Setting realistic, appropriate, and attainable goals is essential to any successful business. In this blog Welcomemat Services walks small business owners through the key defining factors of goal setting and how to develop local marketing goals that you will actually achieve.
Setting goals is more of an art than it often appears on the surface. I’m sure we can all think back on the many emotions of goal setting and the stages that tend to go along with the task. At first it feels easy and maybe even fun – what do I want to achieve in the coming months or year? How big can I dream? Then next thing you know you are spiraling into a million questions about how you will achieve these goals — What is actually realistic? How will I prioritize and hold myself accountable? And this is exactly why only 8 percent of people actually keep their New Years Resolutions. For 2018 make it your priority to set goals that you can actually achieve! By focusing on the key defining factors outlined below you can set realistic marketing goals for your local business and stay on track to long term success.
BUILD OFF OPERATIONAL GOALS
Undoubtedly the first step of setting your local marketing goals is to thoroughly understand what your business goals are. If you need help setting your overarching business goals you can refer to one of our recent blogs, A Quick-Start Guide for Small Business Success in 2018. Think of Marketing as a tactic of your operational goals. Once you know what you want to achieve operationally, then you can apply marketing techniques to reach those goals.
PRIORITIZE & SIMPLIFY
By prioritizing your goals, you can strategically decide where to invest your time and resources first. You can link goals that build off each other and outline the roadmap to your success. To simplify bigger goals try working backwards, from end goal to current state, and breaking your goals into tasks. By understanding what smaller milestones make up your goals, you can stay on track weekly or even daily – making progress feel more recurrent and your goals feel more attainable.
Goals must be measurable. There should not be a subjective angle to whether you achieved your goal or not. Studies show that tracking the metrics of your goals makes you 2x more likely to achieve those goals. Start to compile your goals into a spreadsheet where you can quickly access them regularly. Include the milestones of your goals, start dates & deadlines, and metrics that measure when you’ve achieved your goals. Metrics can be anything – it can be the number of emails sent, number of new customers that come in your local store, or the number of new employees hired. As long as there is a clear line that defines success, it is considered measurable.
The best goals in the world mean very little if there is no plan for accountability. Building in regular touch points to evaluate the progress, measure the success, and reassess the strategy is key to achieving your goals. A great way to manage goals is to start by setting overarching yearly goals. Think of your yearly goals as guides for setting quarterly goals. By breaking milestones of your goals into three-month intervals they become more manageable. It’s also important to be realistic in volume of goals, aim for 3-5 marketing goals a quarter. Measure your success each week in a spreadsheet, and you’ll quickly learn what is and isn’t working, efficiently guiding your priorities.
It’s a fact, not all goals will be achieved and that is okay. Many would even argue that setting ambitious goals is more valuable to your business than setting low, unchallenging goals. Understanding the sweet spot between too-difficult and too-easy is the art of goal setting and it takes practice and failure to learn. Additionally, you must allow yourself to make mistakes and misjudgments. Risks can often lead to success, but not always in the most direct way. Learning from failure is just as important as learning from success.
Once you have the right approach, goal setting can become the healthiest habit of your local business success strategy. Forcing yourself to take the time to set, evaluate, and revisit your goals is worth the time investment because it allows you to allocate your time and resources by priority and bottom line value. If you’re interested in turn-key local marketing plans Welcomemat Services can provide new mover marketing programs, local digital marketing plans, email marketing and reputation management services to help you meet your marketing goals.