Want to Strategically Grow Your Small Business? Get SMART About Your Marketing Goals!

How often have you set marketing goals only to have spotty results, not generating the outcomes you desired?  Its okay, we’ve all been there!  However, if you desire growth for your small business, it’s vital to begin setting SMART marketing goals to achieve the optimal results.

Perhaps you’ve heard of the SMART mnemonic that stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time Bound.  This simple yet effective principle can be applied to your marketing goals.  The key is to ensure that they align with your overall business objectives so that it’s purposeful and intentional towards the growth of your company.

Here are the five key elements to creating SMART marketing goals for your business:

#1 Specific

It’s important that your marketing goals are clear and well-defined with a specific result you’re aiming to reach.  You see, vague goals like “We want to increase our social media following”, for example, are not detailed enough to provide direction to achieve the outcome.  However, making it specific to “We will boost our Facebook Fan page likes to 5,000 followers” allows you to see the goal and brings it more to life…you can now create an action plan that supports this goal!  You want to make it simple, detailed, and have it pinpoint the exact end result.

To help create specific goals for your business marketing, consider answering the 5 W’s and How.  Asking questions like who is your target audience (or buyer persona), what types of problems or concerns does your market have, what types of content resonate most with your audience, and how is your business able to help resolve their problems are good starters to creating specific goals.

#2 Measurable

Including precise dates and quantitative or qualitative attributes enhances the clarity of your marketing goal even further.  In the previous example, including the specific number of 5,000 makes the goal measurable; you’ve established concrete criteria for which to base your progress and success.

Without a way to measure your success, you miss out on the celebration that comes with knowing you have actually achieved something.  To determine if your goal is measurable, ask questions like how much, how many, and how will we know when it’s accomplished!

#3 Achievable

Now that you’ve set a specific, measurable goal, it’s time to design the action plan to execute and bring it to fruition.   You want to make sure that it’s possible to achieve the goals you set.  To achieve your marketing goals may require additional skill sets or training, leveraging a marketing agency, or tweaking your goals to your current team’s abilities yet still challenges them to improve performance.

#4 Relevant

As mentioned, your goals should align with your overall business objectives.  You want them to be relevant to the direction you desire for your brand.  In doing so, you’ll develop the focus needed for your small business to stay on track and be motivated to stay the course.  How does boosting your Facebook fans to 5,000 bolster your business goals?  Being clear on the why behind the goal gives you and your team fuel to persist, even when the going gets tough!

#5 Time Bound

Finally, your goals should have a deadline.  Setting the date on the calendar helps solidify your marketing goals and gives your team a day to work towards.  “We will boost our Facebook Fan page likes to 5,000 followers by September 15th, 2016” is an ideal illustration of putting a date on it.  When you are working on a deadline, your sense of urgency increases and achievement will come that much quicker.

This also gives you a day to celebrate your success!

Conclusion

It’s time to get SMART about your marketing goals to yield the outcomes you desire.  The beauty of this formula is that it’s simple, effective and can literally be applied to any goals you have within your organization.  The key is to create the plan then execute it within the time-frame you set.  You will be amazed at the creativity and the results generated due to setting SMART marketing goals!

Much success!  For more inbound marketing best practices and tips, please visit our blog or check some of our latest successful blog posts:

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