016
Perhaps it was a major economic development initiative project that brought jobs into the region. Maybe it was an acquisition that strengthened a major competitor. Whether inventions, innovations, regulations or the like, it is important to demonstrate a deep understanding of the industry milestones that shaped 2016. These insights are helpful to clients and prospects when they are planning for the year ahead, and reinforce your company’s – and leadership’s – position as an expert in the marketplace.
Industry and/or legislative changes that will impact clients during the year ahead
Just as it is important to discuss trends that may shape the year ahead, it is important to note industry or legislative changes that will impact how business is transacted. Whether a new tax filing deadline is coming down the pike for small businesses or clients face a looming compliance deadline pertaining to a new code, you want to demonstrate that you are tuned in to what is happening in the industry and a trusted resource for counsel and/or services to help clients comply with what lays ahead. Changes of this nature are great opportunities to invite other experts from your network to share a guest post on your blog – or participate in a short video interview that can be embedded in your blog post.
Lessons learned from 2016’s successes and misfires
Sometimes things go according to plan and other times they follow an uncharted course. Regardless, there are lessons to be gleaned. As you reflect upon the past year, think about what went well for your company and your industry, and what missteps may have occurred. The lessons learned from both of these scenarios are great fodder for educational blog posts. In some instances, you may be able to weave third-party media coverage or industry insights into these posts – or even share a relevant case study – to illustrate your points and make the concepts easier for your target audiences to understand.
Reflecting upon 2016 is an important component of planning for 2017. As you look to refine your content strategy for the year ahead, ensure your business blog remains up-to-date and that you are seizing the opportunities that both year-end and a new year present to enhance your expert positioning.