Setting Marketing Goals and Objectives

The primary aims of the organization are called its goals, and its objectives are the specific aims that managers try to accomplish to achieve organizational goals. Goals can be defined in terms of sales growth, increased profitability, and market leadership. Objectives are the activities that will accomplish the goals.

Marketing objectives at the tactical level derive logically from the previous stages of the planning process. To be effective and actionable in practice, tactical marketing objectives must be:

1. integrated with long-term corporate goals and strategy;
2. precise and quantified in terms of sales volume, sales revenue, or market share;
3. specific in terms of which products and which segments they apply to;
4. specific in terms of the time period in which they are to be achieved;
5. realistic and aggressive in terms of market trends (revealed in the situation analysis) and in relation to budgets available;
6. agreed and endorsed by the managers responsible for the programs of activity designed to achieve results;
7. measurable directly or indirectly.

If these criteria are not fully reflected, the objectives will be less than adequate for achieving the success of the business, and the marketing programs will be harder to specify and evaluate. The more thorough the previous stages of the marketing plan, the easier the task of specifying precise objectives.