What’s your word for 2019? For highly successful marketers it’s intention. With 2019 in full force, the goal for many marketing professionals is to reflect, improve and build upon what’s already been created. This requires focused attention, and the ability to identify clear goals and objectives for the coming year.

In 2019 there will be five huge areas of growth for marketers to take advantage of:

  1. Creating strong influencer marketing strategies
  2. Carefully aligning opportunities with business goals
  3. Predicting consumer’s needs and desires
  4. Selecting the most optimal social media platforms
  5. Improving SEO

How can you tie all five of these into your marketing to effectively and efficiently take your career to the next level? Read on to find out how you can implement these habits and follow in the footsteps of highly successful marketers:

Highly Successful Marketers Create Results-Driven Influencer Strategies

While influencer marketing has been on the scene since as early as 1890, it’s grown tremendously in the last 10 years with the rise of Instagram and YouTube. Brands and businesses are starting to understand the power of including everyday consumers in their marketing. Still, there’s a lot to learn about what makes a successful influencer campaign.

For one, in a 2018 study from influencer platform Linqia, “76% of marketers… [said] that the biggest influencer marketing challenge for 2018 would be determining their campaign ROI.” For influencer campaigns, it’s a good idea to work backward from your desired ROI to your campaign specifics.

Focusing on results first, rather than the influencer or size (number of followers) of the influencer’s community is a clearer way to ensure the end goal is met. Then you can build your campaign around the topics and influencers who will best drive you toward your desired metrics. This will allow you and your team to select an influencer who already achieves, in their own community, the results you desire.

Use this handy guide from Thought Catalog, to get a better understanding of how you can use influencer marketing in this year’s strategy as well as tips on how to create a successful campaign.

Highly Successful Marketers Pick and Choose Opportunities

It can be tempting to say yes to every opportunity that gets floated to your desk. While opportunities may look good on paper, for a stronger marketing strategy comb each one, making sure they align with business goals and will help to elevate the brand.

“I believe that you can achieve better visibility for you and your practice by doing less work, as long as you are ruthlessly committed to spending your time only on those marketing opportunities that align with your business objectives and that put you in front of your target audience, and saying a firm no to the rest,” Meg Charendoff, Marketing Strategist and Principal of CREATE: Communication, shares in The Legal Intelligencer.

Charendoff encourages readers to put opportunities through a checklist. Ensure that they align with where the business would like to go, are the right fit for your target audience, or provide opportunities to expand into a market that is already of interest to the brand. Otherwise, it may be best to share a gracious, thanks but no thanks, to make space for opportunities that are in better alignment with your marketing objectives.

Highly Successful Marketers Listen to Their Audience

Social listening is more important than ever in marketing. Technological advances such as AI, chatbots and voice search are setting a new standard for personalization. In Forbes, Contributor Hall shares a great story about how his daughter, while playing with his Timex watch, prompts it to call grandma Hall. Much to her disappointment, it doesn’t.

Hall’s daughter and consumers today have very similar expectations. Rather than react to consumers, businesses are being expected to act and stay one step ahead of the consumer’s needs and desires. Of the 5 bad habits marketers should drop in 2019, Social Media Today points to the practice of mass emailing random people. “Successful marketing should be concentrated around creating a dialogue between a company and its customers.” Instead, they suggest catering to current subscribers and keeping the focus on re-engaging them.

While Social Media Today is specifically speaking to email marketing, personalizing your entire marketing strategy will do wonders for the community you’ve already built. Track what trends your audience engages with, conversations they’re having, the campaigns that move them, even what functionalities they use. Focusing on the community that has already shown interest is one habit highly successful marketers manage well because these customers are more likely to become advocates for your brand, meaning their trust will create opportunities for you to reach their network as well.

Highly Successful Marketers Minimize Platforms to Maximize on Strategy

With social media talent edging their way into top companies, brands are beginning to see how these online spaces shape and inform their marketing. At the onset of social media, the strategy for businesses was to cast a wide net – creating strategies to reach audiences on every platform.

FOMO (fear of missing out) became a real challenge not just for consumers, but businesses as well, as every company worked to reach every audience on every platform. But over time, business leaders have realized that hunkering down on targeted channels is more effective as social media marketing continues to grow.

“Find the channels that your target audience spends the most time on and craft a strategy to reach them,” Search Engine Watch reports in their seven tips to improve your strategy.

It can be tempting to plan a marketing strategy that includes every major platform because each one targets a different interest or target audience but it will dilute your message and make it much more challenging to attract the right customer. As Search Engine Watch suggests, a better way to improve upon your strategy is to capitalize on the channels that are providing the best returns and are most beneficial to your business.

Why leave creating a blanket strategy in the past? A targeted marketing strategy will open the doors to greater creativity – and a more engaged audience – making for stronger campaigns, clearer objectives, and better ROI.

Highly Successful Marketers Find New Ways to Optimize Content

Look at any marketers toolbox, and you’ll most likely see a strong SEO strategy in their bin. It’s undeniable the power that such platforms as Google, Yahoo!, and Bing have played on growing a business’s social presence. For 2019, the goal is to begin using search engine optimization to drive traffic to groups of content rather than individual keywords or posts.

“Marketers have begun linking content to form clusters around pillars (topics) relating to their category,” writer Curtis Tredway explains. “The pillars are pages which broadly outline a topic.”

This shift in SEO creates a content web, where one string of content is connected to another through a specific long-tail keyword or keyword phrase. That means promoting the latest blog post, or piece of content will make for higher engagement on related pieces as well. It’s just one way to stretch the life of evergreen content and ensure it is being shared among your target audience.

How can you begin to build pillars around your content? Categorize your target audience into more specific niche groups and create content around these communities. “Since [long-tail keywords are] very specific, they allow you to rank highly in search results for popular topics relatively quickly while still gaining ground on head terms.” Hubspot clarifies. Mix this trick into your strategy for improved search results.

Highly successful marketers are incredibly engaged, in tune with the mission of their business and always looking for opportunities to better promote the content they’ve created.

To be more effective and efficient in 2019, build intention into your marketing strategy. That means partnering with brands and influencers who will drive the results you’re looking for, saying no to opportunities that aren’t in alignment with business objectives, using social listening tools to better craft your content, cutting down your channels to the most effective ones, and creating a content web with more improved SEO.

With these 5 strategies, you’ll take your marketing skills to the next level and up the game in your career.