This article is about the benefits of SMART goals setting. I’ll explain how you can go from a task-driven approach to planning a goal-driven one.
Do you sometimes feel like you are putting in all the effort but still not reaching your goals?
This might be because the goals you set are too vague. And with unclear goals, it becomes easy for us to work on our daily tasks without seeing the big picture.
Working with SMART goals allows you to clarify your goals, focus on the right things and use your time and resources wisely to get clear results.
SMART Goals Defined
Let’s go through what SMART goals are by taking one letter at a time from the acronym for SMART goals.
When setting SMART goals for your marketing, it is important to be specific and clear.
Instead of saying “I want more visits to the website”, you could say “I want 2000 more visitors to the website within 3 months”.
The more ambiguous your goal is, the harder it is to know when you have succeeded. For example, assume you are working on increasing the traffic to your website. You need to know when you will reach your desired amount and how much you should have increased the traffic in order to have succeeded with the challenge.
Compare the objectives in the following statements:
- Getting more visitors
- Increase the number of visits by 2,000
- Increase the number of visits by 2,000 within 3 months
Which is the clearest? The last one since it tells you both what to achieve and when it should be achieved. In other words, it provides a key figure (KPI) that you can relate to and that shows whether you have reached your goal or not.
The next step is to determine if the goal is measurable. The answer is usually a simple Yes or No.
Tracking the progress of your goal is an important part of keeping you motivated. It also allows you to set milestones that make you feel proud or even celebrate each time you reach one. And you can evaluate what went wrong when you are not able to reach them.
Measurable SMART goals examples require asking yourself the following questions:
- How much?
- How many?
- What’s the best way to know if I have reached the goal?
It is important that your goals are achievable. Do not just set a goal based on your emotions, but make sure it is also reasonable.
Many people fall into the trap of setting goals that are completely unreasonable. This almost always leads to getting tired and wanting to focus on other things. Instead of setting high goals at the start, set smaller goals that can be updated more often when you reach them.
Also, try to think about how it has gone for you before. If you have managed to reach a goal, you can look for ways to improve the next one.
If your blog traffic increased by 5% last month, then do not set a goal to increase it by 25% in the next month. That’s too big of a difference. A more realistic target would be 7-8%.
Achievable SMART goals criteria usually answer questions like these:
- How can I reach this goal?
- Is the goal realistic based on my previous experiences?
- How realistic is it to reach the goal within the time limit I have set?
If your goals are not relevant to your business, it’s probably not worth it when you reach them. So why even spend time on those goals? Instead, you should make sure that your ideas for SMART goals are beneficial to your business.
- They should be worth your time and money (or other resources)
- There should be an opportunity to work on the goal
- It should match some kind of need or goals (e.g., sales target)
- You should be able to reach the goal with the resources you have
In digital marketing, there is so much to work on that it is sometimes easy to focus on goals that are not significant.
For example, spending time gaining more followers on Instagram may not be as important as increasing the number of leads. If the goal is to get more leads, you should really think about the best method to reach that particular goal.
It is valuable to get a complete insight into your digital marketing efforts to understand the aspects that have a positive impact on your business. Then it will be easier to come up with the ideas for SMART goals and KPIs.
Good goals need to have a timeline.
It makes you motivated to start working towards the goal and reaching it. Your efforts are also focused on a specific period of time or a project and do not become another difficult part of your already stressful business activities.
Working with time-bound goals is a great way to move your company’s marketing forward.
Setting deadlines will help you keep your marketing alive, and you will notice that your work progresses faster. Otherwise, the risk is that you engage in things that are not prioritized, which leads to the marketing lagging behind.
A timed SMART goals list usually answers these questions:
- What can I do in 3 months?
- What can I do in 4 weeks?
- Is there anything I can do today?
3 SMART Goals Examples
Visits To A Website Or Blog
Specific: Increase website traffic by publishing 3 blog posts a week instead of 1.
Measurable: An increase in traffic by 10%.
Achievable: The traffic increased by an average of 6% in the last six months, therefore these activities should be able to result in an increase of 10%.
Time-Bound: End of this month.
SMART Goal: By the end of this month, we will increase our traffic by 10% by publishing 3 blog posts a week instead of 1.
Landing Page Targets
Specific: Get more leads by changing the template of our current landing page from 1 column to one with 2 columns.
Measurable: Increase the number of leads by 25%.
Achievable: When we previously did a test, we noticed that 2 columns increased the conversion by 20% compared to a page with 1 column.
Relevant: If we get more leads, the sales team can get more business opportunities and customers.
Time-Bound: Within 6 months.
SMART Goal: In 6 months, our landing pages will generate 25% more leads because of us changing the layout from 1 to 2 columns.
Registering For A Webinar
Specific: Increase the number of registrations for our webinar by promoting it on social media, such as Facebook and LinkedIn.
Measurable: An increase in registrations by 20%.
Achievable: Our latest webinar had 15% more sign-ups when we decided to sponsor our posts on LinkedIn.
Relevant: When our webinar creates more leads, the sales team gets to close on more deals.
Time-Bound: October 27, the day of the webinar.
SMART Goal: On October 27, we should see an increase in webinar registrations by 20% by sponsoring our posts on Facebook.