A couple months ago, we posted a blog with our top five tips to improve your fourth quarter marketing.

One of those tips was about how important it is to write down goals and how writing down goals means you’re more likely to accomplish your goals.

Another essential part to creating goals that you can accomplish is to make your goals SMART.

A SMART goal is:

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Achievable
  • Results-focused
  • Time-bound

Specific

In order for your goal to be specific, you must clarify the what, how, and why of achieving the goal.

Clarifying these aspects not only makes the goal specific, but it keeps you and your team on top of achieving the goal.

Measurable

Having your goals be measurable allows you to track them, and to know how successful you are.

Some goals will have more than one measurable metric. For example, your goal could say that by the end of 2018, you want to attract 100 new customers and make 500 sales. In this case, the other measurable metrics would be 100 new customers and 500 sales.

Achievable

Goals need to be achievable. While you should be challenged by your goals, you don’t want to make them impossible. Most goals are achievable when you carefully plan out the steps that need to be taken to accomplish the goal.

It is especially important to make the goal achievable. If the goal immediately seems unachievable, most of the time you won’t even try to complete it.

Goals are achievable when you have the resources, knowledge, skill, and determination to complete the goal. Let’s go back to our goal and evaluate what we need for it to be achievable.

Results-Focused

One thing to remember while thinking of goals is to focus on the results. If you think about the reasons or benefits of accomplishing the goal, you’re more likely to complete it.

According to the University of Virginia, your goal should ultimately focus on the outcome, and not the activities it takes to get you there.

While the activities are important, if you get too caught up in them, they will distract you from accomplishing the goal.

Time-Bound

Your goals need to have a time-frame. Without one, your goal is unlikely to be completed or provide a good outcome.

A sense of urgency when completing tasks will help keep you focused and able to make your goal a reality.

Making your goal time-bound will also allow you to create a time-frame or schedule. A schedule is beneficial because you can track your progress and break down your goal into sections of work that can be completed at different times.

If you’re having trouble starting with a SMART goal, that’s okay! It can take some time for them to come naturally.

Instead, write down your goal as is and then review this post. You can add each feature as you go through this post, and at the end, you’ll have your own SMART goal.