How to Set Online Marketing Goals that Actually Benefit Your Company

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles/

All too often businesses set lofty goals, maybe once or twice a year, and then never revisit them. These goals sound like good ideas and maybe even fit into digital marketing strategies already in place, but aren’t ever revisited so they get left behind. To actually benefit from your goals, you need to go about goal setting in a very specific way and then follow some steps to make sure you are actively pursuing your goals.

Set Goals that Fit into Your Business’ Plans

The online marketing goals you set should fit into your business’ overall plans. They should complement what your business is already doing and help your business be more successful.

As you set goals for your online marketing strategies and team, keep your business’ goals in mind. The goals you set should make it possible for your business to meet its goals. For example, if your business has the goal of making a certain profit for the following year, your online marketing goals could be to increase sales and grow the company’s customer base.

Think Realistically

When we’re setting goals, it is easy to get carried away and become overly ambitious. While it is great to be optimistic and to aim high, setting unrealistic goals won’t be much help to your business. If goals are so lofty that team members get discouraged and give up, or feel that they aren’t ever able to accomplish them, your team will stop moving forward.

The best approach is to set goals that inspire your team to push ahead and do better, but aren’t so unrealistic that they are impossible to meet. Then, when you meet your goals you can see what you have accomplished and set another goal, to accomplish even more, advancing your business.

Make Goals Measurable

All your goals should be measurable so you can tell what you have accomplished, what is working and what isn’t. Measurable goals are much more helpful to your business because they will help you understand whether you are being successful and give you figures and information to help you create future plans.

A good example of a measurable goal would be: “Get 600 more Facebook fans in the next 6 months.” This goal has a timeframe and a figure to reach for, so it will be easy to measure your success.

Not all goals will be this easy to measure. For example, a more abstract goal might be something like: “Over the next year, create a stronger brand that results in more awareness in our markets.” This goal still has a timeframe, but brand recognition may need to be measured with things like focus groups and surveys that are conducted once before the goal is set and again at the end of the year.

Set Milestones

Sometimes ambitious goals can seem overwhelming, and without a plan of attack you may not be able to achieve them. Once you have set online marketing goals, set up some milestones that will help you reach them and help you understand what you need to accomplish to be successful.

When you set the goal of getting 600 more Facebook fans in the next six months, you know that you will have to gain 100 new followers each month. This can be your milestone and you can set up tactics that will help you gain those followers.

When you set strategic goals that are realistic and measurable, and when you set milestones that will help you successfully achieve those goals, your business will benefit more than if you were to set some goals at the beginning of the year and then forget about them. Start this approach now by setting aside some time to set goals and finding ways to accomplish them.