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Don’t try to win every battle at once. Don’t expect to grow your site’s viewership to 100,000 readers in six weeks. Don’t try to grow your Twitter follower count to 50,000 in three months. There are social media professionals and companies in this world that have been at it a lot longer and doing it better than you, and they’re barely breaking 100,000 readers and 50,000 followers.

Everyone is going to ask you about audience size. It’s an easy way to gauge success, and is an important metric, for sure, but it’s not the only one that tells a story, and you need to merchandise your victories immediately.

Audience growth takes time. It does not happen overnight. Expect at least six months to a year to start seeing significant organic growth, unless you plan on leveraging paid and earned media as a catalyst.

Instead, stay laser-focused on the key performance indicators you identified in planning. Figure out what you’d like your long-term goals to be – 12, 24 and 60 months, and then set milestones along the way. Make some semi-educated guesses, but don’t set them in stone. You’re either going to be disappointed or wildly surprised with them.

Remember this is a science experiment. Just be flexible, and adjust as necessary. If your first goal was to get 1,000 visitors to your blog in the first month, and you got 100, reassess and adjust your goals. If instead, you got 10,000 visitors, figure out what you did right, figure out how to repeat it, and then adjust accordingly.

Don’t shoot for the moon and then quit when you don’t hit it. Instead, start small, aim low, and win the battles you know you can win. Show the decision makers, the nay-sayers, and the bean counters your tiny victories and plot your growth from there.