As marketers, we’re always looking for better ways to lead successful campaigns, and there are endless strategies and trends we can test in this regard.
But one crucial step that many tend to overlook is goal setting. When you know your goals, you can come up with a clearer idea of what you need to do to tackle the tasks at hand - like which platforms you should be engaging with, what kind of content to create, and how to best reach new audience members.
Goals can also show you whether or not your efforts are producing the desired results. In this post, we'll look at six steps that'll help you set goals to keep your marketing campaigns on track and maximize your opportunities for success.
1. Start With the Big Picture
Think about what you want to achieve with your brand over the next year or so. Having a good idea of what your big picture goals are will help you determine which smaller goals you can set to help you get there.
Every goal that you set should work to help you achieve your longer-term aims. Some big picture goals might include attracting more followers, increasing conversions, or boosting post reach.
2. Know Where You Stand
It’s impossible to monitor progress, and judge success, if you don’t know your starting point - before undertaking any strategic initiative, run an audit on your existing social accounts so that you know where you stand.
You should look to tackle this step before you begin creating your goals in order to ensure that you're starting from a logical platform, and have a good idea of what you'll realistically be able to achieve.
3. Create Specific Goals
One of the biggest reasons why people fail to achieve their goals is that their aims are too broad and open-ended.
While big-picture goals are definitely important, it’s hard to set yourself up for success if you don’t have a concrete idea of exactly what it is you’re trying to do. For example, instead of using a vague goal like “increase engagement”, you might say, “increase post engagement by 20% on Facebook over the next 3 months.”
4. Make Your Goals Attainable
Every goal you set should present a challenge, because overcoming challenges in an essential part of improvement.
But while you should be pushing yourself to succeed, you shouldn’t make your goals so difficult that they’re impossible to reach. If your goals aren’t attainable, you’ll be setting yourself up for failure from the beginning, which can actually set you back instead of propelling you forward.
5. Monitor Your Metrics
You need to be regularly checking in your metrics to ensure your efforts are seeing you make progress towards your goals.
By keeping tabs on performance in this way, you can position yourself to make adjustments, and tweak your strategy so that you see relevant improvements.
The specific metrics that you keep an eye on will depend on the goals you’ve set. At times you’ll want to be measuring metrics such as likes, comments, and shares - especially if an increase in engagement or brand awareness is one of your goals. Other times you’ll want to monitor your reach, site traffic, and sign-ups.
It all depends on what you’re trying to accomplish, but be sure to keep tabs on the relevant metrics, and look out for trends and changes.
6. Create a Time Table
If you don’t outline how much time you’re giving yourself to accomplish any given goal, your brain will assume that you have forever to do it. This can lead to procrastination and the feeling that it’s okay to put your goals on the back-burner.
Alternatively, when you have certain milestones to hit by certain dates, you’ll find it easier to constantly put the effort into making those deadlines.
Keeping your goals in mind is an important part of any effective marketing strategy. In doing so, you’ll be better able to track your progress, reach new milestones, and see better results. When you have strong goals that keep your marketing strategy on track, your bottom line will see the benefits.