Submitted by Israel
Thu, 05/23/2013 – 10:46
Small business marketing consultants emphasize the importance of setting SMART goals. SMART goals are specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time-bound. Using the SMART system increases the likelihood the company will achieve those important goals throughout the year.
The first step in the SMART system, according to small business marketing consultants, is to make your goals as specific as possible. Identify who is involved in accomplishing the goal and exactly what you want to accomplish. If possible, identify a location where the goal will be achieved and a time frame for achieving it. The goal should also identify information or tangibles necessary to reach the desired outcomes and any constraints that might cause difficulty. Finally, identify the benefits that will come with accomplishing the goal. For example, as part of your small business internet marketing, a general goal may be “Get more traffic on my website.” The more specific goal would be “Update my blog three times per week using SEO practices.”
Make Goals Measurable
Once you have created specific goals, small business marketing consultants recommend establishing concrete criteria for measuring your progress toward those goals. By creating a method for measuring progress, you are more likely to stay on track with your small business marketing services. In addition, as you reach your target dates and achieve the milestones, you will be more motivated to continue to the next goal due to a strong feeling of accomplishment.
Attainable, But Not Easy
Once you identify your specific goals and determine how to measure your progress, small business marketing consultants say you should be sure your goals are challenging yet attainable. Almost all goals are attainable if you set specific steps to reach those goals. Even those that appear impossible seem more attainable when you break them down into smaller, easier-to-achieve goals. For example, a small business internet marketing goal to have one million Facebook likes within six months is probably not attainable, but setting a goal of increasing your Facebook likes by 10 percent per month until you reach one million likes is definitely attainable.
Although any goal can be reached by taking the right steps, small business marketing consultants also caution that you must be willing to do what is necessary to achieve those goals. Setting a goal to increase profits is a realistic goal as long as you are willing to either cut costs or increase production in order to increase those profits. Being realistic does not mean lowering your goals. Rather, realistic goals mean you may have to take an honest, discerning look at changes you must make in order to make those goals a reality.
Set a Time Frame
If there is no time frame, there is no sense of urgency to achieve goals. For example, if one of your goals is to increase production, setting a goal to do so “someday” is counterproductive. Instead, setting a goal to increase production by 10 percent by March 1 puts a deadline on when you want to achieve the goal. This creates a sense of urgency in implementing your small business marketing services to achieve the goal by the deadline.
Make sure that you follow these guidelines to ensure your company is SMART in 2013.