What are the goals of marketing

Define marketing goals - qualitative, quantitative, SMART

Defining marketing goals always means defining company goals, because marketing is not an end in itself. Nobody does marketing for marketing's sake. The basic goals are always: more sales, more turnover, more profit. Ideally all of it and with the highest possible profitability, i.e. a high return on investment (ROI). For every euro that is invested, one euro plus X should ultimately flow back into the company. A simple equation - but how do you get this value X to be as high as possible? For this you cannot avoid suitable marketing concepts and a good external presentation. Defining your own marketing goals will definitely help you along the way.

Relevance of Marketing Goals

Entrepreneurs often start complex and costly marketing concepts without realizing in advance what exactly the individual measures are supposed to achieve and without them fitting into their own overall strategy. So before you devote yourself to the concrete implementation of your marketing strategy, you should definitely think about your own goals. How is that important? Well, on the one hand, because otherwise you can sink a lot of money in the wrong place and, on the other hand, because otherwise it is hardly possible to measure how successful an action was afterwards. To do this, you should first go over your current company situation with a magnifying glass. What are your sales and sales figures? How high is the frequency of visitors to your website and, if your company can be found on Facebook, how many fans do you have? What is your “Unique Selling Proposition” (USP)?

If you don't know where you want to go, you shouldn't be surprised if you end up somewhere completely different - Mark Twain

After you have examined the current state of affairs, derive your general corporate strategy and goals: Suppose you run a small advertising agency, let's call it “Miller”. Your corporate strategy could be that you want to differentiate yourself from the competition through exceptional service quality. On the other hand, there are your general corporate goals, which are expressed, for example, in the plan to achieve a certain market share. A corporate strategy therefore primarily relates to your USP and your personal competitive advantage over the competition. Once you have your business strategy and overall goals in mind, you can define your marketing goals as well.

Definition of qualitative marketing goals

When you define qualitative marketing goals, economic indicators are initially left out. This means that you deal with content-related questions such as: "Do we want to strengthen the relationship with existing customers and improve our service?" Or: "How can we build a positive corporate image?" When we talk about the image of a company, we are talking about what an outsider thinks of it, what they think of your products, your service or the external image of your company. The corporate identity, on the other hand, embodies what each individual member of your company - whether managing director or working student - thinks of it. Ideally, the corporate identity - also known as “corporate identity” - corresponds to the brand image. In other words, the image that an outsider has of your company corresponds exactly to what you yourself think of your own company. This can be to your advantage when both sides have a positive image. In the worst case, both sides have a negative opinion of your company. That is why it is particularly important for small and young companies to develop a clear self-portrait right from the start. Let's take the example of the advertising agency “Müller” again. This agency should make it clear why their service is so good and how they differentiate themselves from the competition. The same applies to your own company: Put your USP in the right light - be convincing! Do not forget, however, that the development of your own “corporate identity” and subsequent image building takes time and can only be done gradually.

In general, you can define the following qualitative marketing goals, too Perceptual goals to be named:

  • Communicate / make company philosophy known to the outside world
  • Image building: using your own “corporate identity” to create credibility and trust and strengthen customer relationships
  • Communicate USP positioning:
    • cheap offer
    • best price performance ratio
    • highest quality
    • best service
    • exceptionally fast / creative / individual
  • Build brand / company image or improve it through image campaigns

With perception goals, you determine whether and how you want to convey the corporate image to outsiders. These objectives make sense - because both a higher level of awareness and a good corporate image lead to more sales and economic success. Do you remember, for example, the Opel campaign “Rethinking Your Mind”? The car manufacturer, who stumbled towards bankruptcy like a battered boxer in the ring during the financial crisis of 2008, was able to increase its profile with its campaign, improve its image fundamentally - and ultimately regain economic stability.

Definition of quantitative marketing goals

In addition to the qualitative goals, you can also define quantitative marketing goals based on economic key figures. You can fall back on the classic economic parameters such as turnover, sales and profit and then add a time horizon to the objectives. Quantitative marketing goals also relate to parameters such as the so-called “conversion rate”, a kind of “action-effect ratio”. This relationship becomes interesting if our imaginary advertising agency “Müller” also lands orders via your company website. If 20 out of 1,000 visitors contact us for sales talks, the corresponding conversion rate is 2%.

Concrete economic marketing goals with a corresponding time horizon are:

  • Sales increase of X% in the next financial year
  • Sales growth of X units in the next six months
  • Increase market share by X% in the next financial year
  • Increase the conversion rate by X% on the website within the next year

On the other hand, quantitative marketing goals are also reflected in the scope, i.e. in non-monetary values ​​such as the increase in fans on Facebook. With these Reach goals you can determine in which areas you want to address more potential customers and where you can draw attention to yourself or your product. The main thing is to increase your level of awareness in general or in a specific target group.

Concrete goals in the context of reach can therefore be:

  • Increase in fans / followers on Facebook / Twitter etc. by X in the next six months
  • X more visitors to your own website by date X
  • X mentions in relevant magazines / press releases in the next three months (define in advance which magazines are relevant for you)

The definition of quantitative marketing goals offers you the great advantage that you have measurable values ​​in front of you and can therefore easily check afterwards or during the implementation of your marketing concepts whether you have achieved or will achieve your marketing goals.

Goals have to be SMART

When defining your marketing goals, make sure that your goals are SMART. SMART? Exactly - they should be specific, measurable, accepted, realistic and timed:

Specific: Don't just beat around the bush, get to the heart of your marketing goals!

Measurable: Your marketing goals are an important tool of marketing control and must therefore be measurable. As I said, when it comes to quantitative objectives, this is quite easy because you can use key figures to quickly determine whether your measure has paid off. In the case of qualitative goals, this becomes more difficult because the company image cannot simply be translated into key figures, for example. At this point you have to design appropriate “KPIs”, ie “Key Performance Indicators”, which make an abstract element such as the image measurable. If the advertising agency “Müller” wants to be associated with an exceptionally good service, it should define KPIs in advance. A first good approach here would be a survey of existing customers who distribute points in different categories.

Accepted: In order for you to achieve your goals, everyone in your company must be convinced of them. Pull together and make sure that everyone can identify with the marketing goals!

Realistic: Align your goals with the requirements of your company and keep them within a realistic framework. Let's take another look at our advertising agency “Müller”: If this agency had recorded constant sales growth of three percent over the past few years, the goal of increasing sales by 20% next year makes no sense. Your marketing should of course bear fruit, but it won't work miracles in no time - so be realistic!

Terminated: When it comes to your quantitative goals, do not forget to specify the point in time by which you want your project to be achieved!

In addition to SMART marketing goals, the causality Your results play an important role. Causality means that a achieved marketing goal is actually the result of the associated measure. For example, a quantitative marketing goal of the advertising agency “Müller” can include an increase in profit that it wants to achieve with classic flyer advertising and new customers. An actually achieved increase in profit can of course be influenced by many other components and also be the result of a reduction in personnel. When you take a final look at your measures, make absolutely sure that your goals have actually been achieved through your marketing measures!

I think you are ready now and can define your own marketing goals, I wish you every success!

Would you like to read more on the subject? So far, the following articles have appeared in the "Small Business Marketing" series. As a supplement, I would also like to recommend our series on "Online Marketing for SMEs" to you!

  1. Small Business Marketing - An Introduction

  2. Who am I and if so, why? The basics of marketing

  3. Marketing definition

  4. Marketing mix

  5. Define marketing goals

  6. Unique selling proposition

  7. Define target group - this is how it works

  8. The storytelling method in marketing

  9. Dialog marketing for SMEs - individual and personal

  10. How do I find the right name for my company?

  11. How do I design the search for the right domain?

  12. Why a simple homepage is better than none

  13. Seven simple basics for creating your website

  14. Logo design part I - compressed marketing

  15. Logo design part II - what do I have to consider?

  16. Logo Design Part III - Ask a designer or do it yourself?

  17. Logo design part IV - what do I have to observe legally?

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