Leadership & Strategy | January 2, 2017

How To Set Marketing Goals for 2017
2017 goals, SMART marketing

The marketing goals you set now will be the 2017 road map for your business. Are you wondering exactly how to set marketing goals? The process isn’t rocket science, but you need to set marketing goals that are realistic and, most important, that align with your business goals. In other words, what do you hope to achieve for your business via marketing and exactly how will you measure the results? Fortunately, tools such as Google Analytics, Clicky, HubSpot Analytics, and Kissmetrics can help you measure the metrics you need in order to set realistic, attainable goals.

Ask yourself these nine questions when you’re wondering how to set marketing goals:

1. How Much Revenue Will You Need to Generate from Your Inbound Marketing Efforts?

Look at last year’s total sales revenue. Multiply that number by the percentage of growth that your CEO/board members desire. Now, how much revenue do you already have for 2016? Add that to how much you expect to earn before year’s end. Compare. These simple calculations will help you come up with the revenue gap.

2. How Many Sales Will You Need to Attain Revenue Goals?

Now, divide the revenue gap by the amount of your average sale to find out how many new customers are necessary to meet 2017’s target revenue.

3. What Is Your Closing Rate and How Many Opportunities Do You REALLY Need?

Not every opportunity to reach potential clients translates into a sale. What is your average closing rate percentage? Divide the number of sales leads by the number of closed sales. This percentage of closed sales will help give you the amount of opportunities you’ll really need to generate the specific quantity of opportunities necessary.

4. How Many Sales Qualified Leads (SQLs) Will You Need? 

The number of SQLs you need depends on the number of employees on your sales team. For example, if you have two salespeople, then you won’t need as many SQLs as you would if you had ten. Unfortunately, SQLs generate qualified leads only about 5 to 15% of the time, though every business is different.

5. How Many Marketing Qualified Leads (MQLs) Will You Need?

If you don’t have many members on the sales team, you’ll need more MQLs than SQLs. Look at past data to find the average percentage of MQLs that led to a conversion.

6. How Many Leads Will You Need?

You’ve figured out your revenue goal and the number of new customers needed. Now, look at your lead-generation program, which shows the percentage of how many past leads have converted into sales. According to American.Express.com, then “you can start to develop a precise target number of leads you need to generate.”

7. How Much Traffic Do You Need?

Look at the number of visitors you receive each month, then estimate your traffic leads conversion percentage.

8. How Can I Implement Other Key Business Goals?

While you’re looking at the metrics to measure success of marketing goals, don’t overlook general business goals. Think about your mission statement and how it could help you specify other key business goals for which your company needs to collect data.

9. Should You Set Quarterly Benchmarks?

You need to determine if your goals are being reached as the year progresses. Reflecting on quarterly figures can also help you redefine and adjust the year’s goals if needed.

Now that you know how to set marketing goals, remember that they form that indispensable road map to help your business get to where it wants to be in 2017. Prioritize goals and remember that it’s ok if you need to adjust current goals.

Set SMART Goals

Need a little help setting your goals? Download our FREE goal-setting template.