How Are Your New Year's Resolutions Going? — Experts Weigh In

Can you believe we’re already part way through March? It still feels like New Year’s Eve was last night. But now that we’re in the groove of 2017, we wanted to check in on how our small business experts are keeping up with their resolutions. Based off of the responses we received, it seems pretty well!

1. “We took a qualitative approach to resolutions this year. We set out to improve customer happiness. Yes, it’s hard to measure happiness, but they know it when they feel it. So, we ask them from time to time. Are you happy with us? We haven’t lost any customers yet this year, so we are pleased.” -Todd Horton, KangoGift

2. “I decided that 2017 was the year that I would really start to up my game in terms of SEO. Although I have used an SEO agency for several years, who have provided fresh blog content and made sure my pages are optimized, I have now also brought in their outreach and link-building services. Since beginning work for me at the end of January they have gained me several organic links, and I am already, slowly starting to see this have a positive impact on rankings.” -Grant van der Harst, Anglo Liners

3. “We had goals of several types. Some about growth and scale but others about simply doing some simple processes better. In terms of process, we are working hard to improve our inventory management and tracking the details of our financials every month, versus scrambling at the end of the year. So far, so good!” -Adam Chudy, SoJourner Bags

4. “My New Year’s resolutions I made for my businesses were 1) Add more profits in Earnings and Value. 2) More exposure of our business, service, and products 3) More outsourcing. 4) Publish 30 or more high quality books by year’s end. I will say three months into the year we have accomplished most of our resolutions. My publishing company is working with many new authors and have release dates for their books set.” -Vid Lamonte’ Buggs Jr., Author/Athlete/Philanthropist

5. “At the start of the year I resolved to double revenue, to hire at least one new recurring client per month, and to improve media relations for the firm and our clients.

In January, I went from a team of one to a team of five; including my cat, who is our Goodwill Ambassador. We’ve signed 4 new recurring clients since the start of the year; and this month, we tripled revenues from what we made in December 2016. I’ve also gained 7 media placements for the firm and our clients, since January.” -Alexis Chateau, Alexis Chateau PR, LLC

6. “This year is the 10-year anniversary of my company, Paperfish Creative, so I decided to do resolutions by 10’s: 10 book pages written a month, 20 three-day weekends for the year, etc. On the infographic I drew for it, I have goals that are by week, month and year. For example: workout 40 minutes, four times a week, and 80 minutes of public speaking for the year – all leading up to my overall goal, which is defined by my word of the year: SWAGGER. I have been consistently making progress to all of my goals, and have already surpassed my 70’s.” -Jennifer Andos, Paperfish Creative

7. “I am the CEO/Founder of ALH Group LLC, a college preparation company. My main New Year’s resolution was to transition from my 9-5 job to a full-time business owner. I am excited to share that I will be a full-time business owner effective April 28, 2017!” -Ashley Hill, College Prep Ready

8. “Consistently sharing useful content to customers through our blog was a top New Year’s marketing resolution. We brainstormed a list of topics and created an editorial calendar, yet posts still aren’t going up as frequently as I’d planned. So it’s time to revisit other initiatives taking up time and make blogging a priority for the remainder of the year.” -Gates Little, The Southern Bank Company

9. “My New Year’s resolution for my small business is to spend more time engaging my with target audience. I’ve been doing pretty well in terms of social media interactions with my customers, but I still want to do more. It’s always difficult to keep a New Year’s resolution for my business but social interactions with my customers is essential to learn what my customers and and improving my products and brand.” -Lisa Chu, Black N Bianco

10. “As a company, we are working to integrate more learning into our daily routines for our 2017 New Year’s resolution. This could be as time intensive as taking an online course to improve a work-related skill or as simple as reading an article from an industry-relevant publication every morning. So far, we have kept up with this resolution, and it’s really having a positive effect on our company culture. Our resolution has helped us to foster an environment of ongoing education, and we are working to make it a permanent part of our culture, not just a resolution for 2017!” -Evan Harris, SD Equity Partners

11. “Our company’s new year’s resolution was purge all our low-content pages, a project we’d put off for years since it required an audit of hundreds of thousands of pages on our site. So far, we’re just slightly ahead of schedule but have already seen a modest increase in search traffic as a result. It’s a tedious task, for sure, but spread out between a dozen people it’s much more manageable, and I’d highly recommend it for any company with a significant online presence.” -Mike Catania, PromotionCode

12. “Here’s a unique and somewhat crazy New Year’s resolution that is paying off in a huge way! I decided to give away 1,000 ideas this year – I simply come up with anything that is useful (or multiple useful ideas) for as many people as possible and then approach them and give them those ideas, asking for nothing in return. So far I have given away 213 ideas to 34 people. Even though I did not ask for anything in return, this method has generated over $5,000 in referral business by people going out of their way to try to bring value back to me in return!” -Carrie Wood, Lease Ref

13. “My new year’s business resolution is – “Empower my team to do more.”

And yes I am able to keep up with it – As a part of this I have started providing in-house training for my employees from experts so that the more people know, the more capable and confident they become. This way employees continue to grow, they add value to the company, and their performance improves over time.” -Amit Kumar, Nibblematrix

14. “My New Year’s resolutions was business process optimization. I am still working on it because it requires a lot of communication with the staff. Sometime you really have to push other to try new approaches which can potentially increase quality and productivity. I am also trying to be more open to significant changes and always think outside the box.” -Stan Loskutov, Medical Billing Group, Inc.

15. “As a growing local merchant services company, one of our main New Year’s resolutions was to focus more on finding quality candidates by casting a wider net in our talent pool. 2016 was filled with conventional recruiting methods and in 2017 we wanted to think outside of the box. We’ve begun using LinkedIn and other Social Media outlets to help, but what has changed is the parking lot parties we are doing in 2017. Our first recruitment fair/parking lot party in Q1 has a packed-out RSVP list and we plan on doing these quarterly to not only help with recruiting, but also the stickiness and culture with our existing staff. Blue Dog Business Services has many goals for 2017, but developing a high-quality and coherent team has been our highest priority because it improves everything else we do as a company.” -Ron Eliot Dichter, Blue Dog Business Services

16. “This year we set a New Year’s resolution to stay focused more on customer centric design for how we are building out our product. So far in 2017 we are doing well with our New Year’s resolution because we are forcing every member of the team to do at least one hour of customer support every day. No matter if you’re an engineer, controller, administrative assistant, or the CEO you have to do an hour of customer support every day. It’s amazing what an improvement this has made on focusing our team on being grounded in customer logic, and not company logic.” -Bryan Clayton, GreenPal

17. “My New Year’s resolution was to take my app concept (living in the moment) and bring it to life. It’s taken 8 months to develop the app, website, and everything that involves starting a new business. It’s been tough with many long nights and days. I also work a full time job so I have to strategically get work done to continue to have a life.” -Dwaine Evans, Inquire – Stop Light Dating  

18. “I own an e-commerce website selling skincare and beauty products, which launched in mid-November. By the time New Years rolled around, the site was (and still is!) very new. Before launching, we didn’t quite know what to expect but after a year of working to launch the site we had high hopes. My New Year’s resolution was to keep growing my new business in terms of number of sales and also revenue every single month in 2017, and so far, we have accomplished this!” -Stefanie Parks, DermWarehouse

19. “As a Certified Yoga, Pilates and Nutrition instructor that has a small business teaching privately and small groups in the Hampton’s and NYC mostly I have created some goals for this year.

-I wanted to be more exposed through social media and it’s happening! My website is being revamped with my new image/brand

-another intention was to have a photo shoot that will capture my new theme/brand and this will be happening in the next two weeks!

-Another goal was to market my yoga, pilates and Nutrition by joining with other businesses in order to build more clientele and I have! There’s a few private chef’s and massage therapists that work together with me so that we referring clients.

-so far this year, my bookings look better than ever!” -Claudia Matles,

20. “Our resolution was to drive more traffic to our website. It has been successful. It was accomplished by optimizing the site and creating fresh, valuable content. Also by building more mentions and inbound links.” -Jeff Stirewalt, Brooklyn Unplugged Tours

21. “I have created a collection of multicultural dolls and a children’s ebook about them to promote diversity and inclusion. My New Year’s resolution is to have a successful crowdfunding campaign to fund the first production. After 2.5-month of active planning, I’ll be launching my crowdfunding campaign on next Tuesday.

As a work from home mum, I was struggling to keep up with the progress at the beginning and I have to postpone the launch date, but I’m more or less on track now with the help from my husband.” -Winnie Mak, One Dear World Ltd

22. “When we started the New Year, we wanted to begin to invest in marketing to ensure people knew of our product. As soon as we began investing in our business, we saw growth at more than five times the pace we had being seeing pre-investment! It just makes sense that since we believed in our product, why wouldn’t we invest in our team?” -Charles Markman, Galaxy Media Co.

23. “This year is great for my consulting business because I set clear and concise goals. I am writing for a local paper and getting exposure, booking more new clients while taking care of my seasoned ones, traveling more for my business, and I’m about to get a logo trademarked that’s an expansion to help women who’ve experienced child loss. My clients are being impacted in a positive way and my income is increasing. It’s only the first quarter and my goals are happening one by one. I’m so thankful.” -Stacy Roberts, SMR Leadership Solutions, LLC

24. “Improve the website experience was my resolution. We manage our own website, and all updates are handled by myself. After speaking with a web consultant in 2016, my resolution for 2017 was to try and improve the customer experience on our website as much as possible for 2017. I now compress all images on the site, write everything to the best of my ability and make sure that every page displays properly on mobile devices. It’s a lot of work but it is definitely helping.” -Max Robinson, Floor Heating Direct

25. “Our main resolution for 2017 was to improve our social media efforts, and so we far we feel like we’re doing a great job with this. Previously we’d only ever spent time using Facebook, but since introducing platforms like Twitter and Reddit, we’ve noticed exciting growth for our online presence. The next goal for the year is to start investing more into our social media advertising efforts than our offline advertising, and so far we’re feeling positive about achieving this!” -Sam Williamson, Turnbull & Scott Industrial Heating

26. “It’s a bad news-good news scenario at Matt McKee Photography. One of my New Years resolutions was to reach out to ten new people each day, using my anti-cold call method to talk about biotech photography services. The bad news is I can’t seem to get through ten calls because of the good news: I often end up with one or two great conversations that lead to a photo shoot or two!” -Matt McKee, Matt McKee Photography

27. “The New Year’s resolutions I made for my business was 1.To increase my presence on social media 2. Find more free ways to increase my knowledge about my industry.  I have been keeping up with both resolutions and more business is being generated.” -Laina Avant, Leap 21

28. “Our New Year’s resolution for this year was – get this – to relax!

We’ve found that stressed-out individuals tend to press too hard for results at crucial moments, and the harder someone presses for a result, the less likely she will achieve it.

Not taking ourselves too seriously here at GreaseBook helped us to look at life as a game – a game in which each player gets to participate for an unknown period of time. And, after recognizing that both life and business were games, it became much easier for us not to take ourselves too seriously, which in turn made it that much easier to succeed.

After all, if life is just a game, why be afraid to take chances? There’s no way that you’re going to get out of the game alive anyway, so what’s the point of being timid?” -Greg Archbald, GreaseBook Oil Production Software

29. “For Vow To Be Chic, 2017 is all about visibility! Many women still don’t know that you can rent your bridesmaid dress! We’re disrupting an age-old industry and we want people to know that there’s an easier and more affordable way to dress your bridal party. You can shop for designer bridesmaid dresses just like you shop for everything else – online.” -Kelsey Doorey, Vow To Be Chic