It’s all set – you started the business, you have the product, now all there’s left is to plan having it introduced to the world. A connection between social media users and you will help in creating an identity and standing out, which is why it’s best to get people engaged. Typically, you will want to present your business in a consistent, unique and upfront way and for that it is of utmost importance to plan ahead and know from the beginning the shape you want your identity to have in time as well as the consumer persona you are aiming to reach.
Having your goals set from the beginning will help on the long run – of course, there will be a lot of changes to be made along the way, but trial and error is the only way of learning what works best for your business. A well-tailored plan will ensure your progress regardless of the small moments each business experiences, those chaotic, hectic moods where a leader needs to bring people together so that everyone is focused on the plan. Here’s the first steps that need to be considered:
Planning made easy as one-two-three
- Be SMART about your goals – prioritize the parts that need improvement. Working SMART means going after five characteristics your goals should have, in the sense that all of them need to be Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Time-bound. This will help you remember what you’re after, but we’ll get more in detail about that later on. Until then you gotta…
2. Choose your marketing weapon – small businesses can easily get lost in the sea of online variety, which is why it’s important to know what marketing options you have available for your plan. Typically, you can increase your traffic through organic searches, direct traffic, referral traffic, social traffic, Google My Business and paid traffic
3. Make it personal – consumers need a human touch that will assure them they are not just being influenced by a robot in choosing what to purchase. Needing one-to-one interaction is normal, especially during these times, so when using social media, make sure you use a friendly, clear tone adapted to your audience rather than industry-specific instructions.
All in all, we can promise these steps won’t be just that other brick in the wall. Instead, each step will serve as the foundation for building your brand’s skyscraper as efficiently as possible. If you aim for the highest level your business can reach and are determined to get there in no time, have you started working on your plan yet? Now, in order to fully understand the importance of the steps we’ve traced for your journey through the digital world, let’s look again at some of the concepts behind them:
Planning made using SMART goals
We know it’s difficult to maintain yourself focused when you have a thousand of responsibilities to deal with – which is exactly why you need to be Specific about what you are after. This is so that your path towards fulfilling that goal will be clear and concise. The more specific you are, the easier it will be to see what method needs to be used for achieving the goal.
To be able to schedule your plan in an efficient manner, you will require a way of splitting the main goal on an axis, so that your progress can be Measurable as days go by – this will also keep you motivated as smaller steps still represent progress. You can quantify your goal any way you prefer, from numbers to hours, simply make sure you use measurable, trackable milestones, be it a number of followers you want your accounts to have, a number of new products you would like to deliver or simply an increase of visits on your website.
Another step that can help you in staying motivated is having realistic expectations – just as you want your goal to be clear and easy to measure its progress, you want it to be possible. Especially after setting a time frame, you need to know your effort is put to good use for a purpose that is Attainable – consider what would happen to your motivation if you always were to set impossible goals: have you any limitations that would impede your goal? It’s always best to not bite off more than you can chew, especially when we’re talking time that’s vital to you!
Would you set a goal just for the fun of it? Not unless you’ve got time to waste, of course – you need a real benefit attached to your goal so it stays Relevant. Think of why this would be important for your business, choose a key benefit and use it for the motivation you’ll need along the road: everyone needs to see the bigger picture in order to grasp the importance of every small step – each milestone and action involved in your plan will directly influence your progress and help in turning your plan into a reality.
Working for your goal needs to be efficient, so it is best to consider every small step along the way. When setting these, you can create a Time-bound schedule so it is easier to track all things along the way. Of course your goal will have a date up to which you will like it to have been fulfilled as good goals don’t stretch into infinity. Your goals need time-related parameters built in, so that everyone involved in the process knows the pace they need to have. Moreover, you need to give yourself the time to also make adjustments as you go based on what you experience along the way.
Planning just turned easy-peasy!
Now that you have grasped the importance of SMART goals, all that is left to do is that you need to apply these to your team: each goal will become more significant once understood. What is more, you will find things running more smoothly as working SMART requires little training and less expensive tools that you might deem necessary for fulfilling your goals. Bringing consistency inside your organization means your business will always be improving while still maintaining everyone involved focused and motivated.
When planning the way you interact with the digital world, you will want your actions to be regular as clockwork. It’s quite predictable that a user who checks out your social media accounts and sees no recent posts will assume you have lost interest in promoting your product or have even gone out of business. Now, perhaps if you’re selling a product which is rather unique across the web, they will take a second look before trying to look somewhere else, but are you willing to take that risk?