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SMART Goals for Digital Marketing

Written by Eleanor McGleenan

smart goals for digital marketing

It’s January, you’re sitting at your desk, you’ve been told to “come up with this year's marketing plan ”, your pen is tapping off the notepad in front of you like a metronome with ideas swirling around your head. The ideas you have are big and ballsy, but there’s an air of hesitation. “The boss” warned you at the end of last year that he didn’t see the “benefit of investing in marketing” as there wasn’t anything “measurable” to show him at the end of year meeting. So what do you do? You need to be smart about this and find a smarter way of measuring performance and staying on track. Well fortunately for you, there’s such a thing as a SMART goal which is just what the doctor ordered.

But, “what is a smart goal?”, I hear you cry? These are targets that are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Timely. They help to clearly define the objective and the path to achieving it while also giving a deadline when a new goal can be set.

In many cases when it comes to goal setting at the start of the year, people revert to “we want an increase of 25%”, everyone goes back to their desk and the goal is never mentioned again - or even worse, no goal is mentioned at all. Smart goals take away any uncertainty and give you a clear target to aim for. Even if you don’t reach it, it gives you context on how close you were and what might need to be changed to achieve your goal next time.

So rather than saying “we want 25% growth this year”, a SMART version would be:

 “Increase online sales through our website directly from Google Ads by 35% or €2500 from €7500 in 2021, by end December 2022 (by increasing budget investment and improving conversion rates) by December 25th 2022”

This goal is:


We’ve outlined what we want to increase and how we plan to achieve this.


We mentioned that we will look at Conversion rates to measure our success


We saw 20% growth this year so 35% is a good target.


More conversions will help our bottom line so this will help overall business growth


We need to achieve this by the 25th December, at which time we will establish if we missed, met or beat our goal and by how much. Albeit we should be measuring as we go and not waiting until year end.

So, when you are putting together your 2023 strategy, be sure to include SMART goals so you can easily understand how effective your efforts were.

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