How Important are Marketing Goals and Objectives to Your Business’ Success?
Doing something without a vision or a proper plan is like building a product that no one wants. You not only waste your precious time and resources at building it but also end up disappointed at its impending failure. And maybe even lose your volition to move on and continue. Which is why it is absolutely important to create a structure that involves setting up specific marketing goals and objectives for your business.
Yours may be a fledgling startup that aspires to prepare the world for the future. Or an established organization with its roots already clung tight to the earth. But, without a solid marketing plan that defines a set of objectives and the higher goals, your business will become vulnerable. Today, the importance of marketing in business success trumps that of everything else that was relevant a decade ago. All thanks to the rise of the Internet.
So, what exactly is a marketing goal? What are marketing objectives? How are they different from each other? And what is the importance of corporate and marketing objectives in an information age where the customer is not only king but also minister with tons of information in his kitty? How can you define them? And how to set your marketing objectives that will lead to ultimate business success? Let’s find out one by one.
What are Marketing Goals and Objectives?
Ever heard the story of a merchant who sold demand to create a higher demand? He used to sell vases of flowers in the market area of his hometown. The vases were hand-crafted and so beautiful that anyone would buy them to add some jazz to their living room. Through word of mouth, the vases’ popularity grew quickly and so did their demand in the marketplace.
But no one realized that the merchant’s primary product was not the vase but the flowers, which would wither away in less than 7 days. He sold the vases to create a constant and never-ending demand for flowers, which would help his business flourish even when he runs out of vases.
In this fictional anecdote of an entrepreneur marveling at his job, the marketing goal is that of creating a never-ending demand for something that he can supply. And how he reaches that goal is through a series of objectives – getting the vases made, their logistics, marketing them, and maintaining their popularity. The objectives, when completed one by one, lead to satisfaction of the business goal.
Essentially, a marketing goal is the higher point of a journey that you reach through target-specific objectives set up as per the needs and conditions of your business. An online store selling smartphones can have the goal of reaching 100,000 visitors per month. Here, some of the common marketing objectives will be:
- setting up the website
- optimizing the content for success in organic and paid search to establish online visibility
- setting up the e-store and a secure payment gateway to reinforce trust among consumers
- creating and running a blog to further improve visibility.
A series of objectives typically lead to the achievement of a goal. But how do they differ exactly? Where do these marketing objectives come from? And what should you pay more attention to? What is the importance of a marketing plan in business? Why are goals and objectives important? The answers to these questions are a bit tricky, as you will find out.
The Difference Between Marketing Goals and Objectives
Observe the hierarchy of business goals below. To match to the requirements of today’s always-online culture, we will focus more on online marketing whilst talking about the impact of inbound strategies.
Today, each and every successful organization in the world has vision and mission statements. The former can be called the highest point of a marketing journey, followed by individual goals. These goals can be achieved by executing specific objectives which are measured through project-based key performance indicators (KPIs).
In this regard, the purpose of marketing objectives and strategies is to achieve short-term and long-term business goals to ultimately drive the business forward. The initial period of any campaign has to give weightage to these elements depending upon the final goal. The importance of your business objectives should influence the activities and their planning.
For example, managing and maintaining local online citations for your business can be considered as an object to your main goal of marketing: achieving a traffic target. If your aim is to reach 100 citations overall, measuring it week-after-week can be a KPI activity. Tools like Enfusen’s proprietary Citations Manager allows you to keep a track of this number so that you can utilize your time on more important tasks.
Metrics are the lowest measurable parameters in the hierarchy of marketing. The search volume of a keyword that you want to blog about can be considered a metric, and so can be the search engine results page (SERP) rank and the clickthrough rate (CTR) after you are done blogging.
It is also wise to define the vast difference between business and marketing objectives before every digital campaign. In simple words, the latter will collectively help in the achievement of the former. And it is up to all the teams of your business to equally contribute in the interpretation of these individual business and marketing objectives.
Marketing Objectives Lead to Goals
The difference between a goal and an objective is essentially in what they lead to. Marketing objectives in a marketing plan beget goals and that is where your focus as a digital manager should be. All the parameters will seek your attention but what you actually pay it to and what you leave for technology and automation is up to you.
An even simpler way to look at it is this: your goal may be to establish your business as an industry leader in your field while your main objective of marketing may be to gain a certain percentage of the market share. Your marketing objective should be designed to support your company’s specific goals for the future. Here, the importance of your business goals precedes that of your marketing goals.
However, in some cases, the thin line between a marketing goal and an objective can completely disappear. IBM’s recent acquisition of Red Hat can be seen as both a goal and an objective for both the parties, but we like to see it as the latter where the pioneer of computing is looking at taking over the technology sphere through this new sibling.
All of which brings us to the question of how.
How can a manager be in control of all these parameters without losing focus? From SERP ranks to conversion rate to optimizing content to monitoring advertisement spend and revenue – where all do you move your head without causing lapses in the cycle? Through the use of technology, of course.
Achieving Marketing Objectives Without Breaking a Sweat
One of the oldest concepts of defining goals and objectives is to go the SMART way. And it is relieving to find that it is still as relevant as it was when it was first adopted. Together with assistance from online tools and resources, you can easily minimize your load when you think about marketing goals and objectives. Here’s how…
SMART goals are those that provide you with an easy way to ensure that you start running in the morning and don’t get lost on the way back home. When you are creating your goals, make sure they are:
- Sensible – Have real expectations and be specific in what you’re striving for (e.g. ranking on page 1 for a competitive keyword as compared to ranking at #1 early in the campaign)
- Measurable – You must have a way to determine if your efforts are successful (e.g.: SERP monitoring, automatic reporting mechanisms, etc.)
- Achievable – Stay within the realm of possibilities (e.g.: outranking a Wikipedia article as opposed to a website with a domain authority of thirty)
- Realistic – Avoid setting objectives that are too difficult to accomplish (e.g.: outranking a Wikipedia article which is at #1)
- Time-specific – Make sure that you frame the goals within a reasonable amount of time. Give yourself a definite date to keep yourself motivated (e.g.: 100 citations in a period of 3 months.)
By applying this formula, you will be able to create smart digital marketing objectives and goals that are not only attainable but also profitable. But, make sure that you assign proper tools for these activities so that you can use your time for measuring the output rather than for execution.
The answer to the question “What are smart objectives in marketing?” can be further simplified through this infographic.
Online Tools to the Rescue
Tools like Google’s Keyword Planner and Google Trends are life-saving apps for any digital marketer. They not only extract important data that you can use to charge and materialize your marketing strategy but also help simplify the achievement of objectives of that strategy.
For example, let’s have a look at an example in the online gaming community. If you are a business in the online video gaming sector and want to produce blog content about trending topics, Google Trends is where you can head to first to get a broad picture of the current as well as the historical scenario in terms of online search popularity.
The following comparison graph of worldwide interest for two games – Fortnite and PUBG – is pulled from Google Trends. A content creator can pull more such insights from the application to devise a strategy that would garner the most interest and engagement from his target audience.
A great way to pull off some great content marketing is to use Trends data to produce and promote content when a specific topic garners more interest. We searched for the term “air conditioner” in Google Trends and found that the interest in the United States peaks in the month of June every year – when it is the hottest.
A good way to use this information for an air conditioner sale or repairing business would be to create and push content on blog, website, and social media in and around this time. That will ensure maximum return on investment. Google Trends research can act as a subtask for the main objective of content creation and publishing.
Content, the King, Calls the Shots in Marketing Objectives
Another example of technology helping further down in the objective in executing search optimization is Enfusen’s native content optimization platform. Ask any content creator out there about the struggles of creating original content that is both catchy and useful to the users at the same time and you will receive a stare back.
Does the concept of comparing your content with hundreds of thousands of existing landing pages on the web to see what elements lead to the most traffic interest you? That is basically what our native platform does. It assigns a score based on elements such as meta title and description, heading tags, content density, and several others to help you keep a track of the quality of your content. Both from search bot and user perspectives.
It is when you know what needs to be done can you effectively manage your smart digital marketing objectives. High-quality and unique content can aid in your quest to grow your business exponentially.
But, how do you compete with giant competitors who are out there pulling all the known tricks in the book to gain maximum real estate on search? As of July 2018, close to 12 billion monthly searches are carried out on Google. How do you get a chunk of those searchers to find your business?
You turn to artificial intelligence and data science. That’s how…
Setting Marketing Objectives Based on Priority
Once you have a vision for your business and have identified long-term goals to get closer to that vision, it is time to prioritize your business and marketing objectives. Since every business is different and has dynamic requirements at every stage of the marketing cycle, it can be challenging to set priorities. Setting marketing objectives can also become an uphill task if you don’t have clarity about your end goals. But, not if you have the magical helping hand of artificial intelligence.
In addition to our content optimization platform, the one feature that sets the Enfusen framework apart is the built-in task manager. It analyses your website and other relevant data that you feed into it to prioritize your marketing objectives. You can drive your primary goal by giving precedence to those that matter the most. This, to an extent, can even mean a substitution of goal-based project management.
For example, if your main goal of marketing is to increase the visibility of your company website, the task manager will set priority to important tasks like technical audit, content optimization, and off-page SEO. You don’t have to peek into those countless online forums to see what matters anymore.
Making the right use of automation and advanced technology is the key to defining marketing aims and objectives and achieving them SMARTly.
When establishing your marketing objectives, ensure that they don’t just push your business to the next level but also produce tangible results that you are expecting. First understand the importance of goals and objectives of your business and then set out to the planning phase.
Before you commit your ideas to paper, ask yourself the important question: are you – as an individual running a business – ready for such an undertaking? You may be able to push your business further and further, but you must also be prepared to deal with the results as and when they come in.
And the best way to do that is to adopt the concept of SMART goals with your business aspirations. If you have carefully considered your marketing aims and objectives to align with your inbound marketing strategies and you’re ready to go the extra mile, you will find success.
Let artificial intelligence help you get seen on search, check out our powerful all-in-one local marketing platform today. And make setting up marketing goals and objectives of your business a lot easier.