Don't get political unless its a all encompassing thing, keep the drama to a minimum level, exceed it sparingly and don't jump the shark with it. Make a running gag or two, a unique every-so-often character that drops in for a few strips and then disappears for a while after. You don't NEED to be relevant to current trends, you can acknowledge they exist and move on. Make sure your character is relatable to your intended audience while keeping the trifecta in mind. Teen? Teen things with slight adult things. Adults? Adult things with some kid things to appeal to their youth. Kids? kid things with Teen things sprinkled in.
Keep your narrative contained to what it is and not what it isn't. If you're gonna branch out, make sure you have a plan for it, don't just do it willy nilly.
Besides that, don't cave to the pressure of your audience, don't make a character gay just because, don't make characters date just because, don't do ANYTHING just because the want you too.