How to set effective goals for your business

How to set effective goals for your busine, business planner with pens on wooden table

As we enter the New Year, we start to think about setting resolutions. Among the gym goals and learning a new language, how about setting effective goals for your business in 2023? 

Setting effective business goals is an important step as a business owner and manager for a variety of reasons. It can help you to: 

  • Create clear business focus and direction 
  • Motivate your employees 
  • Set targets to work towards 
  • Create benchmarks to measure success against
  • Take control of your business’ direction 

Here are our top tips on how to set effective marketing goals for 2023 as the New Year kicks off. 

1) Use S.W.O.T to see where changes need to be made in your business 

There’s no point in setting goals if you’re not sure what you want to achieve.  

S.W.O.T stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats. By identifying all four of these factors that impacted your business in 2022, you can begin to analyse how to improve and where your business should grow in 2023. 

To analyse the Strengths of your business, look for the parts of your business that are already working and that will likely stay that way across the next year.

When assessing Weaknesses in your business, it is important that you take an unbiased look at the parts of your business hindering growth and that may need some effort to fix.  

Identifying Opportunities is the fun part! Look across the channels, processes, products, or services where your business has the (realistic) potential to grow –  and get brainstorming! 

Finally, pinpoint any Threats that could impact your business across the next year. This could include shifting market trends in your industry, competitors on the horizon, or other, already existing, challenges for your business. 

Once you’ve identified these four points, you can effectively consider what changes you’d like to make in 2023. 

2) Be S.M.A.R.T to ensure your goals are purposeful 

Once you’ve identified where goals need to be set, it’s time to set them.  

SMART goals are a favourite goal setting technique in the business world, and for good reason. Setting Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound goals can help you focus your efforts and increase the chance of successfully completing goals.  

When setting your goals, you should always ensure that the terms of accomplishment are specific. Goals with specific outcomes have a much higher chance of being achieved. 

An example of a specific goal is: 

  • I would like more interstate clients in my portfolio. 

This goal is specific, as it directly specifies the want to grow the number of interstate clients for the business, rather than just a general client base. 

Next, it is always important to set goals that you can measure. This way, you can assess and benchmark your progress.  

An example of a measurable goal is: 

  • I would like 30% more interstate clients in my portfolio than in the previous year. 

This goal is measurable as it sets a quantifiable outcome with a previous number to measure against.  

It’s also important that, as challenging as your goals are, they’re achievable.

If, in the previous year, your portfolio of interstate clients only grew by 5%, then a more achievable goal might be: 

  • I would like 15% more interstate clients in my portfolio than in the previous year. 

With only 5% interstate clients procured in the past year, a 15% goal (x3 more than in the previous year) is more achievable than a 30% goal (x6 more). 

The goal should also be relevant to your business. 

For example, if your company is focusing on building clients in the medical sector, but dialling back on those in the construction industry, then a relevant goal might look like: 

  • I would like 15% more interstate healthcare clients in my portfolio than in the previous year. 

Finally, your SMART goal should be time-bound. There’s no point in setting a goal without a deadline to hit, so make sure you set one in the goal.  

For example: 

  • I would like 15% more interstate healthcare clients in my portfolio by December 2023 than in the previous year. 

Once your goal is SMART, you can start to achieve it.   

3) Benchmark progress across the year 

It’s unlikely you’ll meet your goals unless you’ve set up a system to track and analyse your progress.  

It doesn’t matter how you do it: regular work-in-progress meetings, a colour-coded spreadsheet, or hundreds of sticky notes on the walls as if you’re a cop hunting a serial killer. If you’re actively tracking your goal’s progress across the year, then we say – thumbs up! 👍 

This will help you set (and meet) short-term objectives within your larger goal, stay on track, and stay accountable to yourself and your team. 

This also creates an opportunity to celebrate the smaller achievements within your larger goal, ensuring that you and your team stay motivated through to the very end of the year! 

What are your goals for 2023? If you’re looking for support in hitting your business goals, our Marketing Action Plans can help you create a detailed and trackable basis to make 2023 your biggest (and best) year to date! 

Chat to us today about getting started.

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Alice Kerr

Alice Kerr

Alice is a young marketing and communications professional with a passion for writing and content creation. After completing her Bachelor of Arts and majoring in English and History, Alice spent two years working within the communications and creative industries. She is now enhancing her skills by completing further study with a Graduate Certificate in Strategic Communications and is excited to continue extending this knowledge and passion within her work at Purple Giraffe.

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