The holiday season has fiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiinally gone along its merry way.
Don’t get me wrong, I had a grand ole time, just like you ;—) No bah humbug here! But truth be told, I’m pleased as punch to get back to work and back on track.
Now, as I mentioned in my last post, this time of year is all about New Year’s Resolutions.
And what are New Year’s Resolutions, really??? In a word, GOALS.
In the past, I’ve had an uneasy relationship with the annual “goal setting” exercise. It’s sort of pet peeve that I’ve preached about a TON on this blog over the years.
The Value of Benchmarking
But last year, I fiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiinally conceded the value of establishing goals. At least from a Benchmarking perspective. Benchmarks relating to revenue, new client acquisitions and repeat business generation you aim to reach in a given year are a great yardstick by which to measure growth year over year. Not to mention gaging the efficacy of your marketing strategies and tactics.
But Here’s The Problem With Goals…
A whole heaping helping of credible research shows the vast major of New Year’s Resolutions (AKA goals) are NEVER realized.
Now, there are all kinds of reasons why people fail to achieve their goals. And this isn’t a psychology blog, so we won’t delve into the pathology behind this. Suffice it to say, the figures show it’s a considerable and consistent problem for people of all stripes. And that includes small business owners.
So, How DO You Achieve Your Annual Marketing Goals?
The board based failure on the annual goal achievement front is why I’ve always eschewed goal-setting in favor of…
Developing the Marketing Habit!
How do you go about fostering this all-important habit?
Here are three toward steps to making marketing a habitual activity…
Set REASONABLE Goals
In baseball, loads of players chase the homerun title. Along the way, those swinging bats rack up heaps and heaps of strikeouts. And in the end, there’s only one homerun king each season.
Meanwhile, plenty of players thrive hitting singles, doubles, and triples.
The point being, swinging for the fences in the goal-setting department can leave you with a pie-in-the-sky benchmark you’ll NEVER reach.
So, be sensible and set reasonable marketing goals you’re confident you can achieve.
Make a Regular Appointment — With YOURSELF!
Open up your Outlook, iCal or whatever jazzy new app you used to schedule your life… No, I mean right now. Go ahead. I’ll wait…
Back with us? Great! Now set a reoccurring appointment to work exclusively on whatever marketing projects you outlined as goals for this calendar year.
I’d like to see you set a daily appointment. But at a minimum, it needs to be weekly. And if you’re REALLY serious about developing the marketing habit and achieving this year’s marketing goals, you should make it at least bi-weekly.
I’m sure I don’t need to tell you, but policing one’s self is an IMPOSSIBLE task.
Procrastination, ambivalence + apathy, and just good ole fashion laziness are traps we ALL fall into at times. And the first time we step into any of these pitfalls, the easier (not harder) it is to fall in again (and again and again).
The solution? Find an accountability partner. If can be a business associate or colleague, a friend or family member, or even a significant other or spouse.
Whoever you choose, just make sure it’s someone who’s comfortable getting tough with you and demanding performance.
Need Help Setting AND Achieving Your Annual Marketing Goals
Looking for a little guidance on setting this year’s marketing benchmarks? Or just need a kick in the pantalones to get started? Drop by my Google+ page and we’ll get you in gear!