Yeah, I’m leaving it a bit late for the whole New Year Resolution thing. After all, most people give up their resolutions by now, not start them. But, as of now, I’m making a decision to focus on making SMART goals for myself and this blog. What does that mean, you ask? Well, TONS of planning, for one… and a whole lot more.
But first, let’s look at what happened and how I’m going to fix it!
What went wrong last year?
In order to really do better at the whole blogging thing, I have to start by first figuring out what didn’t quite work. It’s just like every aspect of life. Failure isn’t a bad thing, necessarily, because if you don’t fail you can’t learn from your mistakes. In other words, if I hadn’t bumbled around so much last year, I wouldn’t have this opportunity to learn and grow.
So what went wrong?
Well, I had goals, but I didn’t really have any idea how to achieve them. It’s all well and good to say I want my blog to rank on the first page of google when people search for mental illness and parenting. BUT! If I don’t have any clue how to work with SEO, I’m doomed. On top of that, I’d set a massive goal that, frankly, wasn’t really attainable for me anyway.
I started all this on a whim (albeit, one of the best whims I’ve ever had), which means I took pretty much no time planning outside of “Hey, I can write about parenting struggles with chronic mental illnesses!”. For anyone who hasn’t tried to start a business, that’s bad. The odds of building a thriving business (and/or blog) are ridiculously slim that way.
Now I’m working to fix it!
Now the good part! Time to learn from my mistakes.
I’ve done some reading now about business planning and blog planning specifically, so I finally have a place to start. I’m going to keep learning about planning, actually plan out my posts, and figure out how I can earn an income from the blog without being sales focused. I’ve been struggling with the last one because I need the blog to bring funding so I can keep doing it, but I also want it to be focused on education and support, not money-making.
I have a general idea of what I need to do now, but I have to ask: How will I know it’s working? Enter, SMART goals!
What are SMART goals, though?
For those of you who haven’t heard of SMART goals, they’re just that… smart goals. By smart, I mean intelligent goal setting. By SMART, I mean specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and timely.
Let’s break that down a little.
- Specific goals are ones that clearly state the objective. For example, popularity is all well and good, but a more specific goal would be to increase pageviews per day.
- Measurable goals are ones that can be clearly measured. The example, in this case, would be to reach a total of 20 page views per day. Popularity, though, lacks this ability to be measured. After all, who really knows what it means to be popular?
- Achievable goals are ones that are realistic in regards to where you are now. In my blog, the goal of 20 page views per day may actually be out of my reach. I’m averaging 2. Maybe a better goal would be a total of 10 page views per day.
- Relevant is just that, relevant to you and what you need/want. For me, increasing my page views is extremely relevant to my success. Without an audience, I can’t get to my larger goals at all!
- Timed means you set yourself a time goal to complete your task. So, I’d want to reach my goal of 10 page views per day by the end of June, for example.
All in all, SMART goals aren’t that tricky to set if you know what you need and where you want to go! So, what do I want to accomplish this quarter?
My SMART goals
Well, let’s start with the one I just made! I want to achieve 10 views per day by the end of June. It feels modest, maybe, but I’d rather smash my goal than try to bite off more than I can chew. My other goals are:
Create 3 new freebie worksheets by the end of May. You’ll find the first one at the end of this post!
Create a complete outline for a small paid product by the end of June. I’ll admit, that’s a bit of a stretch goal. I have a couple ideas for what I might create, but I still have to reconcile the need for funding and the desire to keep all of my resources accessible for anyone, regardless of income. So, we’ll see.
Create a schedule for all posts for the rest of the year by the end of the week. Okay, I may have cheated a little on that one. I actually already accomplished that goal! I had set it at the beginning of the month and I’ve been working CRAZY hard on it. So, yay!
Now tell me what your goals are!
It’s been shown that the best ways to accomplish your goals is to have people that support you in them. So, grab your copy of the worksheet, share your goals here, and we’ll keep each other in line, getting it done!