Monday, January 7, 2019

Resume Writers: Engage Your Audience

One of the best ways of attracting and retaining resume clients is through content.

True audience engagement is essential. Engagement includes getting responses to your social media posts, with real conversations happening. That leads to a relationship with the audience that gets them to do what you want them to, and remain committed afterwards. But that doesn't happen by itself — it happens by design.

Here are some things you should consider:

1. Grow Brand Awareness
The reason you want to grow your brand's awareness is that it will help more people know about you and your offerings. The more people who know, the more chances you have to make them part of your audience. The more audience members you have, the more opportunities you have for audience engagement. 

To grow brand awareness, youĂ­ll want to create content such as white papers, webinars, blog posts and other content that is designed with the goal of brand awareness in mind.

2. Build an Active Community 
The best way to grow and improve engagement is to have more people to engage with in a community environment. When you build an active and vibrant community, engagement will happen more easily because they feel special and part of a group or tribe. 

A great way to build an active community today is through Facebook Groups. You'll need content for your community too, such as memes, challenges, infographics, and more. (Bronze members of BeAResumeWriter, check out the 100 More Social Media Conversation Starters on the download page.)

3. Drive Traffic to Your Website
You'll want to work on driving traffic to your website because the point of engagement is to get traffic to your website, and then get your visitors and hungry buyers to sign up for your email list so that you can engage with them in new ways. You can use your community and the content that you use to build brand awareness to help you drive traffic to your site. 

4. Generate Leads and Sales
As you grow brand awareness, build an active community, and drive traffic to your site, part of the point of engagement is to generate leads and sales. You can then have engagement with your prospects and customers. 

When you set these four goals, remember that they're only goals. You will also need to develop a strategy that allows you to approach these goals, with measurable objectives and tactics that increase your chances of succeeding. 

Thursday, January 3, 2019

Goal-Setting (Part III): How Do You Get There?

In yesterday's blog post, I talked about how to decide where you're going — setting the goal or goals you want to achieve.

Once you know where you want to go, you can chart the course for how to get there.

So the next step after setting a goal is to create a series of steps you need to take to accomplish the goal. 

There’s that saying: How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time. When I get stuck on how to approach a goal, I make a list of all the tasks I need to take to get it done. Then I work on one. If I’m really stuck, I set a timer on my phone for 15 minutes, and I commit to working on a task until the timer goes off. Sometimes that’s enough to get me out of inaction.

As I mentioned in yesterday's blog post, it is a really important part of the process to actually write things down. It requires a lot of effort and energy to try to remember what you need to do. You also have to spend time thinking about what you need to do next. When you write things down, it makes it easier to figure out where to spend your time. Also prioritize the list. Designate what to do first, and next, and next. That will help you move from task to task quickly, because you know what’s next on your list.

The other important piece is the “T” in “SMART” — putting a deadline on your goal. To turn a goal into reality, you need to know what you have to do on a monthly, weekly — or even daily — basis to make it happen. And you can’t do that unless you have a time frame for when you want to accomplish your goal. You start at the end, and figure out what it will take to get there.

One of the goals I gave as an example yesterday was "I will pay off $6,000 in credit card debt by Dec. 31, 2019."

That means you need to pay off $500 a month in principal to wipe out your entire credit card debt over the course of a year. Making a $500 payment each month sounds more manageable than tackling an entire sum.

But you can break it down even further. Five hundred dollars a month is $115 a week, or $16.50 a day. Once you have a goal and a timeline, you can take the appropriate action to make it happen. 

You could pick up a little extra work each month to make your $500 a month goal. Or cut your expenses by $16.50 a day and allocate the savings to debt reduction. 

But having a goal and action steps in place makes it much more likely that you will reach your goal than hoping that there is extra money at the end of each month to throw towards your credit card. And, if you have a plan for your money, you’re more likely to reach your goal of paying off your credit card because you know exactly what you want to do with that extra money you earned, or saved, or both.

So take a few minutes right now and write down the series of action steps you need to take for each of the goals you defined from yesterday's "homework" assignment.

Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Goal-Setting (Part II): Where Are You Going?

In hockey, it's easy to measure your accomplishments. The scoreboard reflects your success.
Photo credit: UNO Libraries' Archives and Special Collections

In yesterday's blog post, I talked about the importance of reflection in goal-setting.

Today, we're going to talk about intentions, which are a critical component in setting goals. 

Goals give us focus and direction. A goal is a statement of intention — about what you want, what you plan to focus on, and what you intend to accomplish. Choosing a goal gives you a destination to choose a path for. Only when you know where you are going can you decide how to get there. Goals get you into action, keep you on track, and allow you to measure your progress.

You're probably already familiar with the S.M.A.R.T. system for goal-setting. 

S.M.A.R.T. is an acronym for:

When creating your S.M.A.R.T. goals, use the present tense. See yourself achieving the goal. 

"I will create and launch a new signature system for jobseekers by January 31, 2019."
"I will earn $96,000 in revenue in 2019."
"I will pay off $6,000 in credit card debt by December 31, 2019."

Beyond setting the goals is making them a reality. It's one thing to write down a goal. It's another to look back a year from now and see what you've accomplished.

But writing down the goal is important. You're 42% (or 47%) more likely to achieve a goal that you write down. (I found both numbers in my research — either way, that's a lot!)

So take a few minutes — RIGHT NOW — and write down between two and four S.M.A.R.T. goals you hope to accomplish this year.

Read Part 3 here: “Goal-Setting (Part III): How Do You Get There?”

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Goal-Setting (Part I): Where Have You Been?

Goal-setting is one of the most important activities you can do to be successful. The start of a new year is a natural time to stop and take stock of where you want to go. To start 2019, I'm going to create a series of blog posts that will give you an opportunity to look back at the past year, figure out where you are now, and also determine your direction for the new year.

Today's post is about REFLECTION.

Goal setting isn't just about looking forward. It's also about learning.

In 2018, what was your biggest disappointment or regret? This one might take a minute to come up with — or it may spring right to your mind. Was there a project you didn’t finish? Something you wanted to get done in your business that you didn’t? Or how you handled a particular client or opportunity?

Did you have plans for yourself in 2018 that weren't realized?

Were there things that you wanted to accomplish this year that you didn’t get one? What was the reason — or reasons — you didn’t get it done?

Did other priorities and activities distract you?
Did you forget to work on it? 
Did you give up because it was too difficult to accomplish?
Was your “WHY” not big enough?

That last one is important. Your motivation for wanting to accomplish something is vital to you achieving your goal. This is sometimes called “Your Big Why.” Do you remember why you wanted to do this? If you don’t know that, you’re going to have a hard time achieving your goal because your motivation needs to be big enough to overcome the resistance that you’re going to face as you work toward your goal.

Change can be great — but it’s also intimidating (even scary!) and difficult. If you don’t have a big enough why driving you, it’s easy to do the stuff that’s more familiar and predictable. It can be very useful to look at why you didn’t achieve your goals — and figure out what you can do differently.

For example, if you want to stop smoking, you may have a great WHY behind the goal, but you probably also have a reason that you’ve been unsuccessful in achieving this goal previously. Maybe you have friends — or a spouse — who still smokes. Or maybe you’re afraid about gaining weight if you give up smoking. Recognizing the obstacles that have stopped you before will help you be more successful this time around.

But I don’t want to get too caught up in the past. This is about creating the future you want, becoming the person you want to be, and finishing things you’ve never been able to finish before. But the more motivated you are to achieve your goals, the more likely you are to achieve them — because motivation gives a lot of fuel to the fire.

That's step one.

Happy New Year!

Read part two here: “Goal-Setting (Part II): Where Are You Going?”