How to Set Realistic Social Media Goals

When it is obvious that the goals cannot be reached, don’t adjust the goals, adjust the action steps. ~Confucius
social media marketing goals
While social media marketing presents businesses with an avenue to create deeper and long lasting relationships with prospects and customers, it can also be one of the most elusive forms of marketing when it comes to setting and measuring goals. The key to succeeding with your social media marketing is to set actionable, quantifiable goals that are attainable.

Starting With The Big Business Picture

We often jump into social media goal setting by looking at the specific social media metrics such as, followers, without first looking at the big picture. In order to fully keep your eyes on the price, it’s important to answer questions about why your organization needs to be in the social media space. What are you trying to achieve by using social media? Examples of big picture goals include:

  • Generating More Revenue (for profit)
  • Raising Funds (non-profit)
  • Increase Brand Awareness

Starting with the big picture view helps you answer the question of why you are using social media.

Related: 7 Signs That Your Social Media Guru Isn’t Really an Expert

Differentiating Between Long and Short Term Social Media Goals

Your long-term social media goals should be linked to your big picture goals. What do you need from social media to generate more revenue? The answer to this question could be increase traffic to your website to generate more leads. Your social media marketing plan, should include a way that new leads will be converted. Will someone reach out directly to them? Are you planning on adding the leads to an email marketing nurture campaign? It’s important to map out all the steps involved in getting you to the end of revenue generating funnel.

social media goals

Choosing Your Target Audience

One of the main reasons why some social media marketers fail to see a return on their investment has to do with their chosen avenues. Don’t just go on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn just because you know they are the major social media outlets out there. Choose Facebook or Twitter because you are convinced it has your target Audience.

Read: How To Social Media Piggy Ride: Leverage Existing Social Media Conversations

Learn from the best in Your Industry

Choose about 5 companies in your industry that are doing well with social media, examine their strategies, campaigns with the goal on unearthing why they are doing so well. This exercise will get your creative juices flowing with new ideas for your own social media websites. Another crucial element of the competitor research is to find out goals that are attainable. If you find that most of your competitors have over 2000 users then it’s save to say that you can aim for having about half or one-third of that to start.

Setting Attainable Goals

When you have your social media strategy, long and short-term goals in place it’s now time to set your goals. The key to setting attainable realistic social media goals is to always have a timeline.

Examples of Realistic and Easily Attainable Social Media Goals With Timelines:

Main Goal

I want to use social media to increase sales by 10% by the end of the year


  • Post regularly on social media weekly and engage with fans
  • Always link posts to landing pages with call-to-actions for conversion
  • Find key social media brand ambassadors to help you increase your reach

Sub Goals (Things to aim for that will make the main goal a reality)

  • I want to have a 10% social media follower or engagement growth month over month


  • Monitor last month follower growth over this month’s

Read Also: Facebook Goes Head to Head With LinkedIn by Delivering Direct News Content

Successfully setting and meeting social media goals comes with understanding the full picture, and constantly analyzing and improving results.

Written by Hellen Oti

Founder of MarketingWorld, Digital Marketing and Web Analytics Manager at CompuData and passionate Integrated Marketing Optimization (IMO) evangelist.

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