In this article, we are going to define the SMART goals framework, how it can add value and transform your marketing efforts. Also, you can use a download a free SMART goals worksheet to help your team and business build a firm true north for your next project. Firstly, we will define SMART goals and briefly then outline the process of creating your SMART goals. This is a handy guide that will help you on the go.
Your goals are an important key to a successful project, especially in marketing. Not having clear a goal is like running a race without a finish line, and can make work feel like an endless grind. In other words, a moving target is bound to eventually affect team morale, deplete company resources, and negatively affect the bottom line of your business. Also, no clear goal means you do not know if you have hit the mark, or you are a light year away from your success and growth.
To make the most of your setting goal exercise you need to make sure the goals are SMART. Making a SMART goal is an effective approach for clarifying motivations and setting your true north for you and your team. With a clear direction, you have a firm foundation and you are one step closer to celebrating your next achievement before the project starts.
Start making SMART goals with a free worksheet below.
Why are SMART Goals Important?
Generally, goals are a powerful ingredient and lead us to be effective in all our project efforts. Even though goals are essential to the success of a campaign or project, they are worthless when they are not in touch with reality. In other words, when they are not SMART, they are just like that dreaded workshop you have to attend. The SMART goals framework ensures that your goals represent a perceivable outcome of success relative to the resources at your disposal.
SMART Goals are:
What do you want to accomplish? Specific goals are clear and simple enough to share with every member of your team. “I want more visitors” is vague. “I want to grow our website traffic from our social media, is specific.
How do you plan to measure your progress? How do you know if you are succeeding or meeting your goals? “Brand engagement and social impact” are not measurable. For example, “I want to grow the number of leads generated per month from our blog by 20%”, is measurable.
Does your team or project have the abilities required to achieve the desired goal? Your goal needs to be a realistic one. It needs to be a goal, every team member believes can be reached. Remember, Rome was not built in a day, it takes time to achieve massive goals. So if your goal is a massive one, you are going to have to chop it up into chewable mini-goals, overtime. So, if your social media account is growing at a 10 new followers monthly rate, expecting to grow your new monthly followers by 1000 in the next 30 days, is setting a rather extreme expectation. This could demoralize your team and your efforts and set you up for failure.
How is this goal going to contribute to the company’s bottom line? Your marketing goals should tie back to the overall company goals. For example, by growing your website visitors to 1500 per month, you can forecast that given your conversion rate you could grow revenue by $40 000 this year.
What’s the deadline? Is it realistic? Without a specific timeframe, you will not know if your efforts are on track or of course to achieving the ultimate goal. Also without a realistic time frame, you will not be able to reach your goals.
Above all, SMART goals also give you and your team the opportunities to tweak your strategy during a campaign or project.
For instance, if you have a SMART goal set to grow the number of leads generated per month from our blog by 20%, and you are falling a little short, you have a clear set of appropriate marketing tools at your disposal to employ for better results. Assuming the cause is a high bounce rate from a social media channel, maybe you could deploy other inbound marketing tools like a targeted landing page to convert visitors into leads. Now, that is power!
In conclusion, I know, before taking the step, of making your goal a SMART goal, you are likely to procrastinate and come up with all the excuses in the world. However, remember this, once your goals are SMART, you are one step closer to you and your team celebrating yet another milestone that moves the needle and impacts the company’s bottom line. Happy SMART goals setting.