This follows on from our previous post about the background to objectives and measurement. We’ll keep it very simple for the moment, but there are two parts to the process of setting objectives in the digital space.
1. Setting business objectives
2. Setting campaign objectives
You need to consider both of these in order to have a complete picture of what you’re setting out to do.
On a general note, objectives in the digital space must be tangible, measurable and deliverable. Also, these objectives should be clearly presented in simple sentences so that everyone in the team can understand them.
1. Setting a business objective
Whether you’re running this campaign for your own business or you’re working on behalf of a client, you need to understand the top level business objectives.
These objectives are generally financial and are best based on the amount of cash you need in the bank by some specified date.
- Business objective is to generate 4K of sales for ‘Our Well Received Debut Album’ by the end of September 2012
Performing arts company example
- Business objective is to generate 11K of tickets sales for ‘Our Not-To-Be-Missed New Show’ by 23rd of October 2012
Widget manufacturer example
- Business objective is to generate 10K of sales of ‘Our Fantastically Useful Widget’ by the end of September 2012
Graphic design consultancy example
- Business objective is to generate 50K of fees by end of September 2012
You get the idea. Write the sentence down as large as possible on one page of A4 and stick it on the wall so the whole team can see it.
But, don’t miss this bit. You need to have this written down. If you’re working for a client and you haven’t been given clear information, ask them! The results of your campaign can then be measured. It will make it much easier to justify the effort you’re about to undertake on their behalf.
Importantly, these are not the Campaign Objectives. The main point to make is that the way to deliver the business objective set out above is to create a strategy that probably involves several different campaigns and each campaign will have one clear objective.
The reason for this is that your campaign is more likely to succeed if you’re only dealing with one very clear campaign objective.
Too many objectives and you’re more likely to fail.
There are several different campaigns that you may run. Some examples include;
- Promoting an ebook that you have published
- Promoting a film that you have made
- Encouraging sign ups to a mailing list
- Encouraging ‘Likes’ of a Facebook page
Each of these is best treated as a separate campaign.
2. Setting a campaign objective
There should only be one primary objective for a campaign. If it turns out that there are several objectives, then you should consider running separate campaigns.
Once again, we need a very simple sentence that everyone involved can understand and which is measurable.
The primary objective of this campaign is to get [some number of] people to [watch/download/sign up for/become aware of/buy/visit] [a video/ebook/event/concept/product/page] before [some specified date].
Ebook campaign example
- The primary objective of this campaign is to get 500 people to download an ebook before the end of September 2012.
Video campaign example
- The primary objective of this campaign is to get 1000 people to watch a video before the end of August 2012.
Event campaign example
- The primary objective of this campaign is to get 5000 people to sign up for an event before the 8th September 2012.
Note that some aspects of the campaign strategy (such as those above) will build visibility and awareness in support of the business objectives but it is also possible for some top level business objectives to be delivered directly by one campaign. The trick is to have the right mix of campaign tactics to deliver the business objectives. Lets look at the Band example from above.
- Business Objective is to generate 4K of sales for ‘Our Well Received Debut Album’ by the end of September 2012
Based on album price of 7, the Campaign Objective very simply becomes;
- Campaign Objective is to get 571 people to download ‘Our Well Received Debut Album’ by the end of September 2012.
When setting the numbers above, it is important to bear in mind the conversion rates needed to deliver the top level business objective but we will discuss this in detail in a separate post.
But, the most important thing is to keep this objective absolutely simple and get it written down. Write it down and stick it on the wall!
- Keep these objectives dead simple
- Understand the difference between business and campaign objectives
- Write them down!
We’ll talk about how to keep track of progress against these objectives on a week by week basis in another post. Why not subscribe to our RSS feed to be updated about the next posts in this series.