Principles in Setting Goals for Marketing Programs

Principles in Setting Goals for Marketing Programs

Seven principles used by Analytics to set goals for Instagram Marketing campaigns. We take goals very seriously at Instagram. Goals are important anchors and focus points.

We take goals very seriously at Instagram. Goals are important anchors and focus points. They ensure everyone is aligned and set expectations on what a particular marketing program is trying to achieve.

As a Marketing Analytics leader, it is my responsibility to set goals for marketing programs.

However, setting a goal isn’t always easy. Time constraints, complex organizational structures, differing opinions and unclear strategies are some of the many factors that can obscure the goal setting process.

To counter-act these and limit bias, I lean on a set of principles to set goals for each marketing program.

Here are the seven principles I use to allocate goals for Instagram Marketing:

Principle 1: The goal needs to be a natural extension of the business problem, action we want the viewer to take and strategy to achieve that action.

There should be a natural thread from business problem, to action, to strategy and then to the goal. Let’s take a hypothetical example.

The business problem is this — we launched Story Stickers to increase overall content production but users are avoiding the Stickers because they think they are too hard to use.

Action — we want users to try using the stickers and lift overall content production.

Strategy — Use a tutorial based ad to show “non sticker users” an easy way to use a sticker in their Instagram story.

So we’d set our goal around lifting new content production among this selected audience of “non sticker users”.

Principle 2: Each marketing program should have two goals — one sentiment and one product.

The idea here is simple. We want a marketing program to drive both action (as measured by our product goal) and positive sentiment (as measured by our sentiment metric).

If a marketing program delivers on immediate action but not sentiment, then it is not helping us in the long term. If a marketing program lifts sentiment but not action, then it’s not helping us drive immediate business value.

A good measurement program measures many metrics. But there should only be two goals. All other metrics should form part of a learning agenda.

Principle 3: There should be a primary and secondary goal. Success is first judged against the primary goal and then the secondary.

Linked with Principle 2 — Among the two goals, there should be a primary and secondary goal.

Success should be judged against the primary goal first and whether that was achieved. If yes, we move to the second goal. The role of this primary and secondary goal hierarchy is to help prioritize the many go-to-market components.

Principle 4: Goals should be at the top-line, business impact level.

We set top-line goals. What we mean here is that, ultimately, everything we do should move the overall business forward. That might mean adding more users, increasing overall engagement or something.

We need to avoid goals that are too granular. Granular goals don’t tell us if we are moving the business forward, overall.

Returning to our Sticker example from Principle 1. We could set the goal on lifting sticker usage, but that wouldn’t tell us if we’re contributing to the overall business. That’s because the sticker product is ultimately about lifting overall content production, not just sticker usage. A lift in sticker usage may just mean our marketing is cannibalizing another part of the business and not actually raising overall content production and not helping the overall business.

So we set the goal around the overall content production increase.

marketing-analytics data-science marketing decision-science analytics data analytic

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