Challenges are all the rage these days.  There was the Ice Bucket Challenge, there is the Whole 30 Diet craze and even multiple challenges on Facebook where you post your favorite albums every day for 30 days or post a moment of gratitude every day for 30 days.

Which got me thinking…. Why couldn’t we apply the fun and benefits of a 30-day challenge to our own daily sales (or marketing) lives?

Who’s with me?

So here are a few I came up with to try:

The Social Media Challenge. This one is aimed at any of you regardless of your use of social media when it comes to your customers, but especially for those who up until this point have been skeptical about using social to engage with clients and prospects. So here is what you are going to do. If you do not have an established presence on Linked In and Twitter, get one. And once you do, just commit to spending a small amount of time every business day for 30 days interacting. Link up with old colleagues on LinkedIn.  Follow customers on Twitter. Join a group.  Re-Tweet a really cool article you read that you think your customers would find valuable. Bonus points if you come back here and tell us how it went after the 30 days are over.  You are aiming to increase followers, contacts on LinkedIn, and use your personal pages to boost the messages that your company is sending out via social.  Because someone at your company is messaging on social, right?  RIGHT?

The “Expand your Horizons” Challenge. There is a lot of new stuff happening in our industry and peripheral industries.  Marketing is in the midst of massive alterations and companies are constantly changing how they get their customers attention.  It’s in your best interests to know and be able to discuss intelligently that which is important to your clients and prospects. So, every business day for a month, I want you to learn something new.  Don’t know a whole ton about Augmented Reality?  Get to Googling, my friend.  Not sure what a Facebook algorithm is?  Phone a friend.  The More You Know.

An Appreciation Challenge. Every human likes to be acknowledged. Your colleagues, vendors, and customers are no exception.  So, for every business day in the next 30, take some time to express your gratitude for the people in your life who help you do what you do.  Some people you can include: delivery drivers, pressmen, desktop operators, accounting, customer service, estimating and managers.  Now on to the customers.  Of course, your biggest ones deserve recognition, but maybe you could also include some prospects, and even some of your smaller accounts that you feel might be going more unnoticed.  Even consider a fellow salesperson or (gasp) even a friendly competitor who once helped you out of a jam with a piece of information or a roll of paper.

Some challenges lately might have felt frivolous or not worth the time spent on them.  Others, like the Ice Bucket Challenge, have made a real difference for ALS and its research efforts.  These challenges will without a doubt make some sort of change in your life.  And it for the good.  Have fun with it and PLEASE come back here and let us know how it went.  There’s a free hour of coaching in it for one lucky winner who comments here.

See more posts from Kelly

Listen to Kelly’s Podcast From The Printerverse: Strategies for Sales Success with Bill Farquharson and Kelly Mallozzi

KellyMallozzi_PrintMediaCentrAs a sales and marketing coach and consultant at Success In Print, Kelly Mallozzi advocates for graphic arts companies to start a revolution and fight to keep print relevant.  She may be irreverent, but what she lacks in convention, she makes up for in smart-assery.

Connect With Kelly: Twitter @SuccessInPrint and check out her weekly blog on Printing Impressions.

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