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PPC reporting, Running an online Agency, SEM

What You Need To Know About Goal Setting For Marketing

By Team Swydo
30 October 2019

Corporate goal setting is one of the most foundational aspects of managing any team or business. In marketing, it’s absolutely vital to set clear, attainable, and relevant goals. Not only does it help direct your marketing campaigns, but it can help onboard new clients, improve team communication, and a host of other benefits. 

If you’re new to setting goals, you may not be sure where to start. Fortunately, it can be easy and rewarding to begin the goal setting process, and it helps create a more succinct, actionable strategy for your business.

The Difference Between Goals And Objectives

It can be easy to get goals and objectives confused. While they’re similar concepts, they usually have a different meaning, function, and execution. Goals are the long term pursuits that businesses endeavor to achieve. They are the broader purpose, while objectives are the specific tasks that help achieve a goal.

Objectives are still goals, but are less about concepts and more about targets and quotas. A successful business needs both goals and objectives. The difference between a business goal and a personal goal, however, is that business goals are usually more quantifiable, like an objective. 

Why Set Goals And Objectives?

Setting goals and objectives is about more than where you want to end up in 5 years. Daily, weekly, and monthly targets can help improve any business strategy, and can unite a team to move in the same direction. Marketers are more than familiar with KPIs and evaluating data, and goals can add another dimension to your business’s success.

Track Business Performance

Goals can help you track your business performance. If you want to grow your client list by 26% by the end of the year, setting a weekly objective of .5% will help you stay on top of the project. Or if you’re trying to increase campaign ROI for a client, setting objectives that include both reductions in costs and increase in conversions can have a huge impact. 

Of course, you can make both specific and broad goals to track performance. A broad goal of increasing your client list by .5% weekly can be supported by a daily objective of 15 cold-calls. If you find that you’re occasionally falling short of that .5% increase, maybe up that daily objective to 20 cold calls. It’s easier to track your progress by meeting daily objectives rather than waiting until the end of the year to see if you got that 26% increase.

Motivate Your Team

Everyone needs a purpose, and setting goals can help give your team that drive. If you’re working on an email campaign, and your only directive is to improve email CTR, you’ll be less motivated than if you’re following the broader team goal of increasing client sales by 10% this month. When the whole team is united by a common set of goals, they’ll coordinate and collaborate more, rather than focusing on their own project.

You can also segment the goals by department. So if you’re working on a remarketing campaign, the broad goal can be to increase the lifetime value of each customer. From here, you can set goals specific to each marketing channel. For example, reduce the cost-per-click for the PPC campaign, increase CTR for the email campaign, and get more conversions through organic traffic. All of these individual goals support the broader goal.

Create A Path To Success

Most of us have long-term goals, but it can be tough to imagine a path forward. Say you want your firm to triple in size, but you don’t know how to get there. Create quarterly, monthly, and weekly goals that can make that happen. Quarterly growth of 7% is pretty achievable, and will get you to that long-term goal in 4 years.

You can create short term goals to construct a clear path to success. Once you’ve established that you want to grow your business by 7% per quarter, you can create monthly and weekly goals to get you there. Create goals that cut your expenses, improve your client outcomes, and help build your client list.

Improve Ability To Measure Impact Of Decisions

Having goals also allows you to measure the impact of decisions. If you are unsure about two potential strategies, you can choose the one that your team agrees upon and then see if you reached your goal. If you did, you can assume that the decision had a positive impact, and if you did not, you can assume that it had a negative one.

Of course, you should never assume that a single factor, even a major decision, was the deciding factor in whether you achieved your goal. There are always dozens of factors at play.

Ensure Everyone Is On The Same Page

With goals clearly laid out, you can easily ensure that everyone is on the same page. It is particularly important in marketing that goals are established and communicated effectively with any stakeholder or clients. If your performance will be judged by reaching these goals, all parties must be in agreement.

Types Of Goals You Should Consider

It can be easy to only look at big, long-term goals and skip on the weekly and daily objectives. By incorporating both long-term and short-term goals, you can increase your odds of being successful in achieving them.

Outcome Goals

Outcome goals are focused on achieving results. They’re the end of the plan, and are typically long term. In the business world, they tend to be the big ideas, like increasing market share, doubling your average client lifetime value, or reducing churn. 

Performance Goals

Most of the goals you should be setting are performance goals. These are the daily, weekly, and monthly targets that help you achieve long-term success, and are a lot like objectives. If your outcome goal is to increase local market share by 1% by the end of the year, a monthly target of adding 2 clients would be a performance goal. The end goal isn’t to add those 2 clients every month, but is rather increasing your market share by 1%. 

You can have long-term performance goals, too. For example, if you’re trying to quadruple your firm’s value within 10 years, you can have performance goals that you’re trying to meet once every few years. 

Tips For Maximizing Performance By Setting Goals

Once you understand how setting goals will help your business, you’ll want to make sure you’re taking the right approach to setting goals. These tips will make sure that the goals you set are adding the most value to your business.

Set SMART Goals

One well known method to set your goals is to follow the SMART formula, meaning that they should be:

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Attainable
  • Relevant
  • Timely

If your goal is to be the best marketing firm there is, it isn’t very SMART. Instead of the lofty, vague ideal of being the best, be specific. Grow your local market share from 2% to 10% over the next 3 years. Focus on improving client lifetime value to double what it is now by the end of the year. Create quarterly goals to cut down costs by 10%. Each of these goals is SMART, making them powerful for growing your business.

Do A SWOT Analysis

The classic SWOT analysis is one of the most powerful tools for setting your business goals. Start by looking at your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. Identify what challenges you face, and what you define as success. Using this approach will not only help you understand your own opportunities, but can also give you insight into your competitors and your market, helping you set up both long and short term goals.

Use Secondary And Qualitative Goals

It can be easy to set generic goals. Sure, every business wants to grow revenues, and every marketing campaign needs to maximize ROI. But setting more creative goals can help your business grow in ways you won’t find with standard goal setting. Plus, they can provide engaging challenges that motivates your firm even more. For example, instead of just increasing average client spend, incorporate client satisfaction, referrals, reviews, and other value-adding outcomes.

Stay Grounded

When you’re focusing on goal setting, it’s important that short term goals don’t get “lost” when considering long term goals. The more short-term a goal is, the more control you have over the outcome. So set long-term goals, but put most of your energy into what you can do today, this week, and this month. Use the long-term to guide the short term, but your actions should be dedicated to the short-term.

Similarly, you have to make sure that your goals aren’t out of reach. It’s likely that you’re going to fall short on some of your intermediate goals, so be ready to evaluate your progress for your long-term goals and be ready to adjust your short-term objectives. You don’t want your plans to fall apart after a bad quarter. Because of this, your short term goals should be much more specific, while your long term goals can be a little more vague.

Constantly Evaluate

In any campaign or strategy, you want to constantly evaluate and tweak your plan. The same is true when it comes to setting business goals. It’s often the case that you have to make estimations on what you can achieve. If you set a goal to increase your total revenue by 3% this quarter, and you’ve already achieved that in the first month, set a more aggressive quarterly target. Conversely, don’t be afraid to lower your target if it looks like you’re falling short.

Getting The Most Out Of Goal Setting

Goal setting and objectives are just two of the many components of creating a successful business strategy. It can work at nearly all levels of your business, from big, overarching goals to small daily targets. Constantly set objectives and goals that you can achieve, and follow the path to long-term success. From marketing campaigns to running a business, setting goals and objectives is a fundamental component to see real results.

Swydo help you and your team set and track goals and stay accountable to them, ensuring that you’re on track to meet your long-term goals. The platform’s centralized client KPI overview allows you to monitor multiple KPI dashboards from one location. Start a free trial today and see for yourself!