Discover how SMART goals can help your marketing team and company achieve business goals effectively.
SMART goals are popular for creating achievable and measurable business or personal goals.
In this article, we’ll take a look at what SMART goals mean, why people use them to achieve desired results, and how SEO and marketing professionals can use them to achieve pre-set goals.
What are SMART goals?
SMART goals mean:
- It can be achieved or obtained
- Time restricted
Each element of a SMART goal is designed to ensure that you have the right framework to achieve the goal. Instead of wishing for the future, create a purposeful plan.
For example, a common goal for most business owners is to increase profits. But it is not a SMART goal because of its lack of specificity – it has nothing specific to strive for or measure.
We’ll dive deeper into the components of creating a SMART goal, but first, let’s discuss why.
Why do we use SMART goals?
According to a study by CoSchedule, marketing professionals who plan are three times more likely to report success than those who don’t plan ahead.
This would explain why companies set SMART goals for reasons other than just boosting revenue.
Examples of SMART goals
The following examples illustrate the use of SMART goals to reduce environmental impact and increase diversity and inclusion.
IBM uses SMART goals to help the environment by committing to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and increasing energy efficiency. Here are some of her items.
- Using 75% of IBM’s electricity worldwide by renewable energy by 2025 and 90% by 2030.
- Reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 65% by 2025, using 2010 as the base year, with adjustments for capture and distribution.
- Achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 with remaining emissions of 350,000 metric tons or CO2.
- Implementing at least 3,000 energy conservation projects to avoid consumption of 275,000 megawatt-hours from 2021 to 2025.
- Improve average data center cooling efficiency by 20% by 2025
McDonald’s uses SMART goals to reduce the environmental impact of its restaurants on the planet. Among these goals you will find the following:
- Reduce emissions from McDonald’s restaurants and offices by 36% by 2030, using 2015 as a baseline.
- Reduce supply chain emissions by 31% by 2030, using 2015 as a baseline.
- Source 100% of guest packaging from renewable, renewable or certified renewable sources by 2025.
Nestlé uses SMART goals for sustainability initiatives to reduce the company’s impact on global resources. Below are examples of his upcoming goals.
- Reduce emissions by 20% by 2025 and reach net zero by 2050, using 2018 as a baseline.
- Use 100% deforestation-free primary supply chains for all products by 2025.
- Use 100 percent recycled or reusable packaging materials by 2025.
- 200 million trees will be planted by 2030.
Salesforce uses SMART goals for hiring diversity and inclusion initiatives. Besides demonstrating current progress, its objectives are as follows:
- A 50 percent increase in the number of Black, Indigenous, Latino, and multiracial employees in the U.S. workforce by the end of 2023.
- At least 40% of the global workforce will consist of women or non-binary employees by the end of 2026.
The Components of SMART Goals and How to Write Them
Now that you know why SMART goals are important and some of the methods brands use them, let’s take a look at how to write them detailing each part of the SMART goal setting process.
A specific goal should be unambiguous – everyone working to achieve the goal should know exactly what the goal means without the need for further context or explanation.
When you create a specific goal, you must clearly define the goal, what, why, who, and where. What specific goal do you want to achieve, who will help you, and where will the goal be?
How can you add specificity to your marketing team’s goals? Here are some examples.
- Increase organic search traffic in your e-commerce store by 25%.
- Increased click-through rate (CTR) for the top product page by 15%.
- Increase Instagram followers by 50%
A measurable goal is a goal that is measurable, allowing you to track your progress and know when the goal has been achieved. Specific numbers around the target should be clearly defined.
How can you make your marketing team’s goals measurable? Here are some examples.
- Increase website visits from 1000 to 3000 per month from social media.
- Reduced bounce rate for blog posts from 50% to 40%.
- Increased email open rates from 23% to 30%.
Utilizing your skills and resources, you can attain a goal that is within your reach. It should specify the resources that will be used to achieve the goal.
How can you achieve your marketing team’s goals? Here are some examples.
- Increase mentions of our products on social media by 50% by leveraging our brand ambassador network.
- Increase the number of blog posts published weekly by one to two by using excerpts from your weekly podcast episodes.
- Reduce site speed for main product pages by 2 seconds by optimizing large images on pages.
A relevant purpose is critical to your company’s survival and aligns with your company’s mission statement and values. It will explain why the goal is important to your company.
How can you make your marketing team’s goals relevant? Here are some examples.
- Increase organic search traffic to the main services page by 20% to ensure the sales team meets its revenue goals.
- Increased brand exposure on TikTok by 50% to attract Gen Z users.
- Increased e-commerce store links from blogs by 50% to drive referral traffic to popular product sales pages and increase sales.
A firm goal includes a specific deadline for achieving the goal and provides a timeline to ensure accountability.
It will also ensure that all participants remain motivated to accomplish what needs to be done to succeed.
How can you make your marketing team’s goals time-bound? Below are some previous examples that have been modified to keep up with the times.
- Increased website visits from social media by 1,000 to 3,000 per month by the end of the second quarter.
- Increase the number of blog posts published weekly by one to two by the end of 2023 using weekly podcast episode scripts.
- Increase organic search traffic to the main services page by 20% in Q1 to ensure your sales team meets Q2 revenue goals.
SMART goals can help marketing teams create goals that can realistically be achieved within a specific time frame with the resources they are working with.
Create goals with specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound components, and take time to track your progress and review results after the deadline.
The more you analyze your goals and results, the more you can refine your future SMART goals for overall growth and success.