Targets are numerical values which you have predetermined as an indicator of the success or failure of your marketing campaigns.
For example, “our aim is to increase the traffic through non-branded keywords by 30% in the next 6 months”. Here the target is 30%. If you just say “our aim is to increase the traffic through non-branded keywords” then you are talking about a marketing goal and not a target.
In other words, a target is a marketing goal which has been quantified. What you can’t measure, you can’t manage. It is as simple as that. It is critical that you quantify your marketing goals in order to determine whether things are going good or badly and whether you are close to achieving success or failure.
The following factors can be used to identify targets:
1. Historical Data – Historical performance is a great way to identify targets. Figuring out what went right with a past campaign can help in identifying what has started going wrong with the current campaign. If you compare past performance data with the present you will find the problems you need to focus on. Once you have identified these problems, you can set marketing goals and quantify them.
For example, let us suppose you are managing a SEO campaign and you now need to set targets for it. The first thing that you would determine is what is going wrong with your SEO campaign at the moment.
One way of doing this is to compare the past performance of the organic keywords with the present day performance and identify under-performing keywords. Determine how these under-performing keywords used to behave and what kind of traffic, revenue and conversions they generated on your website.
Your first aim should be to revert back to the previous healthy state. So if you used to get say 50k visits/month through organic keywords and now you get only 35k visits then your target could be to generate an additional monthly visit of 15k (50k-35k) through organic keywords. Once you have achieved this target you can aim for more.
2. Determine Missed Opportunities – This is another good way to set targets. You can determine missed opportunities through competitive analysis. For example, through competitive back link analysis you can identify linking partners which you never thought of targeting before, get new content ideas and identify new keywords for your SEO and PPC campaigns. Once you have determined missed opportunities you can set new marketing goals and quantify them.
3. Gap Analysis – Determine what the business is trying to prioritize and what is being prioritized on the website and through various marketing campaigns. For example, the business wants to generate more sales by selling tickets of its events but its website is promoting general information about the events. Once you have identified such gaps, you can uncover hidden problems, create new marketing goals to solve those problems and quantify them to set new targets.
4. Predictive Analytics – This consists of a variety of statistical techniques which are used to analyze current and historical data to make predictions about future risks, trends, consumer behavior and opportunities. You can use predictive analytics techniques to set realistic targets for your marketing campaigns.
Now it is your turn. How do you set targets for your marketing campaigns? Please share your views and insights.