Marketing: Small Businesses - Creating Marketing Goals
In order to grow small businesses, it is important for the word to spread and to gain interested customers. The common saying “someone who fails to plan, plans to fail” is very applicable in this sense. Because of this, it is very important that one is aware of how to strategically create a marketing plan that can be easily referred to.
The most important part of structuring a marketing plan is to list one’s top three marketing goals within a set of time. When setting marketing goals, it is helpful to keep the acronym SMART in mind.
The S is for specific. A business should steer away from broad goals, such as “to increase sales”, because it creates confusion as to what exactly would fit under that category. It should be specific and explicit so that anyone involved in working on the business throughout the time frame can help it move along.
The M is for measurable. The outcomes of the goal should be in numerical form, such as “increasing sales by four percent”. This helps the measurement of progress along because it is not easy to see if an objective has been met if it cannot be measured.
The A is for achievable. Not every goal that pops into one’s head can be accomplished with the tools and staff provided. Therefore, it is very important to make sure that all people involved agree that with the resources available, everyone can work together to reach that goal. Additionally, the goal should not be too easy and one that can be done before the given time because then nothing meaningful gets done.
The R is for realistic. It is important to take into account the current success of competitors, the economic status of the target consumers, and the time of year when setting goals. For instance, it is not realistic for a winter clothing store to say that they want to increase sales by 25 percent in July. Also, it isn’t realistic for a swimsuit store that opened in 2005 to say that they want to increase sales by 25 percent in July when another brand new store opened last week right down the street.
Lastly, the T is for timely. It is not possible to achieve a goal when there is no time frame. However, make sure that the time set is also realistic and achievable. By following this acronym, you can achieve your business’ marketing goals.
By Sofia Gonzalez