Do you often set goals that are too difficult to achieve?
Running digital marketing for your small business requires an insane amount of knowledge and variety of skills to do well.
Wait a minute, you may say: What about creating a simple funnel, sending traffic to it, and becoming rich like Russel Brunson, the owner of click-funnels?
Whenever I hear people talk about how easy their method of marketing is, I am reminded of a scene in one of my favorite movies, The Princess Bride.
Princess Buttercup has been captured by her one true love, who she thinks is the Dread Pirate Roberts. During the course of their conversation, she says:
“You mock my pain.”
He returns with a quote you always need to keep in mind when reading about the next great thing in marketing:
“Life is pain, highness. And, anyone who tells you differently is selling something.”
Yes. Marketing is difficult and requires diverse skills.
No, there is no easy, foolproof way to find leads, convert leads into customers, and wow customers. It takes hard work, adaptability, and quick adjustments to your current systems in order to succeed.
Why do I say all this as an introduction to a post about micro-goals?
I use micro-goals as a way to develop the habit of hard work, adaptability, and joy skills in my work and daily life. Smart marketers can use similar systems to break down their work and life into manageable bites.
Understanding Your Template
A micro-goal is setting a goal to do a certain level of activity in a day, and then using experience and larger goals to track these small activities throughout the day. Let’s say you want to do 52 guest posts in the next year with links back to your website. You can set a goal to do 1 guest post a week, but there are many smaller steps you need to take to achieve that goal. So, you break down the weekly goal of 1 guest post into emailing pitches to 12 websites, 2-3 follow-up emails to interested website owner, outlining the post, writing blocks of words in 100 word increments, editing your post, emailing the final post to the site owner, and following up to make certain the post was published.
So, one goal for the week requires between 25 and 35 activities over multiple days in order to achieve that one goal.
The micro goals approach looks at what it takes to get that done and works each day of the week to clear a certain number of the smaller goals off your plate. Maybe you do 12 emails one day, communicate the next, write the third, and then edit and send on the fourth day.
I have used multiple different systems for tracking micro goals depending on different jobs. One of my first micro-goal systems was when I was working as a janitor for a missions organization. With their small budget, I was the sole cleaner responsible for two office buildings, a hangar, a shop, and a daycare center. I had to break down and track my work in each building every day to ensure that I kept ahead of the ever-present mess generated in that large a footprint. So, I wrote in a little 3 by 1.5-inch spiral bound notebook an abbreviation for every action I did in each building. Something like VMS VCM FH for Vernacular Media Services, Vacuum front hall.
As I have been growing this business, the sheer amount of work we do makes most larger systems impractical for daily work. We enjoy and use Trello for agile projects and Airtable and Excel to manage additional goals, but I track my own daily activities and micro goals using a dated outline in Word.
It is the simplest solution and gives me great flexibility in planning my day, managing a very busy family, managing my employees, and dealing with customers’ schedules.
Because I never want to be a stranger to my own family, I include family-related micro-goals in my daily activity list. I want to spend quality time with my children and my wife. When I do, that gets written down so that I am writing and acknowledging that wrestling with my children actually moves me closer to my goals for the day.
Both my wife and I are members of the workforce and full-time at home parents. How does this work?
Through micro-goals (she doesn’t like writing them down as much, but she tracks them all the same) we both are able to plan each day as it comes and make certain we are achieving what we need to do each day.
I regularly write down the classes that I teach my kids as part of my daily goals. I also write down the meals I make and the chores I do.
Some people call this work-life balance. I call it the bear necessities of life.
Manage Your Marketing with Micro-Goals
So, to plan your marketing, you need to understand the steps you have to take to be successful at your marketing.
This can be tricky to do, but it usually takes practice and listening to what your customers and leads are telling you about your marketing system. And, if you don’t hear from them, that is a big statement as well.
If you want to plan out the baby steps you will need to do in order to effectively market your business through setting micro goals, we should talk.