Let’s take this one step and a time – today we’re just going to tackle the big picture stuff. First up, setting SMART goals and objectives. And I don’t mean intelligent, although that helps, what I mean is S.M.A.R.T. = Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Timely. Before we dive into the full explanation, let’s get some definitions out of the way:
Goal: A desired result.
Objective: The quantitative formulation of a goal (we’re talking numbers here – how much, how long etc.)
For example if your goal is – “Increase blog traffic” your objective might be – “Get to 10,000 monthly page views by June.” Got it? Great! Now let’s get into making those goals and objectives SMART!
Here’s where we go back to journalism 101 – we need the 5 W’s of your objective. Who, What, When, Where, Why. Let’s use the traffic goal again:
Who: Me (and any blog team member I might have)
What: Increase site traffic to 10,000 page views a month
When: By the end of June 2012
Where: On my blog! (easy!)
Why: So my blog looks more inviting to the brands I want to be working with.
Make sure you can measure the results of your objectives – in real numbers. This helps you understand if you’ve achieved your goals. Ask questions like: How much? How many? How will I know I made it?
Figure out HOW you are going to measure too – are you going to use a site counter? Google analytics?
When you are setting your goals and objectives – make sure they are something you can actually get to. This does not mean you should sell yourself short – it means if you just started out and your goal is a book deal, you have to set attainable steps to get there. Don’t expect to get there in a day – figure out the stepping stones that will get you there!
Make sure that you are both willing and able to reach your goals. If you want to shoot for the stars – shoot away! But be sure you are willing to work hard to get there! If you can dream it – you can do it – but are you really going to be able to put in the time it will take? (Of course you are, you’re here right!?)
Give yourself a time frame for your goal. You want that book deal right? When do you want it? Someday isn’t going to cut it here. By November of 2013 – there’s a timely goal. Now set up some objectives to get you there – increase your traffic by June, grow your audience engagement to 20 comments a post by August, reach out to 4 publishers in January etc.
Now that you’re feeling SMART, get your tactics in line. (Definition time!)
Tactic: The tools you use to meet your goals and objectives
Tactics can include Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook, outreach to other bloggers (via IFB, of course!), advertising on other blogs, guest post, etc. Set up a few tactics that will help you reach your objectives. You can even use IFB’s Editorial calendar to map out your plan!
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