5 Things To Do When You’re Not Hitting Your Goals

Your goals are set, but for some reason, you aren’t quite hitting them.

Don’t panic!

It’s common to set goals for your nonprofit or association marketing and end up not reaching them. Most likely, you’re missing the mark somewhere, and it’s important to learn where so you adjust and hit them.

Goals are Too Big

It’s extremely easy to get excited with your ideas and run away with huge, unattainable goals. I mean, who hasn’t done that? Or maybe someone else has set your goals too high and even going in, you are skeptical.

When establishing your non-profit or association goals, ensure they are realistic. Use SMART. How? After you’ve outlined a goal, answer the following questions honestly:

  • Is this goal specific? Make each goal clear and detailed.
  • Is it measurable? State the specific units of measurement you’ll use, for example the number of donors acquired or the number of people registered.
  • Is your goal achievable? Consider the time and resources required to reach each goal so you can set reasonable expectations.
  • Is your goal relevant to your nonprofit or association? Organizations perform best when everyone is working towards the same goals. All goals should align with your broader business goals.
  • Is your goal timely? For each goal, define its timeframe even if its annual.

Competing Goals

It would be extremely hard to develop a successful fundraising campaign that maximizes performance for increasing one-time donations AND increasing reoccurring donations. make sure that your goals don’t compete with each other.

Strategy is Off

Sometimes the initial strategy set to hit your goal needs to be reworked.

For example, let’s say your goal is to increase major gift income by 25% this year. Your strategy is to renew 4 major donors at the same level as last year and work to upgrade 2 to make a bigger gift. Then ask 10 people who have not made major gifts but have expressed interest to give a gift of at least $500. Then, ask everyone who gave $250 or more last year to increase their gift to $1,000.

But as you get closer to your end date, you are far off.

This doesn’t mean you have to give up the goal. Simply rethink the strategy.

Re-tool your personalized outreach campaign that clearly presents how donors can directly support your cause and where their dollars are going in your organization.

Tactics Need to be Adjusted

Next, take a look at the alignment between your tactics and overall goal. Let’s say your goal is to increase brand awareness on social media. Your tactics to support that goal are to post daily updates. That sounds like it could be a sound strategy. But is your audience active and responding? What value do those your posts provide to your audience?

Reevaluate. There’s no one-size-fits-all. Take a second look at your content. How can you make the language more emotional and actionable?

Doing it All Alone

Although you know your cause and mission better than anyone, calling in an expert to help with goal-setting can be helpful.  It can be reaffirming, or infuse you and your team with new ideas or angles to consider. If you can’t afford it, ask a board member or a colleague to fill that role.

It’s common for nonprofits and associations to work with outside consultants to develop customized strategies, campaign-specific goals, and insightful reporting. External experts can help you avoid common mistakes and create stronger goals that encourage better campaign performance.

And there it is, The Five reasons why you aren’t hitting your goals and how to solve them. Tell me, which one of these tips surprised you the most? What one(s) will you take advantage of?