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Each year we set out some goals for ourselves and figure out what will make NorthIQ the business we ultimately want it to become. We want NorthIQ to be a small company, we’re targeting a total size of 10 employees. We want to do good work that we enjoy. We want to work with clients who we like. We want to provide ludicrous value to our clients. We want to make a difference at our client companies.

In 2018 we want to grow significantly, doubling our staff size will allow us to support our clients better, and will help us to grow without becoming too big. In order to double staff, we’ll need to double our revenue as well, so in 2018 we’re going to pay close attention to our revenue month over month, and make sure that we’re growing smart.

Here’s our overall goals in 2018:

  • Double Revenue in 2018
  • Market our services better
  • Continue with Content Marketing
  • Support Manage Comics
  • Hire two employees in 2018
  • Create the NorthIQ Values and Beliefs Document
  • Productize and Streamline our business

Double Revenue in 2018 – We did a great job in 2017, but we came up a little bit short in the end, finishing with a strong 48% growth, 2% off our target.

Double revenue will allow us to hire two people in 2018, and invest in a small office or shared office space.

Market our Services Better – We know that we are a marketing company, but our unique value proposition is that we’re obsessed with increasing our client’s revenue, and to that end, we will not do work if we don’t think it will make a difference to the bottom line.  We know this makes us different than other marketing companies, and this is the thing we need to focus on marketing about ourselves. When you add the vast technical skill that Craig and I possess, as well as our creative skill at execution, we’re in a unique place in the market.

Continue with Content Marketing – Content marketing is the single best thing that we did in 2017. We went all in on blog posting, with 48 blog posts in 52 weeks, we posted on Manage Comics, and we’ve posted some videos.  In all cases, we have seen increases in business from the content we post.

Manage Comics Support – Manage Comics is getting traction, now we need to support it. One of our hires this year will be a support person for Manage Comics (we need to hit 30 monthly subscriptions to make this a reality), we will also need to support Manage Comics with help documentation, webinars, and more advertising to hit our goals (30 stores by the end of March, and 50 stores by the end of July).

Hire two employees in 2018 – As we continue to grow, we need to support our company. We’ll know if we can hire by the end of March, and if we continue on the trajectory we’re on, this will be no problem.

Create the NorthIQ Values and Beliefs Document – Before we go adding a bunch of employees to the company, we need to make sure that we’re building the right corporation.  To that end, we’re going to write a Values and Beliefs document to understand what NorthIQ is really about.  Value #3 – Provide Ludicrous Value.

Productize and Streamline our business – We’re working with Amy at Endgrain Industries to put processes in place for our business.  This will make everything we do smoother and make it repeatable.  Of all the things we’re working on this year, this one excites me the most.

Measurable Goals for Q1 2018

All of this talk is great, but without real goals, there is no way we can do this.  Here’s our Q1 (January – March) goals for NorthIQ.

  • By end of March 2018, show an increase of 70% over the same time period in March 2017
  • Achieve 2018 Content Marketing Goals
  • By February 15th, post our UVP and positioning statements to NorthIQ
  • By February 1, 2018, begin regular (monthly) Manage Comics emails going out. – In Progress
  • By February 1, 2018, Create help documents for Manage Comics – In Progress
  • By February 1, 2018, Set up a regular webinar for Manage Comics – done
  • By February 1, 2018 Begin to Advertise Manage Comics – done
  • By February 28th, 2018 have V1 of our process documents complete
  • By February 28th, 2018 have V1 of our values document complete
  • By April 1, 2018, begin hiring process for employee #1
  • January 2, 2018, begin looking for office space – In progress
  • By July 1, 2018, begin hiring process for employee #2

Be consistent with Content Marketing

Content Marketing has been very successful for us, and we feel that with more dedication, we’ll see even better results in 2018. We need to settle on a date for blog posts, and make sure we can write them out in advance, but I’m confident we can hit these marks.

  • 52 Blog Posts for NorthIQ – 4 down in the first 4 weeks!
  • 26 Blog Posts for Manage Comics – 3 complete, 2 in review
  • 12 Case Studies for NorthIQ
  • 12 Video Posts for NorthIQ – 1 complete, welcome Hot Buzz!
  • Full Help Documentation for Manage Comics with Video Screencasts

We will be reviewing this in April 2018 with a follow up blog post on how we’ve done so far, make sure you follow along with us.

We think that by focusing on creating great content, building processes around what we do, supporting our work, and delivering ludicrous value to our clients, we can make NorthIQ the kind of business we want it to be.

What are you putting in place to build on your business in 2018?

Brian Garside has been building websites for two decades and has worked on some of the largest websites in Canadian media. He focuses on creating good user experiences and building websites that make their owners money. Brian is certified in blogging and content marketing from Shaw Academy.