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How to Set SMART Goals and Why They Are Important for Your Social Media Advertising

The importance of goals — particularly when it comes to social media advertising — cannot be underestimated. Goals give us direction, they give us power, and they give us accountability. 

When it comes to Set Fire Creative and our clients, goals are the way that we are able to align our strategic visions. We focus in particular on “SMART” goals. A SMART goal is simply a framework to help teams and organizations define realistic goals. The acronym stands for: 

  • S – Specific
  • M – Measurable
  • A – Achievable (or Attainable)
  • R – Relevant
  • T – Time-bound

You can learn more about the details of setting SMART goals generally thanks to the good folks at Smartsheet here.

What we are concerned with here is the WHY. Why are smart goals so important for us as a social media advertising agency for small businesses? 

1. Small businesses have smaller budgets and every dollar counts

Every organization has budgets where every dollar counts, but it’s especially the case for small business owners that are putting up their own capital to fund their dreams. We get it. We are a small business too and we know what it means to be 100% invested in the success of your business. 

With SMART goals, your organization and the agency you work with to run social media ads are able to be in alignment. For example, when we ask clients about their goals we often get the answer, “I want more sales, conversions, leads, revenue, etc, etc.” This is a great goal! But it’s not a SMART goal. With this goal, the agency’s only mission if you will, is to get more of whatever the client wants. The problem with this is that over time a chasm of missed expectations forms between the agency and the client. The agency may be generating “more” of whatever the client identified as their goal, however, the client may have actually wanted to get a specific number that wasn’t communicated. We can use this example in another context as well. 

Say a client wants to get a cheaper cost per acquisition (CPA) or a higher return on ad spend (ROAS). Without a SMART goal, the agency will have no clear understanding of what the client actually needs or wants, and that simply “improvement” is the goal. This is the trap of low expectations. 

A SMART goal to give you agency would look something like this:

Our COGS and marketing expenses mean that we need to be generating cost per acquisition of at most $20, with the goal of getting that CPA down to $10 overall by the end of Q3 which is 5 months from now. This goal will give us modest profit margins on the initial sale, and our customers are loyal so they stick around with us a long time and have a high lifetime value.

2. Social media advertising platforms are data-driven

One of the best reasons to advertise on social media is the data and tracking abilities to prove that your money is being spent well. 

SMART goals are absolutely crucial to allow for efficient, effective utilization of advertising budgets. Without clear goals, budgets can go to waste because they aren’t focusing on the right people, or optimizing for the proper metric. With a SMART goal in mind, your digital advertising agency will be able to spend your advertising budget with optimal efficiency and get you the best return on your investment. Also, a good agency will be transparent and tell you if they think your budget can be better spent on other marketing channels/initiatives if over time it becomes clear that the SMART goals cannot be achieved with the chosen channel. 

Setting these clear, defined goals will help your organization grow in the right direction and will allow your marketers to drive that engine efficiently. 

Here at Set Fire creative, we believe that every brand has a story to tell. We help small businesses by specializing in social media advertising. By crafting stories that resonate with audiences and by utilizing SMART goals, we generate AWESOME results for our clients. Contact Set Fire Creative today for your free digital marketing consultation!