Ryan Levander

Investing in Myself, What Worked in 2018, and my Digital Marketing Predictions for 2019

Published on: December 29, 2018
Read Time: 5 minutes

Investing in Myself.

I’ve been investing in myself for a while now.

I’m not sure exactly what year it dates back to, but it’s always just felt like the right thing to do, even before I had my own business.

Now, in having my own business, I invest in myself and my business a lot more. #BusinessExpenseIt

In fact, I even have dedicated employees who’s only thing to do is keep up to date with certain technologies and platforms. And then update me on those changes. (Facebook, like, changes a lot 💁🏼‍♀️)

Digital Marketing is a very fast growing and ever-changing industry. I realize having an agency in this climate and hot tech location like Denver is no small mountain to climb (but I’ve climbed a lot of mountains…figuratively and literally).

Winter Summit of Mount Quandary – drinking beer with Mountain Goat in Background.

I’m looking to really scale things up (in the right way and context) and want to help a lot more people in 2019. I’m really excited about it.

I have been in the Digital Marketing world (seriously) for less than 5 years. That doesn’t seem like a long time. In the Digital Marketing world – if you are serious, that is an eternity.

If I had to say the greatest thing that attributed my success and how I got to where I am today, it is by investing in myself – through education, courses, paid masterminds, conferences, taking on new projects, listening to new podcasts, and always being proactive in keeping up with the industry’s latest and greatest via my Feedly news RSS customizer.

Investing in myself started off small by purchasing a lynda.com membership (now owned by LinkedIn and what is now LinkedIn Learning) for $30 a month (for me back then was a lot of money to invest)

Lynda back in the day!

I spent a ton of time watching videos and learning the basics, to intermediate, to advanced techniques in all areas of Digital Marketing – more specifically: Onsite and Off-Site SEO, PHP Web Development, Video Editing with Premiere Pro, and many, many more.

To give you some context, this year I invested almost 32% of my annual earnings back into myself and my business. This has made me roughly 148% back on my return – and I know it will more than 10x the ROI in 2019.

I’m not saying everyone should invest this much (some may invest more), but I am saying that everyone should have a budget each month in which they invest a percentage of their earnings back into themselves for future professional growth. If not, then one should not complain about their salary…

…we live in the greatest economy and free market in the world. With all the tools, technology, and advantages we have nowadays, there is really no excuse not to do all you can.

I never want to be looking at the short term and always invest in things that will have a long-term return on my investment.

Always playing the long game, like a Marathon.

What Worked in 2018 and Trend Predictions for 2019.

  • Measurement Marketing
    • Probably the biggest word for myself and my business since starting it. “Know your numbers, trust your numbers, grow your numbers.” This the core of everything that Elevated Conversions does now.
  • Paid Advertising
    • This isn’t going anywhere anytime soon – as I transition into doing this more for clients in 2019, I will post articles on best practices, etc.
  • Messenger Marketing
    • 1 to 1 instead of 1 to many. I’m not saying Email Marketing is going away anytime soon – but Messenger Marketing is clearly here to stay. Read my post on the Messenger Marketing Conference I went to back in September for more specifics on this.
  • Omni Channel Marketing
    • Yes, Facebook Ads work really well. But to think that you can simply run Facebook Ads alone and you will catch all your target customers is naive and dumb. Remember Google Ads (formerly, AdWords), how about YouTube? That is very comparable and even cheaper in some situations to Facebook Ads. Think about how your customer would be in market for whatever you are selling and relate it back to the AIDA model.
AIDA Model
  • Live Video
    • What is better than regular video? Live Video! A team I am on entirely transformed the way we do our launches with live video as opposed to pre-recorded ones. It leveled up the user experience and accounted or a lot more sales. People love asking questions and the engagement goes through the roof with it. Try it out, all you need is a phone…
  • Relevancy
    • I see Digital Marketers as more “Data Managers” more than anything else nowadays. What I mean by that is giving ad platforms the information they need, and letting their algorithms do the heavy lifting. Example: I run ads for a car dealership and we only want to show remarketing ads to people who viewed those vehicles on our site. More specifically, we want to show them the exactvehicle they viewed. We do this by using tools like Google Tag Manager in order to set variables (aka macros) in order to look for elements on the page (like the Vehicle Identification Number – VIN #) and then sending that to Facebook to index a catalog of all our VIN #s – not before a list suppression of those who bought, however 🙂
    • I do what I described above once and it’s on autopilot. Data-Driven Digital Marketers will always be in demand.
  • Story Driven Video
    • One of the reasons I got out of the video industry (I used to create videos for businesses) is because I saw the rise of mobile, and the need for expensive camera gear and Video Professionals is really not needed much at all, if any, in my opinion nowadays. If you have a good writer and creating a story, then that’s really all you need. Haven’t you seen the Instagram Stories, Facebook Stories, etc popping up? (I still hate vertical videos, BTW…)
    • Start focusing on what you are going to say and stop focusing on how you are going to capture it. You’ll figure it out…and we’ve split tested high production videos and phone videos in Facebook Ads. Guess which one won? Hint: The answer is in your pocket.
  • Mobile is King
    • Design user experiences for mobile, period. (Notice I didn’t say websites – but simply “experiences”…)
    • Those who design for mobile, test their website with Google Pagespeeds, etc. will be rewarded.

All these topics are what DID work for 2018 and I see them continuing to work and trend even higher for 2019

Are you someone who invests back into yourself or your business? Do you have any different predictions for 2019? If so, leave me a comment below and tell me more about it!

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