Business Plan – Essential Elements-1

Essential Elements of an Affiliate
Marketing Business Plan – 1

There are four essential elements for an Affiliate Marketing Business Plan. They are:

  1. Goals & Objectives
  2. Market Research & Analysis
  3. Financial
  4. Promotion & Marketing

This post will deal with item number one; Goals & Objectives.


4CF goal setting method described by Dr Edwin Locke and Dr Gary Latham as part of their work on goal setting theory

Time Bound



You want to be as specific as possible in your goal(s). Get into the details of what your goal can do for your company and ask of yourself the following points:

  1. What: What do I want to accomplish?
  2. Why: Specific reasons for accomplishing the goal
  3. Who: Who is involved
  4. Where: Identify a location
  5. Which: Identify requirements and constraints


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The second term underscores the requirement for specific benchmarks for tracking advancements towards the goal. Without a way to gauge whether or not a goal is being accomplished, it becomes very difficult, if not impossible, to know if a team is making progress towards a successful conclusion.

Progress tracking will help a team stay on track, reach its target dates, and feel the sense of accomplishment that encourages it to keep going and reach the goal. A measurable goal will usually answer questions such as:

  • How Many?
  • How Much?
  • How will I know it’s accomplished?


Setting a goal that is either too difficult to achieve or beyond your capabilities will only serve to discourage you and shatter your self-confidence. Achievement of a goal is just as vital when you are setting goals for others as it is when you are aiming to attain one for yourself.

When setting a goal, you should use your skills and knowledge as a benchmark to ensure that the goal is realistic and achievable.

Setting yourself a goal that is too easily attained will leave you feeling cheated once it is attained. This is because you didn’t feel sufficient, if any, ‘challenge’ was present in the process of accomplishing it. The more experience you have in setting your own goals, the more skillful you will become at striking the necessary balance between your goal being challenging and it being attainable.


Goals that matter to you and business will get the support you need.

Is It Worth the Cost & Resources Required?
Is This the Right Time to be Doing It?
Does It Fit in With Our Overall Strategy?

Relevant goals push the team, department, and organization forward. A goal that coincides with or supports other goals would be considered a relevant goal.


Every goal needs a target date, so that you have a deadline to focus on and something to work toward. This part of the SMART goal criteria helps to prevent everyday tasks from taking priority over your longer-term goals.

A time-bound goal will usually answer these questions:

What can I do six months from now?
What can I do six weeks from now?
What can I do today?

To recap the SMART Goal setting theory:

Time Bound


To find FREE templets and examples of Business Plans for small business and entrepreneurs try the links below:

SBAHubSpot.comLive PlanGrow Think
Business Name CheckForming LLC

Please leave your comments or questions in the box below

6 thoughts on “Business Plan – Essential Elements-1”

  1. To achieve anything we want in life, we first need to plan it out.

    The end is the objective and it’s not going to happen all by itself. And that’s where the SMART goal setting theory comes into play.
    The SMART system is one I’ve come across before but must confess I have not held myself accountable to it. Maybe this is the time for me to revisit the ‘Measurable’ and ‘Time Bound’ components of my goals.

    many thanks for the reminder

  2. If you ever want to achieve anything in life, you need to have a goal to strive for. Something that you can have up on the wall and remind you on why you are doing this task. But it’s so true that putting the SMART theory against them, will help you see if they are realistic goals to strive for.

    I personally find that planning is just as important as setting out goals to strive for. Hence why timely is one of the metrics. Good reminder post!

  3. Thank you for highlighting how SMART goal setting helps with Affiliate Marketing.

    By setting specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-bound goals, affiliates can increase their chances of success by focusing on the most important tasks and measuring their progress along the way.
    You don’t want to do everything and nothing. That would just be a waste of time and resources.

    Keep up the great work!


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