Sales leaders of go to market (GTM) organizations are finding it tough to achieve their targets and are working hard to eliminate old practices and incorporate new ones. But, can sales leaders really make robust go to market strategies and compete in the market? In this article, discover 9 steps to future proof your go to market strategy. Read on to understand why these steps are important to remain in business.
What Is A Go To Market Strategy?
A GTM (go-to-market) strategy is a detailed and concrete action plan that describes how the marketing, sales, and customer success departments within a company will work together to launch either a new or existing product or service into the market.
Most businesses struggle to forecast their sales accurately and therefore miss targets. In fact, almost 80 percent of organizations miss their forecast numbers by 25 percent or more. In order to future proof your GTM strategy and hit your revenue targets, we recommend specific and immediate actions.
A GTM strategy brings its products or services to their target customers. It offers competitive advantage to businesses and takes into account different factors such as distribution and pricing. GTM strategy is mostly used when launching new products in an existing market, or existing products in a new market, or new products in a new market.
Benefits Of A Go To Market Strategy:
While a solid GTM plan offers numerous benefits to help and grow your business, we’re highlighting the main ones below:
- Cuts down the time to market
- Ensures successful product launches
- Boosts ability to adapt to change
- Reduces costs linked to failed product launches
- Manages challenges related to product innovation
- Leads to better customer experiences
- Streamlines regulatory compliance
Main Components Of A Go To Market Plan:
The challenge today is that sales reps are no longer the primary product informers and educators for the buyers. That era has now gone. Buyers can easily look for all the required information online that can help them make decisions. They are expecting more, but seeing only limited value during their interaction with reps.
That’s why it’s critical that sales teams must have more expertise and knowledge than what the internet is already offering to buyers. Sales reps must show how their product adds value to the client’s business or how it improves their daily lives. Reps need to apply business-wide thinking while selling their products. Here are some of the main components of a go to market plan.
- Market: Map out the market you want to sell your products and services to.
- Customers: Identify your target customers across your defined market.
- Distribution: Plan out how you will deliver your products and services to your customers.
- Unique selling proposition (USP): Identify the features or the perceived benefit in your offerings that make it unique from your competitors.
- Pricing: Set up the different pricing bands for your products or services that you want to offer to your customers.
How To Create A Go To Market Strategy?
Businesses must adjust themselves and become future proof to remain competitive. Follow these 9 steps to future proof your GTM strategy.
1. Define Your Target Market:
No matter how good your product or service is, it isn’t for everyone. Not every person has the problem that your business specializes in solving. It also isn’t cost-efficient to sell to every market available. Therefore, it is important to determine the correct audience in your go to market strategy. Determining the correct audience to target depends on such audience’s demographics, buyer habits and personas, and geographical location.
Furthermore, your company must also list certain external markets to tap into. Although certain markets may not be aligned with your company’s niche or have similar attributes to your target audience, particular markets may still have accessibility and opportunities that should not be overlooked. Markets that are easy to reach, large in size, and small in competition are the best candidates for expansion.
2. Understand The Buyer Journey:
Every buyer goes through a different process to make purchases. Therefore, businesses need to make the best effort to treat buyer’s as individuals. Even though your business likely cannot tailor their advertisements to each individual buyer, analyzing the journey can help attract the largest amount of customers.
Each buyer goes through the awareness stage (realizing they have a need), the consideration stage (identifying potential solutions), and decision stage (choosing a specific product or service for the solution). By understanding this journey, your business can tailor their GTM plan around the most frequent stages.
3. Blend Your Sales, Marketing, and Operations:
The core of a future proof sales org must contain unmatched efficiency of individual sales reps. Sales reps need lean processes in place along with operational and strategic tools to quicken up efficiencies. This helps them enhance their conversion rates across all the sales pipeline stages. Also, all sales processes must be streamlined end-to-end from prospecting to closing.
To achieve this, the best performing sales orgs do not add more sales reps. They involve marketing and operations teams during the initial stages of the sales process, and use tools/technology to automate all their sales processes. This helps sales reps focus and spend more time on the actual consultation with clients.
4. Encourage Customer Engagement:
How will you know what clients and customers need without asking? Customer engagement is key in GTM strategies as your company can get a feel on what needs and wants can be tended to. This process starts by companies researching into what issues their market is dealing with that their product or service can solve.
Conducting this research will then allow your company to translate into how your product or service can provide value in such situations. This can be done through testing products/services in the field, or interacting with customers through social media.
5. Strengthen Advertisements:
Once your team has done thorough research into what customers are seeking, it is then time to tailor advertisements to the general needs of that market. This process not only includes generating content around those conflicts discovered, but also involves determining the best platforms to use. Different methods of advertising will provide different results, so it is important to determine which platforms will provide the best return on advertising investment.
6. Content Marketing To Attract Specific Leads:
It is far easier to attract leads that already have knowledge about what business you are into, because those leads probably have subconscious interest in solving the issues your product or service can cover. Therefore, content marketing will help gain traffic to your websites or social media pages.
The primary action to content marketing is researching specific keywords that your leads tend to use. The goal of keyword research is to use certain phrases that are relevant to your market so when these leads use their search engine, your product or service will be at the top of their search results.
Once you have determined your keywords to use, it is then time to research for content that centers around those keywords and brainstorm topics to write about. Then, create and publish graphic designs, articles, and social media posts that will attract buyers to your website.
7. Create A Budget:
A go-to-market plan is going to require investments in order to make a return. This not only means operating expenses, but also determining the price of your product/service. Multiple factors should be considered when pricing a product. For example, your price should be compared to competitors’ price on their similar products in hopes that your company can gain a competitive advantage in that department. Also, the value of your product and perceived price expectations should be carefully considered as well.
Operating expenses should be highlighted in your go to market strategy framework. Every element of your go to market plan, such as advertising, research, etc. should have established costs based on expected number of transactions, website traffic, and other factors.
8. Focus On Competitive Advantage:
For your business to reach its maximum sales and revenue potential, your go to market model needs to consistently highlight competitive advantage, or in other words, what attributes can help your business stand out from other competitors.
All of the segments of your go to market template have potential to display a competitive advantage. Some of these include:
Markets: Are we able to reach other markets our competitors can’t?
Problem Solving: Can our product fix something that hasn’t been fixed?
Design: What features of our product are the most difficult to duplicate?
Finance: Can we determine a price better than other competitors?
Advertising: Do we have a platform where we have the highest engagement?
9. Use The Power Of AI And ML:
Never underestimate the power of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) in sales forecasting, as these allow you to make many smart decisions. The combination of data, analytics, AI, and ML helps you improve sales forecasts significantly. AI in sales allows you to build predictive models that analyze disparate data sets that are generated during a sales cycle, and reveal insights that can impact a deal. On the other hand, ML algorithms enable your software to learn your data and improve over time.
AI-powered tools can help you make sales forecasts by product offerings, regions, and market segments. They can also track your historical data and offer real-time updates. ML-based solutions can effectively gather relevant data (such as buyer behavior, preferences, and dislikes) from CRMs, emails, and social media. AI and ML based software can guide your sales reps with the next steps for closing deals.
Go To Market Strategy Examples
Here are some of the great go to market plan examples:
1. Microsoft Surface:
Despite Microsoft Windows already dominating the computer industry, their go to market strategy framework for their own tablets was still effective. They sought to tackle the common issue tablet users face by marketing the Surface as a tablet that has the functionality of a computer. Their target demographic became college students and everyday users that would benefit from a lighter version of a computer.
2. Southwest Airlines:
When Southwest entered the airline industry in the 70’s they were in need of an established go to market model to advance their position in the market. They chose to do this by addressing the issue of connecting flights. Instead of using a “hub and spoke” system that airlines typically use, Southwest used a “point-to-point” system that allowed them to take passengers directly to their stop. Today, only 20% of Southwest passengers have to use connecting flights, one of many features that has made Southwest a preferred airline.
FitBit used a go to market plan to launch their SmartCoach service, which is a premium service and personal training app that connects to a consumer’s FitBit. Their campaign used paid and owned channels to reach their target market. They also used email marketing, social media, and push notifications to reach potential new customers. Their gtm strategy proved to be a success, as they accumulated about $192 million in revenue.
Vuclip, a mobile streaming service, is a prime example of a company that uses gtm planning because they do a solid job of analyzing the buyer’s journey, and then creating a competitive advantage out of it. Their service gained an appeal by becoming a must-have for global markets that struggled with streaming buffering issues. Instead of building for enterprise, they built their framework for the consumer, which resulted in 41 million customers across 3,000 cities worldwide.
Most of all, to future proof your go to market plan, you must position your business ahead of your competitors in a sustainable manner. Start now to future proof and achieve your sales goals.
Aviso AI’s integrated platform helps sales leaders of GTM organizations strategize, communicate, and move quickly together so that you go to market with solutions that address your customer needs quickly. Our advanced features such as pipeline analytics and relationship intelligence provide insight into the strength of your sales funnel. Aviso helps sales, marketing, and customer success teams with 360-degree view of customer information enabled by real time CRM information updates.