Good goals vs bad goals

Good goals vs bad goals

Yes, there are such things as bad goals. How can that be? Take these two examples:

  • Goal 1: Increase sales of my widgets.
  • Goal 2: Increase sales of my widgets by 20% by the end of the year.

Can you tell which one is a good goal and which one is a bad goal? Of course, you can. The second goal is more specific and precise. It gives you something to measure your success by. This is because it uses components of a framework called SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-bound ). Sometimes it is a little harder to tell a bad goal from a good goal. How about these examples:

  • Goal 1: Increase our email database by 500 recipients by the end of the month.
  • Goal 2: Increase our email database by 5,000 recipients by the end of the month.

These both have measurable goals – both in number and in timing. So, which one is good and which one is bad? It is a trick question. Either one of them could be good, depending on your business. If your business currently has 2,000 names in your email list, maybe 500 new recipients is a good number. However, if your business currently has 100,000 names, 500 is probably a bad goal. Why? Your goals need to be proportional to your current situation. The company with 100,000 names on their email list should set a more worthy goal of adding 5,000 recipients. 

Another consideration is the potential audience pool. If you are in a very niche industry and your email list already contains 90% of the potential pool of possible targets, then perhaps a small goal number is warranted. You also need to match your goal with your potential resources. If you create goals that will require a $1 million marketing budget to achieve, but your budget is only $100,000, you aren’t going to meet those goals. You are setting yourself up for failure if you don’t match your goals with all of these factors.

This may not be what you want to hear, but it is what you need to understand in order to be effective at any type of marketing, let alone the specific niche of content marketing. 

Data Rules the World (but not the way you think it does)

Data Rules the World (but not the way you think it does)

As humans, we are unique beings. We have a brain and a heart. We have emotions and feelings.

We use our senses to help us make decisions about a person when we meet them. What do they look like? Are they dressed nicely or are they disheveled? Do they smile? How hard do they shake your hand? Do they look you in the eye?

We use past experiences. Do they remind you of someone else that you had a good or bad experience with? Do they work for a company you like or one that you don’t?

We use other information. In what context are you meeting them? Did someone else give you a heads up about this person?

We use all of this data to make a determination about another person. And it is the same with businesses. Our audience uses all of these things to make a determination about whether to do business with companies. What will they think of you? Think of your business ‘courting’ new customers.

    • What is your appearance? Is your website neat and user-friendly? Or is it sloppy and loud?
    • How do you sound? Do you use colloquialisms in your marketing? Or do you sound like a legal contract?
    • Do you look people in the eye? Do you meet people where they are? Or do you come at them from an angle?
    • How hard do you shake their hand? Are you ‘in their face’? Or are you more subtle?
    • Do you smile? Is your marketing light and welcoming? Or dark and off-putting?
    • Did a friend tell your customer target about you? Do you know who your company’s advocates are? And are you engaging with them?

These are all things you need to think about when you are creating your marketing. And it is ok to get a second opinion. We all get tunnel vision about our own businesses and our own work.

If you are looking for that second opinion, contact me to learn how I can help.