Elements Of A Marketing Strategy: KPIs

As marketers, SME owners or brand managers we do a lot. And most of what we do is for our customer. We want to share our brand message with them, educate them on our products and services and add value to their lives through creating an authentic connection with them. Of course we all have creative ideas on how to achieve this, but how do we know if those ideas are working? We implement Key Performance Indicators.

It can be easy to confuse key performance indicators, or KPIs, with business metrics. A KPI has a specified deadline and tracks specific targets or objectives. A Metric monitors ongoing business performance. So, we can look at a KPI as a type of metric, a measurable and quantifiable metric that helps us make data-driven decisions when forming our strategies, identifying areas of improvement and knowing which of our methods are working the way we want them to work.

When we are passionate about what we do it’s easy to shoot for the moon, rushing into projects without the proper planning. That’s why the SMART acronym is so important to keep in mind every step of the way. A good KPI is SMART:

Specific – We want to put real numbers in to our KPIs. Increase by 5%, improve by 10 points, reduce by 8 hours. It’s not a KPI if it doesn’t have a number, make sure to remove all ambiguities surrounding our goals.

Measurable – We want to monitor our efforts and use specific tools and sometimes software programs to do so. There are multiple apps for measuring performance, but sometimes it’s as simple as taking the time, energy and focus to gather all the information into a spreadsheet.

Actionable  – We want our KPIs to have procedures that we can follow and specific steps we can take to put our ideas into action. Set out a to-do list and check off each step along the way.

Realistic – We want them to be informed by the overall business strategy and outcomes so what we want to do does not fall outside of the scope of what we can do.

Time-sensitive – We want to be able to give deadlines, so that the work we do has a definite starting and ending point. We want to manage our time and hold each other accountable for specific tasks and elements that need to get done.

KPIs tell us how successful our brand is at doing what we set out to do for and with our audience, but they can also impact our internal teams. Having a common goal to work towards can inspire employees to band together in more meaningful ways. So, when you’ve defined your KPIs make sure to share them so the whole company can be united. Setting up milestones and sharing that progress along the way so that teams know when to go full speed if we happen to be falling behind on our goals.

The best way to work is always from the inside out. If internal teams are organised and communicating this leads to them doing good work for external audiences which ultimately leads to more brand success. To accomplish this KPIs also need to be connected to your brand purpose and culture. Your team works at the company for a reason. They saw something in the brand mission that they connected with, and if the KPIs align with achieving this mission then all work done internally will be done more meaningfully and with greater purpose. When we all understand what we are working towards and why it becomes easier and more fulfilling to implement the “how” we are working and hold everyone accountable for the individual contribution to the overall goals.  We can measure the impact of tasks and performance and how completing our daily checklist on small scale really adds value to the overall mission on a larger scale.

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