Last month we posted an article about the need to plan out your strategic marketing plan for the new year NOW, rather than come in late to the game. However, many people find it hard to pinpoint what is an attainable and realistic goal. That is because they fail to realize that there are two types of goals, stretch goals and SMART goals.
What is a Stretch Goal?
A stretch goal does just what it says, it stretches you. Think about where you want to be at the END of next year. Do you want to double your gross sales? Would you like to triple the number of leads garnered by your website? You can have more than one stretch goal, but it’s best not to go overboard or you may not have the resources you need to accomplish all of them.
Knowing what you want to achieve makes you more efficient and helps you focus your efforts and resources. However, a stretch goal is too big and hard to achieve unless you break it down into manageable, small goals. That is where SMART goals come into play.
What is a SMART Goal?
SMART is an acronym used as a tool to help break a stretch goal down into a workable plan.
S – specific
M – measurable
A – achievable, action-oriented
R – realistic, results-oriented
T – tangible, trackable
As an example, let’s say your stretch goal is to double your gross sales over the next year. Great! Now let’s see if that goal is realistic by breaking it into SMART goals.
Ask yourself a series of questions and gather some data. Are sales trending up or down? What channels do I have for gathering revenue? Will I need more resources?
Let’s say you identify your website as a sales tool that is showing great promise. You can set SMART goals to increase the number of visitors to your website.
M – You will hire a content specialist to improve your SEO, for X dollars, and increase your SEM budget by X dollars.
A – Based on previous AdWords performance and current ranking in the SERP, we know that this is achievable.
R – Realistically, we should see an increase in one month and achieve an X% increase in three months.
T – We will generate monthly and quarterly reports to track our progress.
Making SMART Goals Personal
Logically, you won’t meet your stretch goal if you don’t meet your SMART goals. That is why you have to make stretch goals and SMART goals for yourself.
Let’s say you are the content specialist hired by the company in the previous example. You have been tasked with improving the company’s SEO on their website. How are you going to do that? The only way you can accomplish your task is to set SMART goals that allow you to do so.
Coach team members on how to set goals for themselves that help the company achieve its overall goals. After all, the success of one directly relates to the success of the other.
Since 2006, intouch Business has been conceiving big ideas, visually presented by dynamic creative, supported by a solid foundation of strategy. We love creative ideas and visuals but we believe what you say or look like must not stray from total support of your strategy. If you want to grow your business and need help with your marketing strategy, contact intouch Business. It’s one of the SMARTEST things you can do.