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How to Optimize your Marketing ROI Using SMART Goals

by David Oeters on April 4, 2019
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Have you ever struggled to calculate the ROI for a campaign?

Sure, we are data-obsessed. You can open a dashboard and show 1,000s of new web visitors. You know the clicks, web page heat maps, opened emails, conversion rates…

But for most of us, a click isn’t revenue generated. A visitor isn’t necessarily a paying customer. That beautiful dashboard with pie charts won’t transform effort into revenue

Did you know? Companies in the United States spent $11.43 billion USD on producing marketing-related data in 2018.

That’s where SMART goals can help. Your goals can unlock the ROI hidden in every effort.

How do SMART Goals and Marketing ROI Connect?

We’ve talked about SMART goals in previous blogs.

SMART goals are: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Timely

SMART goals align marketing efforts on key priorities. Without SMART goals, you risk letting your marketing team focus on low-priority tasks rather than pushing the business forward with objectives that deliver a greater return – the key to your ROI.

4 Ways to Optimize ROI Using SMART Marketing Goals

With the right strategy, you can use SMART goals to optimize and maximize ROI for every campaign. Here’s how:

  • Determine your Expected Return

As you are setting goals, determine your expected return. How much is meeting the goal worth to the business?

Identifying an ROI for your goals is a great way to ensure your marketing efforts are focused on the activities with the highest return – the work that has a real meaning for the business. If a goal doesn’t offer enough of a return, then replace it with another goal with a higher return. Be strategic in your goal setting.

Did you know? According to investor and business speaker John Doerr, people aren’t excited by milestones and measures in a goal, but in the meaning behind the goal. This is the “why” that motivates a team.

  • Measure Progress

SMART goals include measures. Many campaigns fail because no one determined how to measure success. The goal becomes a to-do list, rather than a meaningful activity that grows the business.

Your measures are critical to determining the ROI of a campaign, and tracking progress toward your goals. For example, if you estimate that each new lead is worth $200 to the business, then increasing lead generation by 200 for a quarter should generate $40,000 in revenue.

Use that data to accelerate momentum for the campaign. Graphic data visualization is a great way to track progress toward your goal, enhancing communication and building excitement.

  • Adjust your Strategy

The measures in a SMART goals can also help guide your strategy during a campaign.

As you measure progress toward your SMART goals, you can identify potential problems early and adjust your strategy before it is too late. For example, if your goal is lead generation and you aren’t getting the leads you expect, then look at A/B testing a new CTA. Change things up.

Once you are tracking progress toward a goal, then don’t hesitate to make adjustments if the strategy isn’t working.

  • Evaluate Expense

Your goals can also help in project planning.

Determine the cost for a campaign or goal, then look at the ROI. If the cost is much higher than the ROI, then you have a problem. Don’t throw money away on a project if you aren’t delivering the returns you need.

Sometimes it is better to drop an expensive project if there isn’t enough of a return. You might also look at ways to reduce the cost or adjust the goal. Maybe a smaller campaign, with more modest results, can deliver a higher return for the business. You are generating less revenue, but optimize ROI because you are spending less money.

An ROI for every Marketing Goal

Calculating and measuring the ROI for your marketing efforts isn’t difficult if you set SMART goals.

Consider your goal setting as a process. Don’t be afraid to adjust your goals and strategy. For many, the first draft goals are too easy or too difficult – goals are rarely perfect. It’s more important to get the goals down and start working toward them. Perfection can come later.

Still struggling to get started? Download our SMART Marketing Goals template, with tools that take the pain out of setting goals.

Topics: Digital Marketing, SMART Goals