A SMART Method for Setting Your Inbound Strategy
What’s your plan for your next campaign? By now, you probably know that having a strategy for the actions you take in your business allows you to be more organized and coordinated in your efforts.According to the Content Marketing Institute, “Business-to-business (B2B) marketers who have a documented strategy are more effective and less challenged with every aspect of content marketing.”
In order to create an effective strategy, you have to set goals for what you want to accomplish. Why? Because nobody wakes up one day successful. One powerful method for determining how to set the right goals for your company or campaign is the SMART goal setting method. Here is some background on what this method is and how you can make it work for you.
SMART Goal Setting
When brainstorming goals to set for your marketing strategy, a critical mistake that business owners often make is setting goals that are too broad. Having broad goals makes it difficult to hone in on what you are striving to accomplish.
For example, say your goal was to “make our website better.” While it has good intention, that goal defines no specific attributes that you can improve.
It’s like going into a baseball practice and saying, “Alright, let’s score more runs!” It would be more effective to focus on something less vague, like improving the amount of visits or the number of leads that you get (or improving your swing approach). Setting a specific goal gives you a target objective to improve, making it easier to build a strategy around.
Just as you should make sure that your goals are specific, you should also ensure they are measurable. If you have no way to measure results, it’s difficult to know when you have accomplished your goal. When setting your goals, provide a number or target range that you want to reach. Doing so will help you recognize the progress you’ve made toward achieving your desired end and allow you to evaluate your goals to determine if they aren’t reasonable, or are too easily achieved.
Business owners often set lofty goals for their company – and that’s great, even encouraged – but you want to make sure that those goals are still attainable. If your aim is overly ambitious, it could make reaching those goals impossible (or at least make it feel that way). Do research. Determine industry and company standards or benchmarks so you have a reference for what an attainable goal would be. That way you’ll be able to build a more suitable strategy to meet and exceed those averages
It may seem obvious, but you also want to be sure that your SMART goal relates back to your overall goal. Whatever strategy you construct will be useless to you, no matter how good it is, if it doesn’t move you toward your overall campaign or company goals. The SMART goals you set should be relevant to your vision and be aligned with your desired end.
Last, but not least, your goals should be timely. Set an end date by when you think is reasonable to have accomplished your goals. Create a time frame. You can have an overall time frame and/or break it down into daily, weekly or monthly segments that incrementally move you closer to that SMART goal. Taking this step can help keep you on schedule and ensure that you’re actively working toward achieving success.