Ask these 3 questions when setting marketing objectives for 2019.You may be thinking, “How am I going to set marketing objectives for 2019 when my leadership team hasn’t even defined business goals?” Good question.
Any solid marketing plan should start with not only an outline of the company goals for the year ahead – but also an evaluation of what marketing objectives were achieved in the previous year. As history teaches us, before we can move forward, we must evaluate and learn from the past.
This is a step that can be done before 2019 plans have been shared by the leadership team. In fact, taking this step early can even help prepare you to provide valuable insights and feedback to your boss. What boss doesn’t like when you make their job easier?
Before even thinking about 2019, ask yourself three questions:
1. What worked?
Pull up those 2018 goals and objectives that you worked so hard on last year and identify areas of success. What objectives were achieved? How did those successfully align with annual goals? Where did the team surpass goals or expectations for the year?
Celebrate these areas – with your boss and your team. Take the time to congratulate and recognize everyone that made them possible. It not only feels good and makes your team look good – but also motivates everyone to continue to put their best effort forward for continued success.
Once you’ve celebrated, think about what’s next. Does this goal need to be expanded on? Can we up the ante or stretch ourselves into a new area that would benefit the company in a greater or different way? Or, if the goal was a large stretch or completely new initiative, does the company need to take the next year to reinforce what was established?
2. What Didn't?
Of course, it would be great if all 2018 goals and objectives were met – but often that’s simply not reality. Or even it was (congratulations, you!), there are many lessons learned along the way.
Pull your team together and brainstorm areas for improvement. What roadblocks were hit throughout the year? How were they handled and how they can be learned from for next year? Keeping this brainstorm open and welcoming allows lessons to be shared across all levels of your team and you might find an answer where you least expect it.
Take these lessons learned forward in building 2019 goals. Should an initiative be taken in a new direction? Should something be tried again but with a new tactic? Or did we learn this area is just not right for the business or a particular audience?
3. What's Next?
It might be too early to know the company’s specific business goals for 2019, but I bet you have caught wind of the upcoming new initiatives or focus areas. It’s never too early to start thinking about these areas, especially when it comes to taking feedback and lessons learned from the team into consideration. Knowing what you know about what worked and didn’t work last year – and why – what strategies would you recommend?
Considering these questions early in the 2019 planning process will ensure you have the right tools at your disposal to set goals and S.M.A.R.T. (Simple, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Timely) objectives for 2019 once the time comes. You might even have the opportunity to shape some of them.
As you plan for the year ahead, it’s never too early to give Largemouth a call. Whether you’re interested in improving your social media game, growing your executive’s visibility or launching a new product or service with a bang – we can help set objectives to reach your goals and put a plan to place to ensure they are successful.