What’s Your Action Plan?

We may all have decided to start this Affiliate Marketing journey but, truth be told, we aren’t all at the same place. Some may be just starting out while others have quite a bit of experience. That being said, there is one big question that all of us have to ask ourselves – and be able to answer:

Do You Have An Action Plan?

You’ve heard it so many times, everybody needs a plan to achieve their goals – and that’s another thing; what’s your goal? I think if anyone had told me that it would require so much thought and decision, I wonder if I would have decided to start any of my internet businesses or this Affiliate Marketing journey.

But we are here and that decision has been taken. So right now, we need to make sure we have an action plan – that can work – and even more importantly: a goal that is reachable.

Your Plan & Goal: Needs To Be Reviewed Regularly

Everybody usually writes up their yearly goals for next year during December. What better time to review the last 11 months and what you’ve done during that time than the last 3 to 4 weeks of the year? Time to see where you’ve stepped aside and more importantly see where and what you could have changed so that you could have achieved your goals earlier or better yet, achieved them in a bigger way.

Now, everybody can draft up a plan to reach a goal but keeping focus on that goal (or goals) and making sure that you keep your eyes on them is a totally different thing. Which brings us to needing to keep an “eye on the ball”… and that’s not just a saying that we hear and is good for movies.

A quarterly review of your plan will always keep your goal in view and make sure that you’re not straying away from what needs to be done.

A Goal Without A Plan Is Just A Wish

You must have heard that one before I wrote it here. For many years now, I’ve always written down my goals. Have I reached all of them? I have to honest here, I haven’t. But one thing is for sure, once I had reviewed them, I was in better shape to see where I was within that timeframe and was also able to see what I was and wasn’t doing right and more importantly, how close I was to reaching that goal.

But I do agree… A goal without a plan…is well…just a plain wish.

So your next question is probably going to be “what does a good action plan have?’ Well let’s take a look.

The SMART Principle

A good action plan will always include several points or factors that need to be taken into consideration during your planning, implementation and review. A great action plan usually includes these points which, if you’ve been around a tad, you’ve either read or heard about. It’s called the SMART Principle and is critical to use when it comes to goal setting.

So what’s this SMART Principle? It basically says that once you’ve written down your goal or goals, you need to pass it through these four criteria:

  • Specific – has a well defined description of the goal you want to achieve. It can’t just be: “I want to be rich”. You need to be specific like: “I want to be making 3,000 dollars per month by the end of the year”. 
  • Measurable – includes measurable indicators to track your progress. Where will you be in 3 months? 6 months? 9 months?
  • Attainable – realistic and achievable within the experience, time, money, you have. Essentially, you can’t state, (contrary to many of the get-rich-quick schemes out there), that you’ll become a millionaire just by clicking several thousand times during the day.
  • Relevant – aligns with your other goals. You have to make sure that anything you do will provide help or knowledge in helping you attain your goal. Learning to dribble better wouldn’t be part of your goal of becoming a better internet marketer.
  • Timely – has a finishing date. I always like to put my goals for the year and review them quarterly. That way I can review them, realign what I’m not doing right; laugh at my missteps and go forward.

The Importance Of Writing It Down

We pretty much all live in a environment that relies more and more on computers, laptops, Macs, iPads and even more so, smart telephones. I don’t have to tell you, (even if we’ve become more and more dependent on these), how important it is in making sure that we keep our goals and action plan in writing.
Whether you use your telephone or you’re like me, old school and use a pen and paper, you need to make sure that you have easy access to your action plan. I also use a whiteboard which hangs in front of me in my office. That way, I can see point blank what I’ve got planned and it also gives me a chance to write down what I need to do on a daily, weekly and monthly basis.


This is one of the biggest points here. We need to keep ourselves accountable for either our missteps or our lack of action. Anytime we say that we will do something but don’t, we need to be accountable for that.

So many times in the past, I’ve told myself that I’d get this internet financial success thing going. The one big thing I have to be honest about is: my lack of accountability towards my lack of action. That stops here; I’m saying this to you all who are listening or reading me. I will be keeping myself accountable for NOT taking action when I said I would.

Be Prepared To Adapt And Make Changes

So you’ve got your plan, you’ve written it out and you’re ready to get things going. One thing you also need to be aware of and ready to do is to make changes and adapt your plan relative to those changes when they present themselves.

There are no perfect plans, but as long as you are able to adapt and make changes where necessary as well as keeping your goal in focus, there are no reasons why you can’t achieve them.

Like what you’re reading or have questions? Don’t be shy, write it up in the comments section for me to reply and more importantly, don’t forget to subscribe to our Newsletter!
To your success…to our success!

26 thoughts on “What’s Your Action Plan?”

  1. Great blog post! Having an action plan is crucial for achieving your goals in affiliate marketing. The SMART principle you mentioned is spot on – being specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and timely ensures that your goals are well-defined and achievable. Writing down your goals and action plan is also important for accountability and easy access. I review my goals and plan and check in each week, do a reflection at the end of each month, and adapt my plan as needed. Most importantly, I stay committed to taking action and do it consistently. With the right mindset and a solid plan, you can make significant progress in your affiliate marketing journey. Keep up the great work!

    1. Hi Alison,
      The option of reviewing your goals on a weekly basis is also a great one!
      Let’s not forget that taking a side-step doesn’t mean that you’re not committed to your goals; sometimes life throws a “curve ball” at you and it might even help you getting back on track.
      Thanks for dropping in and for your comment!

  2. I have a question, Marc. How would you hold yourself accountable for not following through on your goals? I can see celebrating when I do take action, but how would I hold myself accountable when I fail to follow my plan? There’s recognition, but would there be something more?
    Very interested,

    1. Hi Nakina,
      That is a very good Sunday morning question! LOL! Seriously though, one way I keep myself accountable is when I review my weekly, bi-weekly or monthly goals, if I see that I side-stepped from that goal, I look at what happened for me to do so and take note of how I resolved the issue and got back on track.
      As you mention, it isn’t as easy to hold yourself accountable when things go sideways as when you have successes but if you look at HOW you kept yourself accountable, you most definitely will be able to have less and less of these.
      Great comment! Thanks for providing it.

    1. Hi Kate,
      Thank you for your comment; there are different ways to keep track of your goals; being the “older” type, this one (SMART system I mention), has always been the easiest way for me to do so!
      All the best!

  3. Hey Marc, good idea to bring the SMART principle into the elaboration of your goals for your business. Were you recently inside your yearly evaluation process at your day job? 😄 However, that’s how it should be done. Also you are right when you say that a plan must be flexible, adjustable. Mine was modified slightly several times. When divided in several milestones, the adjustments of one milestone depends on the outcomes of the previous one.
    On this, have a good day!

    1. Hi Martin,
      Great comments as always! Yes, ironically, I just did the yearly evaluation at my day job and I also did come to the realization that I now also have to have these goals on top of the ones more personal for me – like for my business.
      Taking the time to go through them definitely helps – even if it does take time.
      All the best!

  4. I love the audio portion, well done and you have a really good voice for this! This post made me think about my own goals. Right now I am going from day to day as so much of this ‘tech’ stuff is overwhelming to me and the learning curve is steep. I do understand the marketing concepts and have goals there, but unless I can get through the how to put it out there, I’m just going to be slow. So rather than get too discouraged, I have daily and weekly goals. But…after going through this blog, I am going to write down, rewrite my longer term goals. Anyway, thank you and your blog is great!

    1. Great to read that you’re not getting discouraged Kae!
      The best part of writing down my goals has been about being able to cross them out once they’re done!
      Wishing you all the best!

  5. Hey Marc,

    Great post. I believe having strong long-term and short-term goals along the way is very important, along with action plans for executing the work to achieve these goals. It keeps you accountable and reminds you how well you are actually doing the work to reach your goals. Very powerful stuff and something I think is a must for success. I look forward to reading more of your journey.

    1. Thank you for dropping in and providing your comment Vanessa.
      Accountability is definitely key as well when it comes to goals; writing down your goals is one thing but if you don’t keep yourself accountable to them, then they are of little use.
      Take care!

  6. Hi Marc,

    Thanks for sharing the SMART principle. I am old school like you. I prefer writing things down. It is easier, especially when your plan involves drawing some diagram.

    In fact, I heard that by writing down your goals, you are 42 percent more likely to achieve them.

    1. Hi Alan,
      Thanks for your comment – wasn’t sure about the percentage part about writing them down but I was sure that you had a better chance to reach them if you wrote them. Appreciate confirming that I was right!
      Wishing you all the best.

  7. As per usual, that was a breath of fresh air listening to your podcast and reading the content of your Blog with you. My action plan sits in a book in front of me on my desktop. I’ve used the SMART Principle throughout much of my work in the corporate world but this time around I switched it up.

    I just know that on a daily basis I’m putting things on my task list that will help move my business forward. And a monthly review helps me stay focussed on the plan and making revisions wehre required.

    Nice layout of the blog post. I look forward to more.

    1. Thanks for dropping in and providing me with your comment Robert.
      I think many of us “old schoolers” tend to gravitate to a written form or another – even if we are inclined to use technology, some things are best used like in the past: pen & paper suits me just well!
      Looking forward to our continued success!

  8. Marc, sometimes we do question ourselves on whether we should’ve started something. But I think in this case the answer is absolutely, the opportunity we have with this is potentially huge but it does require planning and a lot of new skills. I like how you’ve laid out the smart objectives. These are very good because they have to be practical and attainable. I think the most important thing about a plan is that it can change, you can adjust it. Just because there’s a plan doesn’t mean it all has to happen that way because things change. But remember change the plan but don’t change the goal thanks, Atif

    1. Hi Atif,
      Great comment; mostly about NOT changing the goal but making sure that we adapt the plan to achieve the goal.
      Appreciate your comment and as always, looking forward to continuing our journey!

  9. Hi Marc,
    The SMART principle is a great idea to have at hand. Thank you for that. That’s something I might put on my wall, so I see it every day, and I stay accountable for what is important. I listened to your podcast, and you really do have the voice for this. Splendid work!

    1. Hi Meredith,
      Thank you for your great comment, blushing a bit about the voice though! LOL!
      It’s a great idea to have it close by so that you do go back to it on a regular basis. Don’t forget; your ability to adapt to changes while getting to your goal(s) will also determine your success!
      All the best!

  10. Hey Marc,
    Great post! It’s true that having an action plan for your goals is so important!
    Being an employment counsellor over the last 15 years I’ve helped so many client’s build an employment action plan. However, I tend to battle with my own discipline in this area. Thank you for bringing this to the front of my mind, now I need to do something about it 🙂
    Onward and forward 🙂

    1. Hi Denny,
      Thank you for your post; action plans can come in different areas – and you’ve just brought one that I wasn’t aware of!
      Thanks for taking the time to drop in and comment.

  11. Marc,

    The old saying is fail to plan, plan to fail. A plan is a must for success. No it doesn’t have to be 100’s of pages like some brick and mortar businesses require. Non the less taking time using your guild is a great starting point.

    One thing we need to keep in mind is to keep it simple. The more complex you make it the less likely you’ll follow it.

    Great advice on planning.


    1. Hi CJ,
      Keeping it simple; it seems that we love to make things more and more complicated. I love it when Dean, Sophie or Glenn tell us that we need to keep things simple – always easier to get done!
      Thanks for your comment!

  12. HI Marc, Excellent advice on goal setting and I totally agree. Think it’s also vital to even get to daily and now goals so we’re always working towards our ultimate gream life,

    1. Hi Steve,
      Thanks for your comment and yes, for me goal setting has been an integral part of many things I’ve done so far. The one big factor that has changed now is the fact of having mentors to support me in reaching those goals.
      All the best!

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