Go to Market Strategy – Sales & Marketing Tactics
An organization’s go to market strategy should address how customers will be acquired, on-boarded, retained and up-sold. It should also address how each account will be expanded to penetrate other users, departments, functions and business units.
The go to market strategy should be constructed to meet or exceed the company’s goals and objectives. The specific go to market strategies will provide a framework to guide go to market tactics – the daily, weekly, monthly and quarterly activities required to achieve the strategies and fulfill objectives.
A well-constructed go to market strategy provides a blueprint for delivering a product or service to market and forces the organization to think through sales, marketing, development, partners, services and support.
Of course the best go to market strategies are useless unless they produce the desired business outcomes. And, there is always the constant requirement to do more with less, meaning every resource must be optimized, all the time. Fortunately, numerous proven marketing and sales planning templates have been developed that can be leveraged to develop one’s go to market strategy and flawlessly guide the go to market tactics.
Often it is necessary to conduct an assessment of where an organization is before developing its GTM strategy. Be sure to ask the right questions and use a quantitative framework to document current state and future state.
Specifically, spend some time asking and answering:
- Where are you now? What is the current state of the business?
- Where do you want to be? What is the desired state for the business?
- What has to happen? Is it incremental or transformational? How much will it cost and how long will it take?
Go to market tactics are a series of actions that lead to the implementation of a specific go-to-market strategy. Marketing tactics are the activities that B2B marketers perform every day. These may include creating content, executing events, posting or responding on social media, sending emails, pulling lists, PPC, SEM, coordinating with the sales team, etc.
Efficient and effective go to market plans connect the organization’s strategy to customer acquisition and retention. Go to market strategy and tactics must address the areas in which an organization should compete and how and when a sales team has a high probability of winning. The keys to successful go to market strategy and tactics are:
- Identifying target customers with a high propensity to purchase
- Crafting value propositions tailored to personas involved in the buying process
- Ensuring customers realize the value perceived during the purchase process
Go to Market Strategy Examples
Go to Market Strategy examples have been created (by a CMO with decades of experience spanning Fortune 1000 companies and Startups) for B2B companies to document their go to market strategy, create the fundamental GTM building blocks (differentiation, value drivers, sales messaging), develop integrated marketing campaigns to create marketing qualified leads and to design and implement a demand management system to convert marketing leads to qualified sales opportunities.
Go to Market Strategies & Insights
Pragmatic, actionable, how-to posts, written by a CMO about GTM Strategy, Marketings Plans, Marketing Process, Marketing Techniques, Sales & Marketing Strategy, Technology Trends and B2B Market Research. B2B Marketing insights are shared based on years of developing and executing go to market strategy at public and private companies, advising portfolio companies and teaching at the executive MBA level.
Go to Market Strategies & Tactics – Market Maturity
Successful go to market strategies are based on the relative market, technology and competitors. The available market, served market and target market not only need to be quantified but the markets adoption of the technology needs to be documented and managed. The technology adoption curve or market adoption curve provides a useful way to break down the market into five homogeneous market segments: innovators, early adopters, early majority, late majority, laggards.
Innovators typically represent the first 2.5% of the market and are the first step to concur in any go to market penetration strategy. Innovators are the first individuals or organizations that adopt the newest technology. By definition, innovators are willing to take risks as the perceived benefits or being first outweigh the costs and the chance of failure is understood.
Early Adopters are the next set of adopters and they represent 13.5% of the market. Early adopters also invest early on in new technologies, not as technologists, but to address their concrete problems. Often times, early adopters are key influencers in a market and are considered thought leaders. Innovators prove that the technology works but it is the early adopters that figure out how to apply the technology efficiently and effectively.
The Early Majority represents 34% of the market and when combined with Innovators and Early Adopters this represents 50% of the available market. It takes the Early Majority much more time to adopt (as short as 5 years and as long as 10 years).
The Late Majority represents another 34% of the market. This segment is much more of a Missouri state of mind – Show me. This segment approaches technology with a high degree of skepticism and will only adopt after the majority has adopted.
Laggards represent 16% of the market and many industries never penetrate this segment. The sentiment in this group is that the old way works and that the new way will create more work, it won’t work and that will create more work. This group has an aversion to change-agents and tend to be older and clock-pinchers.
Go to Market Strategies & Tactics – Competitive Differentiation
Product, solution or services differentiation is the process of distinguishing a product, solution or service from similar offerings or substitutes, to make it more attractive to the served target market.
Product, solution or services differentiation is a marketing strategy whereby a company attempts to make their product, solution or service unique stand out from competitors. At its core, product, solution or service differentiation means that some feature, physical attribute, capability or substantive difference exists.
The presence of differentiation is not enough for a company to pin it’s go to market stregy on to be successful. The differentiation has to be received to be important to the end-user. More often than not, engineers and developers will point to the latest technology or being able to do something faster, better or cheaper but at the end of the day it will have no impact unless the people in the buying process perceive that differentiation to be important.
And, once differentiation is established that buyers value, there is one more hoop to jump through – credibility. Even if a company can communicate something that is important to an individual in the customer buying process, it will not resonate unless it is believable. Just because words are on a web page or typed in a brochure or white paper do not make them truths. Usually, credibility will come from a peer, subject matter expert, analyst, third party study etc.
Differentiation comes in three primary forms:
- Comparative – other vendors have provide this feature, function, capability or benefit but they do it differently
- Holistic – the vendor does not provide the feature, function, capability or benefit directly but the vendor’s partner ecosystem provides the differentiation.
- Unique – the vendor provides the feature, function, capability based on something on it can do – no other organization currently does it.
As a company develops its g to market tactics, it’s a best practice to complete a competitive differentiation worksheet to identify the differentiation that is meaningful and relevant to the market and the difficulty to deliver it.