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Agencja reklamowa - strony www, aplikacje, video, kampanie 360

How to define goals and plan effective communication

Reading time: 5 min

How to define goals and plan effective communication? Determining the right goal of marketing communication is often quite a challenge. On the surface it seems simple. As the primer says, the goal must be “SMART”: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Timely. Easy? Well, it seems simple, but is it really?

The main problem I have noticed, working with both clients and members of my teams for years, is not the lack of knowledge of the SMART principle or creativity, but problems with the definition of what a GOAL itself is and how to understand it. As a result, I have often encountered situations in which when planning activities, goals and tools get mixed up, making it difficult to plan effective and coherent communication.

For example, when asked what our goal is, the answers were as follows:

“Our goal is to send mailings to 2,000 people”, “the goal is to build a website”, etc.

This is of course a mistake. The answers mentioned mentioned tools that someone would like to use, not a goal that they want to achieve. Why? People often have trouble properly defining the essence of a goal.

Jak określić cele i zaplanować efektywną komunikację

How to define goals and plan effective communication? Understand the essence of goal definition

Proper understanding of the definition of a goal and defining it precisely is crucial, because it should determine what tools and actions we choose to achieve it, and not the other way around.

So what’s the easiest way to understand the essence of a goal? The best way to answer the question is where we want to be after taking certain actions. What are our aspirations, reasons, motivations or needs that we want to meet. Figuratively speaking, we need to indicate on the map the point we want to reach and then determine the route – how to get there, i.e. the actions and tools that will allow us to achieve this goal.

Depending on the type of goal (operational, tactical or strategic), as well as the situation of the company or product on the market, the needs may be very different, including:

  • Increase in sales, revenue or market share
  • Increasing or building brand awareness and its image
  • Building a community around the brand
  • Education about products or related topics
  • Increasing the number of leads or returning customers
  • e.t.c.

Only when we define a specific goal can we start working further, i.e. selecting appropriate activities and tools. Of course, to select them effectively, apart from the goal itself, you also need to take into account the target group, the market in which we operate, the current situation of the brand, its image, etc. Nevertheless, defining the goal is always the starting point.

How to define goals and plan effective communication

From general to specific, i.e. the funnel method

The selection of appropriate activities and tools should look like a funnel – from general to specific. I think that here again we can refer to the gradation of goals and graphically present it as follows:

  • Strategic goal – defining what we want to achieve globally and in what period, e.g. reducing the costs of reaching customers.
  • Tactical goal – defining the scope of activities that will make the goal possible to achieve, e.g. loyalty and increasing the number of regular/returning customers (reaching a customer we already “have” will always be cheaper than looking for a new one).
  • Operational goals – identifying specific tools and activities that need to be performed to increase the number of loyal and returning customers. Depending on the target group, the situation and brand image and the specificity of the market in which we operate, they may be very different even with the same strategic and tactical goals, e.g.
    • Building an engaged community on social media
    • Organization of events, conferences, meetings, etc.
    • Hosting podcasts, webinars and other online events
    • Building a database by sending a newsletter containing interesting information about new products, promotions, etc.
    • Creation of a content portal on product-related topics
    • Loyalty programs
    • Promotions for regular customers

Don’t start at the end

As I mentioned at the beginning, many people, due to misunderstanding of the essence of the goal and what planning activities should look like, unfortunately start everything from scratch.

“Let’s make a website because everyone has one”, “Let’s make an event because it will be cool” or “Let’s make a mobile application because I have a cool idea”.

A tool is defined, and then we figure out what this tool should contain and what we want to achieve with it. It is therefore not surprising that most of these activities are ineffective and the ideas, in retrospect, are considered unsuccessful.

It’s hard to hit in the dark, which is why it is so important to select marketing tools and activities based on methodically planned goals and needs to be met, and not to create art for art’s sake.

Agencja reklamowa - strony www, aplikacje, video, kampanie 360