Do you have moments of doubt about your blogging? Do you wonder where it’s all going? Is it bringing you customers? Setting business blogging goals can keep you focused and motivated and help you plan for success.
When I sat down to write this podcast I wasn’t sure if you’d enjoy it. Do you need another person telling you about goal setting?
I’ve had the concept of goal setting drummed into me by lecturers, mentors, bloggers and marketers ever since I started my business.
“Have goals or you won’t succeed” they’d tell me. “If you set goals you’ll achieve them”, “If you don’t have goals you won’t’ know when you are successful.”
All of these things are true, in part but it’s not as simple as they made it sound.
It’s only in the last year I’ve started to nail goal setting and objectives but I wasn’t unsuccessful without decent goals. I managed to run my business quite comfortably with airy fairy or unobtainable goals.
So what’s the difference? Why am I now telling you why it’s a good idea?
Listen below to find out how I’m setting business blogging goals
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Why set business blogging goals?
Sometimes being a business owner is like being on a rollercoaster. There are times when everything seems to be going just fine and others when you feel like you are wasting your time.
Goals help you get through the tough times and make the good times even better.
Del Boy Trotter in British sitcom ‘Only Fools And Horses’ was famous for his catchphrase
“This time next year we’ll be millionaires.”
Although it briefly came true it wasn’t by design. It was pure luck.
Del’s goal isn’t an unusual one for small business owners. I personally have never aspired to being a millionaire but I have had some pretty badly thought out aspirations in the past.
Del Boy was a wheeler-dealer, he didn’t have a plan, he had a dream. It’s a good starting point but it’s not going to happen without a decent plan.
I’ve always been good at aspirations. “I want to sell this many *whatever I’m selling today*'” Someone told me if I said it out loud it would happen… but it didn’t always.
But that doesn’t make aspirations a bad thing.
What are your aspirations
Take a moment, sit back and think about what you really want from your business? Why did you start it? What were your aspirations?
I started my own business because:
1. I didn’t enjoy working for other people
2. I wanted more time off
3. I wanted to be challenged
So my aspiration was to generate enough income to satisfy my basic needs plus have some left over for holidays all whilst keeping my wandering mind happy.
What’s important to you? How do you define the success or otherwise of your business? Where do you want to be in five years? What do you see yourself doing?
Another mistake we often make with our goal setting is to think primarily about money. Of course money is important, we need to make money in order to succeed but a better goal is thinking about what that money would mean to you? What would your life look like as a result of having that cash? Would it put you out of debt and give you freedom? Would it buy you that dream holiday? Will it let you go for a meal out or a night on the town?
Now you know your overall business objective it’s time to look at how you can apply that to your blog. How can your blog help you achieve that goal?
The objective of my blog is for it to establish me as a digital marketing professional. I want people to hire me because I have an entertaining, knowledgeable and creative personality which will motivate small businesses to learn and implement content marketing strategies. I want people to hire me so I can keep my business going.
That’s pretty aspirational I need to break it down into smaller goals and then measure my success along the way.
Those smaller goals need to be SMART. I’m sure you’ve heard about SMART goals before.
SMART is an acronym
Let’s look at one of my more specific goals, apply the SMART principle to it and then break it down into a plan.
One of my goals is to get more speaking engagements.
The SMART version of that goal is:
My goal is to get 12 paid speaking gigs one of which should be outside Ireland in the 12 months of 2017.
Now I have a SMART goal I need to create a plan that will help me achieve it.
- I need to define the audiences that will learn from me. Which events should I be speaking at?
- I need to re-design my website to include information about hiring me to speak
- I need to create a ‘book me to speak’ page on my site that is optimised well for search engine results
- I need to rewrite my LinkedIn profile with a focus on speaking
- I need to get testimonials from people who have hired me to speak in the past
- I need to connect with conference and event organisers in Ireland and around the world and build relationships with them
- I need to create content that will appeal to this new audience and reassure them I am the right choice for their conference or event
Now I know what I need to do I need to put a timescale on those tasks and look at the types of content I need to create in order to achieve those goals.
Creating blog content to achieve goals
For example, at the moment I don’t use LinkedIn as a publishing tool but if I want to connect with conference and event organisers I need to use both LinkedIn and LinkedIn publishing, that’s at least 1 blog post a month (for LinkedIn) I need to write.
The topic for that LinkedIn blog post?
I need to build my brand so people know about me so what sort of content will fit that goal?
I need to build trust. What content will help me achieve that?
I need conference and event managers to know I’ll entertain their audiences. Who is their audience and what posts can I write that will appeal to them?
I need to take these content ideas and slot them into my content schedule.
It’s easy to lose sight of your objective once you start working. To make sure it’s always clear in your mind write it down and have it in a prominent place in your workspace.
Breaking it down further
But the big goal can be intimidating. You need to break it down further into weekly and daily chunks.
As you know I’m writing a book at the moment. I’d been struggling all year but I’m on track again now. The secret was breaking the mammoth task of writing 70 – 90 thousand words into chunks. It wasn’t knowing I needed to write 1000 words a day, it was adding a system to my week that allowed me to produce 6000 words and prioritising it in my schedule.
Each goal that leads to your business objective needs to be broken into chunks and scheduled, religiously into your week. Do that and you’re more likely to hit your targets.
This week’s challenge, if you are willing to accept it is to write down your business objective
Break it down into SMART goals and set a task list for each goal.
A proposition for you
Before you go I’ve a proposition for you. The one-year anniversary of Blogcentric is speeding towards us and I’d love to feature some of you. If you have made changes to your blog as a result of listening I want to hear your stories and record a short slot for the anniversary edition. So get in touch, email me firstname.lastname@example.org with your stories and we’ll set something up.
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