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How Small Businesses Can Use SMART Goals With Social Media

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January 24,2013

By Pamela Muldoon, Next Stage Media Group

Social media has so many moving parts that it is easy to allow overwhelm to set in and paralysis to take over. A great way to combat these emotions is to break down the big picture and create goals that provide a reason for your daily activity and will result in a solid endgame with what you are attempting to accomplish.

For some of you the concept of SMART goal setting may not be new and this will be a nice refresher. If you are not familiar with this practice of goal setting, then you are in for a treat. Setting SMART goals is a great formula for all areas of your life, personal and professional. Let's break it down:

S = Specific: Be very specific with what it is you want to accomplish. Be clear and concise.
M = Measurable: You can only manage what you measure. If there is not a measurable element to your goal, it's not a goal.
A = Attainable: I love reaching for the stars and encourage folks to think big. But when setting goals, be realistic with your expectations. If the goal is too big or too high and you cannot achieve it, disappointment ensues and usually discourages future goal setting.
R = Relevant: Your goal must match what you want to accomplish and be timely for your business or life.
T = Time Based: For a goal to truly be a goal, it has to have a deadline. Set a specific time in which you want achieve your goal. This is the only way you can relook at what you accomplished, adjust time if needed for a future goal and provide a framework in which to work within.

So how does this work with social media? Here are some examples:

Next Stage Media Group FB Page will add 100 new fans per month (organically) in Q1 2013.
It is specific (NSMG Page adding new fans), it is measurable (100 new fans), it is attainable (with daily posting, increasing engagement & reach, 100 new fans every 30 days seems very attainable), it is relevant (adding quality fans to your business page will be important to your overall social media ROI) and it is time based (this goal is basically Jan, Feb & March of 2013).

@CM360Radio will RT 10 different posts relevant to our audience daily through December 31, 2013.

I will make 5 new professional connections in LinkedIn every week through December, 31, 2013.

You could even break this into something more specific:

I will make 5 new professional connections weekly in LinkedIn specifically in the marketing industry through January 31, 2013. Then choose another industry for Feb, another for March, etc...

Now it's your turn. What goals can you set with your social media activity? It's truly the day-in, day-out small items that bring about big results. Set your social media SMART goals and make 2013 a phenomenal year!

Pamela Muldoon is Principal of Next Stage Media Group and the Host of Content Marketing 360 Radio Show. Follow Pamela at @pamelamuldoon.

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