10 SMART Goals in Marketing (and Why They're Important)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Updated July 5, 2022 | Published July 7, 2021

Updated July 5, 2022

Published July 7, 2021

Related: How To Create Specific Goals

Sinéad gives examples of powerful, defined goals that can help you visualize and paint a picture of what accomplishing your goals would look like.

Effective SMART goals can help marketing teams clarify their objectives, identify areas of improvement and create successful advertising campaigns. By using SMART goals in your marketing efforts, you may increase your overall revenue and improve customer relationships. It's important to learn how you can apply this strategy to marketing to see if this method best suits your needs. In this article, we define SMART goals in marketing, explain why they're important and list 10 marketing goals with examples using the SMART method.

What are SMART goals in marketing?

SMART goals in marketing are goal-setting techniques that teams can use to create actionable marketing plans for supporting the company's long-term objectives, including sales and customer engagement tactics. SMART is an acronym that stands for specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and timely. These goals provide a structured guideline for helping a marketing team assess the most effective course of action. SMART goals can help establish the larger purpose of a team's marketing practices and further develop its brand identity.

For instance, you can apply SMART objectives to an email campaign. Consider the following steps:

  • Set specific goals. Create clear and defined objectives for the campaign. To do so, you can add a statistical value to the statement, like pledging to expand the number of emails the team sends per day by 15%.

  • Decide how to measure your goals. Choose what performance benchmarks you want to use for your objectives. For instance, you can calculate if there's a significant change in customer response to the emails sent in the campaign.

  • Check that your goals are achievable. Use reliable data to assess your objectives and determine how attainable they are. To do so, you can study statistical information from a previous campaign to learn how the team maintains its email quota.

  • Evaluate if your goals are realistic. Have the team verify whether their current strategies can best help them achieve the objectives for the email campaign. You can also devise new protocols if necessary.

  • Determine the timeline of your process. Create an actionable timeline that aligns with the size of your goals. You can also set short- or long-term objectives to better prioritize your steps.

Related: How To Write SMART Goals (With Examples)

Why is setting SMART goals in marketing important?

Consider the following reasons it's important for a marketing team to set SMART goals:

  • Develops team cohesion: Marketing teams can discuss the terms of the goal to better develop a unified purpose for their objectives.

  • Guides your data collection protocols: You may gather various data to achieve your marketing goals, and the SMART method can help you determine how to use it.

  • Helps the team prioritize tasks: Understanding the parameters of the goal-setting process can help the team understand the relevance of each task and increase overall productivity.

  • Tracks your progress over time: SMART goals can serve as smaller steps in a larger process, allowing teams to develop more organized structures.

Read more: SMART Goals: Definitions and Examples

10 SMART goals for marketing teams

Consider the following examples of marketing goals and different ways to represent them using the SMART method:

1. Introduce new products and services

Marketing teams are primarily responsible for promoting a company's products and services to their clientele. You can use the SMART method to conceptualize new ways to collect customer data and plan new content, including commercial advertisements, product demonstrations and targeted blog posts. By creating a systematic goal-making process, you can learn which marketing strategies work best for a team to accomplish each step.

As an example of how to use SMART goals when introducing new products and services, consider a company that plans to increase daily revenue by 6% through introducing a product at trade shows. To measure this specific goal, they determine that each trade show can boost their revenue by 2% in a month. Then, they discuss their resources and decide to attend one trade show per month, meaning it's achievable and realistic to accomplish their goal in three months. After, they set a preparation timeline.

Related: 12 Tips for Creating SMART Goals

2. Increase website interaction

Marketing teams often plan how to increase the number of people who visit a company's website. You can set SMART goals to learn which strategies are effective and monitor the rate of website traffic. By discussing each aspect of this process using the SMART method, you can increase a brand's presence on search engines and find new sites to host advertisements online.

For example, consider a brand with a specific goal of receiving a URL ranking of five or higher on target web pages by the end of the fiscal year. To determine an achievable and realistic strategy, they analyze their website and decide that increased SEO keyword usage and updated content once a week can prompt higher rankings. After analyzing their budget and personnel resources, they decide this goal requires a three-month-long timeline to implement a successful new website process.

3. Use social media marketing strategies

Marketing teams sometimes use social media platforms to promote a company's brand and engage with potential customers. Using SMART goals, you can determine the best ways to advertise content using analytics and respond to comments from customers. You can also create an accurate timeline for social media campaigns, which are a key aspect of this type of marketing. By understanding the overall purpose of a campaign, teams can better plan each process task.

Consider a social media marketing team using the SMART method to increase their follower base by 20% in a year. To measure this specific goal, they review analytics to determine areas of improvement. Through surveys, they learn followers respond positively when the team publishes three articles a day using topics with relevant metadata. They examine their data to confirm their initial goal is both realistic and achievable according to their current strategies, and determine a detailed timeline.

Related: 9 Types of Media Marketing

4. Find new leads

Leads are people who are interested in the company's products or services and might become new customers. You can set SMART goals to help increase the rate of identified leads and keep them as long-term customers. By evaluating your current strategies, the team can plan more effective messaging campaigns and determine how to use customer data for targeted marketing content.

As an example of how to use SMART goals to find new leads, consider a brand that plans to increase purchasing rates by 7% in one month. To measure this specific goal, the marketing team reviews customer responses and discovers that many clients found the brand through influencer promotions. Then, they adjust their timeline to three months to ensure the goal is achievable and realistic using their resources.

5. Maintain customer satisfaction

Related: How To Create Achievable Goals

Sinéad explains how to craft achievable goals and gives examples, helping you pursue purpose, meaning, and passion in your work and life.

Marketing teams typically cultivate relationships with customers, because happy customers often recommend a brand within their social circles. You can use a SMART goal-setting process to evaluate your customer engagement protocols and inspire loyalty. By reflecting on your customer service practices using a guideline, you can find new ways to personalize advertisements and conduct more successful sales events.

For example, consider a brand that plans to increase the rate of client referrals by 11% in the next fiscal year. To measure this specific goal, the marketing team analyzes data and learns that client referrals increase directly after their service receives a positive national rating. They examine their sales strategies and previous email campaigns to determine which strategies may be more effective. After, they adjust the value in their initial goal to make it more achievable and realistic according to the timeline.

6. Get more online reviews

Many marketing teams strategize ways to increase the number of online reviews they receive. You can use the SMART method to determine the best digital tools to use for encouraging customers to write them. By planning a comprehensive process, the team can spend more time on incorporating customer reviews or using the material in promotional content.

As an example of how to use SMART goals to get more online reviews, consider a company with a specific goal to receive 45 online reviews on secondary seller sites in six months. To measure this goal, the team assesses similar brands and discovers that customers seem to prefer writing reviews on a company's website. They examine their data and decide to create a response portal on their home website. Because of the shift in focus, they adjust their timeline and accordingly adjust their goal number to be more achievable and realistic.

7. Increase in-person promotions

Marketing teams sometimes use in-person tactics to increase awareness of a company's products and services. Using SMART goals, you can compare its effectiveness to digital tools and plan sales events in physical locations. By using the SMART method, you can learn the most useful strategies for promoting content in local areas.

For example, consider a brand with a specific goal of doubling overall revenue in a year using a new subscription service. To measure this, the marketing team tracks the rate of new subscribers, discovering that more people buy the service after the team appears at conferences. They decide to increase their presence at conferences to increase subscriptions. Before proceeding, however, they evaluate their budget to ensure their initial goal is both achievable and realistic. After, they adjust the goal to increasing overall revenue by 10% in six months so they can create a more accurate timeline.

8. Build an email audience

Marketing teams create email subscriber lists to promote brands. You can use the SMART method to study customer trends and optimize email schedules. By evaluating your strategies using SMART goals, you can determine effective methods for communicating information to subscribers and discover new ways to increase the number of people on the list.

For example, consider a company that plans to increase the rate of sales from email subscribers by 2%. To measure this specific goal, the marketing team analyzes data from their subscribers and discovers that offering discounts often increases the rate of sales. Then, they realize that increasing the objective to 5% is still achievable and realistic. After, they establish a timeframe of six months and assign tasks.

9. Re-brand a company

Marketing teams often re-brand companies and their products to grow the business. You can set SMART goals to create a new brand or image and learn which tasks to prioritize, such as updating website design. By using the SMART method, you can streamline this long-term process and spend more time creating strategies for expanding your clientele.

For example, consider a company planning to triple public awareness of its new brand identity in seven months. To measure this specific goal, the marketing team reviews customer survey data to identify notable patterns and trends. After discovering that article content increases revenue, they decide to post blog articles to promote the brand. They evaluate their publishing strategies, then determine that an achievable and realistic goal is publishing three blog posts every week for seven months.

10. Establish leadership in an industry

Marketing teams can help companies become trusted providers of a service or product in an industry. You can use the SMART method to optimize the company's website content for answering customer inquiries and help them form relationships with key influencers in their specific industry. By creating a comprehensive goal-setting process, you can increase the possibility that customers prefer a particular company's services instead of another.

As an example of how to use SMART goals to establish leadership in an industry, consider a company with a specific goal to promote industry-related news to their customer base at an increased rate of 4%. To measure this process, the marketing team determines that publishing four articles per month can help them accomplish this goal. They evaluate relevant data to ensure the goal is both achievable and realistic, then establish a viable timeline for increasing the rate.

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