Are you a member of HARO, Help a Reporter Out? If not, you should be! It is a site where reporters and media members can connect with regular people to get answers and content for their stories. A LOT of stories that I am seeing recently are those asking for input on 2010’s outlook for the economy. I always reply – It will be GREAT!

Because it will be. 2009 changed the minds (and retirement accounts) of so many hardworking Americans – Americans with a great work ethic, creative minds and big dreams – so many of them started out on their own to begin their own companies. What an amazing thing!

I know in my heart that 2010 will be the year that changes the world – in the economy and in the business industry.

Are you really looking for your business to take off this year? Then, I have some advice for you on must-dos!

You MUST:

  • Have a bonafide social media plan – and this goes beyond Twitter and Facebook. Include YouTube, Linked In and industry-specific sites (for example, for the car industry there is a social networking site called DrivingSales) The plan should include goals (1000 followers every month); deadlines (post interesting info 5 times per week) and more learning (for example, how HootSuite can optimize your Twitter posts for keywords that Google LOVES)
  • Blog! – So many of my clients tell me they are afraid to blog because they don’t know what they will talk about. I tell them: You are an expert, right? Otherwise, why would anyone come to you for (insert service or product here)? Then tell the world about it! Don’t worry, you won’t be giving away any top “secrets” — you will just be generating more income for yourself!
  • Outsource: Business owners spend way too much time doing stuff that they don’t want to do — bookkeeping, answering emails, scheduling calls, keeping track of calendars, making Facebook posts, responding to RFPS — and not enough time doing the things that they love to do that made them start the business in the first place. Find a great outsourcing firm and start today!
  • Be Seen: Submit media releases. Submit feature story ideas to the newspapers. Tweet 10 times a day. Attend 2 social networking events a month. It is critical to increase your visibility in your market!