No matter how many marketing classes and marketing books you read, you will hear about the SMART goals. It is an acronym for specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-based goals. Smart, right? The SMART goals are at the heart of every marketing campaign you can think of. It is a relevant and valuable tool to making sure businesses are not setting themselves up for lofty goals that are impossible to achieve (except when you’re lucky). The best thing about SMART goals is that it applies to small and large businesses alike.
Setting goals for a business is important. Look at what SMRT CEO Neo Kian Hong did when he took over the transport company that manages Singapore’s Mass Rapid Transit (MRT). During the first few weeks of his appointment, Mr. Neo set out three goals: provide reliability, create sustainability, and ensure continuous improvement. He said that these three goals would bring public trust back to the MRT amid backlash because of several incidences. But to achieve these goals, Mr. Neo has to divide them into specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-based goals.
What is a specific goal that is part of the steps you need to achieve your main goal? If you want to raise brand awareness as the main goal, a specific goal would be to generate a following social media channel. But this is a generic goal, too. You have to be more specific. For example, a more specific goal would be to get 1,000 followers in six months. That means you have built awareness about your brand.
How will you know that you are making the right steps toward your goal? To see if you are on track to achieve your goals, you have to measure your success. For this specific goal, you need to count the number of new followers you get every week.
You can do an “inventory” of your followers. How many have been added to your original number of followers before you set the goal? How many of them are engaging in your posts? You have to know the level and depth of commitment that your followers have to your business.
How are you going to attain your goal? To get to your 1,000th follower, you have to generate at least 40 followings a week. You can achieve that through a couple of means. You can ask your network to follow you back on your official page, or you can launch a social media contest that will “require” people to follow you back. The latter is the easiest way to generate followers, though that may not be sustainable.
Another thing you can do is to partner with other businesses. You might want to partner with a company that already has a solid following so you can reach out to its followers, too. This will help in your company’s ascension to the top of the social media food chain.
Why do you want to have more followers on social media? How will that help you achieve your main goal of raising brand awareness? Having more followers means that more people will be exposed to your products and services, campaigns, and product launches. This will allow you to grow your business and increase your revenue. The more people are aware of your business, the more you can achieve success in whatever marketing campaign you start in the future.
To get to that point (1,000 followers), you need to do something that will encourage others to follow your social media accounts. A measurable goal is to get at least 40 followers every week. If you get at least 41 to 42 followers a week, you will achieve your goal of getting 1,000 followers in six months and thus, increase awareness about your brand.
You need a timeline of when you will achieve your goals and how you will get there. It will push you to do more work when you realize you are not on track to achieve your goal of getting more followers and raising brand awareness. Dividing your goals into small chunks will make them less overwhelming, too.
If you are unable to set SMART goals, your main goals are not clear enough. You need to clarify what you want to achieve in your business. Is it to get more clients? Is it to build your reputation in the community? You cannot simply “go for it.” A good strategy is anchored to your capacity to set a SMART goal strategy.