You don’t need us to tell you that a good start to the year is essential for any business.
If you get off to a slow start, you’ll inevitably be playing catch up for the rest of the year – not what you want!
In this blog, we’ll cover the 4 key reasons why Q1 is so critical to business growth and success, helping you to make better decisions, hit the ground running and make the most out of the calendar year.
Reason 1: People are more receptive to change in January
Employees are generally more receptive to important organisational changes and strategic shifts at the start of the year.
Early January is a time of change for many, especially with people who set resolutions; it’s a time where we’ll accept doing things differently.
It’s important that, when enacting change, you celebrate the individuals who are helping make it happen. Publicly celebrate wins and ensure employees are held accountable.
This is the single best month to change – don’t waste it!
Reason 2: It’s a great opportunity to open a discussion about KPIs
January is a great time to talk with your team about their performance.
It’s recommended that you assign one key performance indicator (KPI) to each person, making them responsible for delivery. Team members are more receptive to accepting changing KPIs in January, again as it’s an expected time of change.
You should also establish how KPIs will be measured and reported (you don’t want reporting to take time away from their job role, after all!).
KPIs you may choose to establish are:
- % of leads converted into sales
- % of quotes converted into sales
- % of sales of new products/services
- % of sales from new customers/clients
- Average value of sale
- % of positions filled
- % of perfect deliveries (on time)
Of course, this will depend on your industry and the individual’s job role.
It’s essential that you ensure all KPIs are measurable, attainable and benchmarked against industry norms. We also recommend setting yourself a KPI and holding yourself accountable, too!
Reason 3: It’s the perfect time to set the tone for the rest of the year
Q1 benchmarks impact your entire year; it’s really important to set the right standards now, as this will set the tone, both strategically and psychologically, for your people.
Getting this right will establish a rhythm that your employees will carry through the rest of the year.
Expectations are set, routines are adopted and critical goals are established. A positive start usually results in a positive year. Remember: this is a marathon, not a sprint. Ensure everyone has what they need, but instruct them to pace themselves – burnout isn’t fun for anyone!
Reason 4: Q1 provides marketing data for the rest of the year
Marketing your business without data is like throwing darts blindfolded.
Sure, you might hit the bullseye on occasion, but you’ll also send a few darts flying into the wall.
Your marketing process in Q1 will help establish what your audience are resonating with, and what they’re not responding to.
You’ll want to note:
- Email open rates
- Clickthrough rates
- Website bounce rates
- Form fills
- Conversion rates
- Social metrics (engagement, followership, etc.)
Keep a close eye on your marketing and adjust accordingly. Don’t waste time or budget on strategies that aren’t working, and ensure that data is used as evidence for all of your marketing or sales efforts.
It’s time to smash your Q1 marketing
Need help smashing your Q1 marketing and beyond? You need to talk to our commercially-focused marketing team at Catalyst.
Our team of strategists, writers, designers and marketing experts will become an extension of your team; consider us your own boutique marketing team. We’ll help form a strategy, test it, analyse results and help you see success well into the future.
Let’s talk about your needs. Click the link below to get in touch.