In a company, long-term success is frequently the result of meticulous planning. This is why you’ll need a comprehensive go-to-market (GTM) strategy if you’re launching a new product, exposing a new service, or undertaking a rebrand.
As you strive to enter a new market, many things can go wrong, and your GTM plan is what you fall back on if they do. Without one, avoiding the traps and hurdles that come with a launch will be impossible.
In this RisePath post, we’ll define a GTM strategy, explain why they’re so important, and show you how to develop one that will help you succeed in your next business venture.
What is a go-to-market strategy?
A go-to-market strategy is a detailed action plan that lays out exactly what you need to accomplish to succeed in a new business. Your go-to-market strategy should include information about your product, why you’re introducing it, who it’s for, the problem it answers, and how you’ll attract and sell clients.
A GTM strategy is necessary for the following reasons:
- New product launches for startups
- Businesses that are releasing a new product
- Re-launches of products or brands
- Businesses repositioning an existing product in a new market
The GTM strategy is a component of your overall marketing plan. The GTM strategy focuses on a specific product launch, whereas the marketing plan defines how you sell your brand as a whole.
Your target market, product positioning, sales strategy, and marketing plan should all be clarified in your GTM strategy.
There is no one-size-fits-all GTM strategy for every product or brand. Because no two goods are alike, each will require a unique, focused launch strategy. As a result, depending on their specific business case, different organisations will need to prioritise different components of their strategy.
How a go-to-market plan aids the success of your product
It’s not simple to launch a successful product; even major brands struggle to get new items off the ground. There are numerous reasons for a new product’s failure, but most of them may be prevented with a well-planned introduction.
A comprehensive GTM approach aids in:
- Reducing the hazards of the launch, such as wasting time, money, and resources.
- Reducing the time it takes to get a product to market.
- Creating demand and making sales possible.
- Ascertaining that regulatory compliance is met.
- Ascertaining client satisfaction.
- Increasing return on investment (ROI).
- Determining future prospects and improving products.
5 things to think about as you plan your go-to-market strategy
Let’s briefly go through the components you’ll need to understand and leverage throughout the entire process before we get into how to design an effective go-to-market strategy.
To develop an effective GTM strategy, you must first determine the market(s) you intend to enter. This comprises both the amount of demand for your goods as well as its positioning (and pricing) within that market. Consider the following inquiries:
- What market(s) are you aiming for?
- What problem(s) does your product solve, and how is it different from the competition?
- What evidence do you have that your product is needed?
- What pricing strategy do you employ?
The target audience
There are only so many people that have a need for a product or service, as well as the motive and means to purchase it. Knowing who they are, allows you to target them specifically, allowing you to get more bang for your buck with your marketing and sales budget.
You should be as specific as possible here. The more information you have about your customers, the easier it will be to sell them your goods. You need to discover:
- Who will buy your product, and how will they feel about the problem it solves?
- Is there a subset of these markets that would be more interested in your product?
- Are you looking for companies or individuals?
Demand and competition
It’s critical that you comprehend the market you’re entering. No product lives in a vacuum, and each product must consider different levels of competition and demand before launching. Consider the following:
- Which other businesses provide a comparable product or service to yours?
- Is your product in high demand?
- Is the market saturated, and if so, what is your approach for differentiation?
- How do you think your opponent will react to your launch?
- What market trends are currently (or may become) relevant to your launch?
The way you get your product to a shop or a customer’s location is referred to as distribution. You might require a third-party partner to distribute your product. Consider the following:
- Is it a physical or digital product?
- What are your plans for selling and distributing your product?
- How much demand do you anticipate, and how will this impact your distribution process?
- Will you be selling from a store?
- Who will be your vendors?
Depending on your product, you might need to take a more sales- or marketing-oriented strategy. Salespeople may not be as critical in the customer journey for some products (such as digital apps). Others will necessitate a sales team as well as all of the tools and resources necessary to close deals.
- What is the size of your market?
- Will you hire a salesman or go with a self-service model?
- Do you sell to companies or individuals?
- What is the complexity of your product?
- Because you have a long or complex sales cycle, do you need to build long-term relationships with your customers?
All of these factors will assist you in determining the best strategy for a successful launch.
How to create a successful go-to-market strategy
With that in mind, it’s time to consider how to develop a comprehensive GTM plan.
Remember that the approach should just serve as a guide and that it is not set in stone. As you hear input from clients as the market evolves, you should adapt and improve it.
1. Conduct research to learn more about your target market.
Identifying your buyer personas is the first step in a successful GTM approach. You must understand who you are selling to.
You must conduct research about the types of people who will be interested in your product in order to establish a buyer persona. Consider this: Who has the issues that my product addresses?
You should include the following information about the consumer while constructing buyer personas:
- Points of discomfort
- Patterns and history of purchases
- Online habits
2. Decide on your messaging
Next, decide on the type of messaging that will persuade consumers to buy your product.
A value matrix is the best approach to do this. Make a chart with the buyer personas you identified in the previous stage.
Each buyer persona should have a problem or a pain point. First, describe how your product addresses each pain area. Then rephrase it in the form of a message that is tailored to the customer persona.
3. Choose your routes of acquisition.
The approaches and platforms you’ll utilise to attract new clients are known as acquisition channels. When it comes to acquisition channels, you have a lot of possibilities, including:
- Marketing with content
- The internet
- Search engine optimization
- Email advertising
- Publications (TV, radio, print, online)
- Trade displays or events
- Cold calling
Your buyer personas come into play here. Consider who you’re marketing to and where they hang out online, then pick the channels that will generate the greatest interest.
Whatever technique you take, make sure to track your progress to ensure you’re on track to meet your objectives. In this manner, you may optimise your strategy to make it more streamlined and efficient.
4. Create a market plan.
It’s now time to turn your study into a marketing and sales strategy. This strategy should make use of the data you’ve acquired to create an action plan for increasing product awareness in your target audiences.
Consider the following factors in your strategy:
- Your personal brand.
- The buying process.
- How will you generate demand for your product?
- What more resources will you employ?
5. Create a marketing strategy
Now that you’ve laid the groundwork for your go-to-market strategy, it’s time to pick a sales approach that will propel your product into the marketplace.
There are various popular sales efforts; whatever one(s) you employ will be determined by your product and company. The following are the four most prevalent GTM sales strategies:
- Internal sales.
- Outside sales.
- Channel model.
There are a few aspects that you must include in your plan, regardless of which sales technique you choose. Among them are:
- Assistance with training.
- Customer/client acquisition.
- Resources and tools.
Keep in mind that you can mix and match these techniques and components, and the best combination will depend on your product, market, and target consumer base, among other factors.
6. Get ready for the launch
It’s almost time to press the submit button and release your product into the wild. So, what are your last-minute preparations?
- Customer service.
- Managers of customer relationships.
- How will you measure customer satisfaction?
7. Set your long-term budget and resources.
It’s not the same as crossing a finish line when your product hits the market; there’s still work to be done. To be successful, you must continually nurture your product through smart marketing techniques.
You may also discover that your product needs additional development (e.g., bug fixes) as well as iterative upgrades or capability enhancements.
To ensure the long-term success of your product and brand, all of these things demand budgeting and resources, so keep this in mind as you launch.
8. Refine and test your strategy
Similarly, once your product is released, you may discover that your strategy needs to be adjusted. Your GTM plan, as previously said, is not set in stone. In reality, the reverse should be true.
You must be flexible and alter your approach as you obtain input from the market and your clients. You could need to tweak your messaging, ads, or pitches. You can also discover that certain groups of your target audience aren’t reacting and need to locate others who do.
Decide on a set of success measurements, or KPIs, to measure your progress. Consistent tracking and A/B testing will show you if you’re meeting your goals, where you’re falling short, and how you can improve your plan.
Launching a new product is difficult, but with a go-to-market strategy, you have a considerably better chance of success. You’ll get a competitive advantage and be well on your way to becoming profitable if you have a clear plan in place.