Every skilled marketer knows the dangers of a disorganised and misaligned digital marketing strategy. Conflicting digital marketing strategies often result in shrinking internal resources and creating confusion and frustration. More so, indecisive leaders paralyse progress, keeping online marketing campaigns from moving forward, thus, rendering all digital marketing efforts and marketing campaigns useless. This is why SMART goals are incredibly important for organisations; remarkably, every successful digital marketing strategy is made up of that.

Chances are, you may have already heard about or are familiar with SMART goals, but do you know how to implement the concept and create a powerful results-driven digital marketing strategy?

If you want to learn more about SMART goals for successful digital marketing strategies, you have come to the right place! This article will give a detailed and actionable guide on using this concept for your digital marketing campaigns.

What are SMART Goals?

Introduced by George T. Doran in his 1981 paper. S.M.A.R.T. is an acronym that stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound. For digital marketing, SMART is a framework to help marketers design their goals and business objectives.

SMART goals aim to provide a clear and structured method of defining and assessing your marketing objectives – which should be actionable, realistic, and attainable. It helps you focus your efforts, measure your progress, and ultimately drive growth for your business.

That said, all smart goals must be the following.


Define your goal in the most precise way possible. Break it down into smaller pieces, and outline exactly what you want to achieve in your digital marketing efforts.

Specify what you want to accomplish, and include why it is important. Here’s a quick example of how to be specific about your goal:

Instead of saying, “increase traffic to a business website,” be more specific by stating a target, like “increase traffic by 10% within the next 30 days, or 25% in the next six months.”


To determine your success, you should be able to track the progress of your goal. This means knowing what metrics to identify and what key performance indicators (KPIs) to measure.

If your goal is to boost traffic to your website, then you should have means to measure your progress towards that goal. Start by tracking, for example, the number of unique visitors, organic search volume, email marketing conversions, and your bounce rate. It’s also best to examine your traffic sources so you can plan your strategy accordingly.


While it’s good to aim for the stars, your goals will be more achievable if you make them realistic. Consider the situation, capabilities, and resources when setting your objectives and goals.

For example, if you have a small content team, aiming for 50 blog posts per month might be unrealistic. Instead, focus on producing three to four blog posts per week to make it more achievable.


As said earlier, marketing strategies that are misaligned from your business’s overall objectives can wreak havoc on your overall marketing efforts — especially when it comes to your company’s goals, your brand’s relationship with your target audience, and overall mission, vision, objectives, and overall marketing strategy.

To avoid this problem, make sure your goals are relevant to the overall business objectives.

If your goal is to increase conversions and sales, then you should break that down by focusing your efforts on generating leads and increasing ways to convert website visits to purchases.


Since you have identified clearly what it is that you want in your digital marketing efforts and overall business, and you already know what you need to do to be able to get what you want, then try to achieve that in a specified period of time by setting a timeframe for that goal.

Putting a deadline on your goals will help you stay focused and motivated. Say you are looking to increase your website traffic by up to 25% in the next six months, then you should take the six months deadline seriously. Create a sense of urgency to help you motivate yourself throughout the process and get excited about the progress.

How SMART Goals Ensure Successful Digital Marketing Strategies

SMART goals bring a lot to the table for digital marketing.

Provides focus and clarity

First and foremost, it helps you find focus and clarity in the things you need to do to achieve your digital marketing goals. It ensures that everyone in your team is on the same page on digital marketing efforts and understands the objectives and the things that need to be done to achieve them.

Motivation and accountability

SMART goals boost motivation and improve accountability. Since everyone knows what to do in your digital marketing plan, everyone can get involved in designing, assessing, and implementing your brand’s marketing campaigns with a sense of purpose.

Allocate time and resources

Any entrepreneur and leader understand the dangers of micromanaging. SMART goals help you distribute priorities and manage time more efficiently. When you have a deadline in place, everyone in your organisation knows what they need to maximise the time and resources.

Assess your efforts and track your progress

A digital marketing plan designed with the SMART framework allows you to evaluate the success of your online marketing campaigns. By tracking your progress, you can pinpoint the areas where you are doing good and falling behind. This way, you can make adjustments along the way and ensure your digital strategy is still intact with your primary goals.

Ensures success

There is no one-size-fits-all marketing strategy that works for every online business. An effective digital marketing plan is tailor-made to particular needs, goals, objectives, target audiences, and things they want to achieve.

And since every business and organisation is different, each one’s definition of success differs. SMART goals, however, improve your chances of getting more successful outcomes from your efforts.

How To Use Smart Goals for Your Digital Marketing Strategies

So how can you strictly implement SMART goals into your digital marketing plan?

Step 1: Identify key marketing objectives

Start by making a summary of your key marketing objectives. Whether it’s to drive more traffic, improve brand reputation and awareness, generate more leads, boost sales and revenue growth, etc. Ensure that these objectives align with the needs of your target audience, be it new customers or existing ones.

Step 2: Fine-tune your objectives to fit the SMART framework

Indeed you will have multiple marketing objectives for your business. Make sure each objective has its corresponding SMART goals, and each business meets each SMART criteria.

Here are a few examples:

  • Improve on social media paid advertising to generate 150 qualified leads each month
  • Increase website traffic by 25% in the next six months
  • Boost revenue by 10% within the next quarter

Step 3: Establish KPIs

The best way to measure your progress and ensure a successful digital marketing strategy is to establish KPIs for your SMART goals.

The KPIs are your qualified metrics that measure the efficacy of your digital marketing efforts. Some examples of KPIs include:

  • Lead generation: Numbers of leads, conversion rate, and cost per lead
  • Website traffic: Number of unique visitors, session duration, page views, bounce rate, etc.
  • Boost sales: Revenue, customer lifetime value, average order value, etc.

Step 4: Develop your digital marketing plan

Once you have your SMART goals and KPIs in place, it’s time to develop the strategies and tactics to achieve your goals. This involves identifying different channels for your marketing; finding the specific channels that suit your marketing goals; making a content and blog post plan; and/or strategically allocating the budget and resources.

Step 5: Put your digital marketing strategy in motion

Now is the time to execute your plan for your marketing campaigns. Make sure to monitor your online marketing campaigns each step of the way. Also, make sure you are in the loop about any updates and changes. Analyse the market and adjust your tactics based on your campaign’s performance relevant to your data analysis.

Step 6: Analyse and measure your performance

Ensure you keep track of the whole process and keep an eye on your progress. Assess your progress based on your smart goals. Use data analysis (analytics tools) and KPI data to assess and identify areas for improvement. Make data-driven decisions and changes.

Step 7: Review and refine your marketing campaigns

As you achieve your goals and grow your business, your marketing plan expands, and your priorities may change. As that happens, make sure you review and refine your SMART goals; ensure that they are aligned with the overall business objective and strategy and that they always address the needs and interests of your audience.

That said, be ready to change and adapt your digital marketing strategy based on new insights, changing markets, and new opportunities heading your way.

Understand your digital marketing campaign’s goals

Whether focusing on your search engine optimisation (SEO), social media marketing, pay-per-click advertising, paid search advertising, content marketing, email marketing, influencer marketing, etc., make sure you understand what you need to achieve in your marketing campaign.

Let’s say you plan to run a video marketing campaign for Valentine’s Day for a small business, say a flower shop chain in your state or city. You want to target at least 10,000 impressions from your audience. Your overarching marketing campaign includes:

Create a couple of high-quality inspiration posts per day for the 15-20 days until Valentine’s Day. Invest about $500 in promotions. Here’s how to write SMART goals for the campaign:

  • Specific: Get 10,000 impression
  • Measurable: 10,000 social media users
  • Achievable: Create and schedule two or three high-quality Valentines-related posts
  • Realistic: Spend $500 on ads and promotions
  • Time-bound: Every day for the next 20 days before Valentine’s Day

Understand your marketing audience

No one should understand your target audience better than you. This means you should know the things they like and dislike. This will help you create content that engages and resonates with them. The more engaged your target audience is, the more likely they are going to share it with the people they know, giving you more traffic and exposure.

The Bottom Line

There is no reason for a well-equipped marketing team that is made up of skilled, experienced, and well-supported members not to make a successful digital marketing strategy.

That is because SMART goals are not rocket science, but mostly common sense. This is the beauty of the framework; you keep a close grip on your marketing objectives, understand the needs and wants of your audience, and stay deeply rooted in your business objectives.