Goals, Strategies, and Tactics for a Successful Inbound Marketing Campaign

Goals are not strategies and strategies are not goals.

Having coached 118 entrepreneurs over the last 18 months, I have found that there are 3 types of business owners.

  • Dreamer David
  • Goal Setting Gary
  • Analytical Andy

Click Here to Download Your 2015 Goal Setting Worksheet

Dreamer David has a business and has enjoyed moderate success but has not sat down to formulate a plan.  If you ask him what his goals are, he will tell you to have thousands of clients and make millions of dollars, yet he does not have a plan or strategy on how to achieve his dreams!

Goal Setting Gary owns a successful business and has a plan on how to get to the next step.  He is not very good at measuring or following through but he can not only see the big picture, but has a basic idea or general understanding of what the next steps are.

Analytical Andy is the business owner that is going to take over his market.  He is a number cruncher and tests everything.  Not only does he know what his goals are, but the exact metrics he will need to achieve the goals over the next 30, 60, and 90 days.

Most small business owners fall somewhere between Dreamer David and Goal Setting Gary.

During one of the first strategy sessions with a new coaching client, one of the very first questions I ask is what their goals are.

What I have found is that even though the concept of SMART goals is something most entrepreneurs are familiar with, most still struggle with creating goals for their own business.

Smart goals stand for goals that are:


This is a start but it fails to take it one step further.

For example, if I ask a client what their goal is and they tell me:

“I want to send a newsletter to my list in the next 30 days.”

By the definition of a SMART goal, it meets all of the requirements.  It is however not a goal but rather a tactic that might be part of a strategy to achieve a goal.

One easy way to see the distinction is to remember that goals cannot be assigned or delegated, but tactics can.

To summarize:

Goals: The result you want to achieve.
Strategies: The methods you will use to achieve your goals.
Tactics: The individual tasks needed to be completed to implement strategies.

In the post from yesterday we discussed setting your three big goals for your business based on revenue, leads, and prospects.

Today we are going to talk about creating strategies and tactics to achieve your goals.

To do this, download our Goal Setting Worksheet here.

List your goals in the column on the far left.

Next identify 3-7 different strategies that you could implement to achieve each of your goals.

For example, lets say you have a goal to generate 200 new prospects to your email marketing list per month.

This is your goal.  This is the result that you want to achieve.  You cannot assign this goal to anyone. You cannot tell your assistant – generate 200 new prospects to my email list per month.

There are several strategies that could help you to achieve this goal.

For example:

Setup a new lead magnet for 2015 and add it to the website.
Setup paid Facebook marketing ads to drive traffic to a landing page for the new lead magnet.
Blog 2 times per week and promote the blog posts through social media.

The three examples above are strategies.  They are still not tactics or tasks because they cannot be assigned.  They are not goals because they are not the results you want, but rather a method to achieve your goals.

After you have identified 3-7 different strategies for each of your goals the next step is to breakdown the individual tactics or tasks needed to complete the strategies.

Let’s take the strategy “Blog 2 times per week and promote blog posts through social media” as an example.

The tactics or tasks might look like this:

Plan out topics on the editorial calendar.
Check for headlines using Buzzsumo.
Write out content summaries and assign to writers.
Publish blog posts and add photos to the blog posts.
Promote blog posts on social media by pulling out 10 excerpts and scheduling one excerpt per day to post to social media accounts.

This is where it gets tricky!  You don’t want to spend months mapping out every single task for every single strategy.  At some point you need to actually take action!  Focus on mapping out the next steps for the next 30 days for each of the strategies.  One to three is sufficient.

Now the fun begins.

Using a project management system such as Asana, you can map out your goals, strategies, and tactics and then assign the tactics to your team.  Don’t forget to assign due dates for your tactics!

Finally, set a time weekly, monthly, and quarterly to review the progress of your goals and map out new or additional tactics.

The whole process as described above could take anywhere from one to four hours so don’t get discouraged if it takes a while to set-up.

The next step is to setup a system to measure the progress of your goals.  We will discuss that in our next blog post!

How to set measurable and achievable goals for your inbound marketing strategy for 2015!

Today is January 1st, 2015. Where has the time gone???

Are you ready for your best year ever? I know I am.

To get ready for the New Year and purpose to have my best year ever, here are some things I have done that I hope can be a help to you.

1. Clean off the desktop / laptop / phone etc. One of the first things I do is create a folder on my computer called 2014 Files. I then pull ALL my files from the last year into that folder.  I then create new folders for 2015 and anything that I know is relevant I pull it into the folder or as I use it I pull it into the 2015 folders. This insures a fresh clean start each year without having to delete files. I also don’t have to waste hours going through my files and deciding which one’s I should delete or keep.  Since I have Time Machine enabled on my mac if my computer ever does get too full, I can easily delete the older files as well.

2. Set Goals. I will say that I am a goal orientated person. If I don’t have a goal, I feel lost.  There are so many programs out there teaching you on the importance of setting goals and how to make sure you stay on track to achieve your goals, so I won’t go into that … today.

What I do want to discuss is the three main goals you should set for your online marketing.

The three big goals are:

  • Revenue
  • Leads
  • Prospects

…and if you wanted a fourth one, you could add “Traffic” to the list!

Goal 1: Revenue

First set a revenue goal.  Look at what your online marketing generated last year and set a goal for the next 12 months. I like to break it down into monthly because then it is easier to measure throughout the year.

For example: if last year you generated 120K of total online revenue, that works out to be about 10K per month.  Let’s say that your goal for 2015 is to double that so your first goal would look something like this:

Revenue Goal: Generate 20K of monthly revenue by the end of 2015.

Goal 2: Leads

The next step is to figure out how many qualified leads you will need to generate your revenue goal.  In our scenario if you want to generate 20K per month and your average transaction size is 2K, then you will need to generate 10 clients that will pay you an average of 2K per month.

If you know you need 10 clients, the next step is to think about your sales process.  How many people do you have to talk to to be able to acquire one client?  In other words, what is the conversion rate of your sales process.  If you have to talk to 10 qualified people to get 1 client, then you will need to talk to 100 qualified people to achieve your goal of 10 clients.

Since this would be your yearly goal, then you would take the number of 100 and divide it by 12 months.  That would put it around 8-9 sales conversations but there is another factor to consider.

Client Retention.  In order to reach our goal you need to consider the lifetime value of your clients.  How long do your clients generally stay onboard?  3 months? 6 months? 18 months?  If it is less than 12 months, you will need to acquire more than the 10 clients to meet your yearly goals.  Let’s not get bogged down in the math and just say we need about 120 qualified leads over the year to achieve your revenue goal.

Your goal might look like this:

Leads Goal: Generate 10 qualified leads per month that result in 10 sales conversations and 1 client.

Goal 3: Prospects

The next thing to consider is how many people that opt-in to your email marketing list are qualified and ready to make a purchasing decision.  If you are capturing leads from your site (like you should), how many of those prospects are qualified and convert to leads.

There are ways to improve this metric but to start, think about what your average was for the last year.  How many people opted in to your email marketing list?  How many sales conversations did you have with the prospects from your list?  How many prospects will you need to generate the 10 qualified leads?  Let’s say that only 5% of the people that opt-in to your email marketing are qualified, that would mean that you will need to generate 200 prospects per month to achieve your leads goal.

Prospects Goal: Generate 200 opt-ins to email marketing list per month.

Bonus Goal: Traffic

The next step is to consider how to reach the 200 people to opt-in to your email marketing list!  Some people think that there is paid and free traffic online.  In reality, all traffic is paid traffic.  There is a cost to anything you do online to create traffic.  Traffic can easily be purchased with ppc ads or it can be earned with an Inbound Marketing strategy.  Either way, there is a cost to implement.

Let’s say you are depending on SEO (search engine optimization), to drive traffic to your site.  If your opt-in rate is again about 5% then you will need to generate about 4000 unique visitors to your site each month.

Traffic Goal: Generate 4000 unique visitors to site per month.

There you have it!  Three Big Goals for your online marketing for 2015.

In our next blog post I will go into how to map out your different strategies on how to reach your yearly goals!