In your blog, discuss why and how companies use marketing objectives. In your discussion, include how to align marketing activities with the mission, objectives, and goals of the organization and the consideration of legal and ethical issues in the development of objectives.
Marketing objectives are a brand’s defined goals. Companies establish these objectives because it sets the direction of what needs to happen for a product or service to do well in the market. It also allows an organization to focus its efforts, so it is not wasting its time, energy, or financial resources. And it stimulates effort, providing a basis for motiving people to achieve them. But these objectives must be SMART (see below in bullet points) because following this criterion allows a brand to better map where it wants to land. Doing so also increases its chance of achieving the end results it desires. Also, companies use marketing objectives to achieve a variety of goals, like increasing a brand’s customer base, reaching a target market, launching a new product/service, etc. And in case there is still some confusion about SMART goals, an example of this would be: to increase the brand’s customer base by 25% by the end of the year.
- Specific: a clear description of what needs to be achieved
- Measurable: a metric with a target that indicates success
- Achievable: an attainable goal that is not impossible to achieve
- Realistic: a goal that is realistic and relevant to the brand or its product/services
- Timely: a date for when the goal needs to be achieved
To align marketing activities with the mission and goals of an organization, a marketer must first determine what they are. Learning what the objectives are may require working with different departments within a company or speaking with its executives. Its mission, however, may be available on the brand’s website. For example, Nike’s site clearly states that its mission is to bring inspiration and innovation to every athlete in the world (Nike, 2021). Once they’ve been determined, however, a marketer can then create SMART goals based on them. The next steps, of course, would be to devise key marketing strategies for reaching these objectives and track Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to understand how well these strategies are panning out (Strategy Beam, 2016).
When developing marketing objectives, there are numerous legal and ethical issues to consider. One surrounds social media in which the content being used should be authentic. However, if it is someone else’s work, their permission must be obtained first before it is used. And a marketer must first obtain the consent of the people depicted if they want to post photos of them. Otherwise, this material could be violating copyright, trademark, or intellectual property (IP) laws (Winston & Strawn LLP, 2021). Also, if email is part of an objective, an important legal issue to be mindful of is the CAN-SPAM Act. This law has many requirements, such as not using deceptive subject lines, telling recipients where you’re located, honoring opt-out requests (promptly), etc. Compliance, of course, is of the utmost importance because violating these rules is quite costly, meaning nearly a fine of $44,000 for each email violation (Federal Trade Commission, 2009). Some ethical danger zones to avoid, however, are emotional exploitation, stereotyping, market exclusion from “undesirable” audiences like plus-size individuals, and puffery. Puffery is the exaggeration of a product’s qualities. And one should steer clear of these unethical practices because they can have severe consequences for a brand, like a destroyed reputation, loss of customers, and possibly legal trouble.
Federal Trade Commission. (2009). CAN-SPAM Act: A compliance guide for businesses. https://www.ftc.gov/tips-advice/business-center/guidance/can-spam-act-compliance-guide-business
Nike. (2021). What is Nike’s mission? https://www.nike.com/help/a/nikeinc-mission
Strategy Beam. (2016, January 24). How to align your marketing strategy with your business goals. https://www.strategybeam.com/blog/how-to-align-your-marketing-strategy-with-your-business-goals/#:~:text=Start%20with%20SMART%20marketing%20objectives,conversion%20rates%2C%20and%20lead%20generation.
Winston & Strawn LLP. (2021). What is social media law? https://www.winston.com/en/legal-glossary/social-media-law.html