“You don’t manage time – you invest time. You don’t want to just set goals – you want to achieve goals.”
– Zig Ziglar, motivational author of See You at The Top

cup of coffee sitting on a napkin printed with "a goal without a plan is just a wish"As we start the new year, many of us draft new goals – both professionally and personally. Productivity experts often recommend that goals should include five important elements: they should be Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-bound. Here’s how we’re apply those elements to our business goals in 2018.

  • Being specific helps us narrow our focus – from “being better marketers” to “creating relevant, timely, creative solutions for our clients’ daily challenges.”
  • Making the goals achievable takes us from “being the go-to vendor for the credit union industry” to “building awareness, product-specific, and client follow-up campaigns.”
  • Setting measurable targets refines our plan from “growing our business” to “serving 2 new clients and introducing 2 new services to current clients per quarter.”

This way, we can assess how we’re doing after each new initiative. By continuing to refine our process, we can turn our goals into promises — to ourselves and to our clients.

Here’s a sample of items on our to-do list for the year:

  1. Create and post 36 new prod
    uct-specific marketing envelope templates, so our clients can customize their own envelope supplies online
  2. Create and post 36 matching letterhead and drive-up envelope templates, so our clients can customize a simple supplies-based campaign online
  3. Add “best of” new designs to our Gallery monthly, to help clients gain inspiration from their colleagues
  4. Add 2-3 options per quarter to our DesignOnline series of auto loan, credit card, deposit, eServices, holiday, home loan and general loan templates – to offer an ever-expanding collection of credit union-specific marketing campaigns
  5. Build 3 how-to screencast videos to make our user-friendly DesignOnline tech tool more accessible
  6. Feature our user-friendly DesignOnline tech tools in 2-part direct mail and email campaigns to build awareness
  7. Create and promote a case-study for our online inventory management system to build awareness with multi-branch institutions
  8. Provide relevant, timely, informative content daily to help our clients and their members achieve their own goals
  9. Stay “one step ahead” by developing 30-day, 3-month, and 6-month targeted messaging
  10. Review business, financial, marketing, productivity and design industry content weekly to understand issues that affect our clients
  11. Re-prioritize these goals after each initiative to learn from our efforts and adjust our strategies
  12. In every single communication, ask “how can we make this more effective?” or “how else can we help?” or “what’s next?”

At the heart of all these goals is improving our service to credit unions. We will be checking in with clients periodically throughout the year to ensure that our upgrades are actually helping to make your marketing job easier.

What’s on your to-do list this year? We are eager to help you wherever we can to turn all of your goals into promises.