Five Steps to a Winning Go-to-Market Strategy
Innovative marketing executive and business consultant Ameeta Soni shares key considerations in crafting a go-to-market strategy to maximize revenues
It’s never too early to hone your go-to-market (GTM) strategy for a new product, service, or market. A powerful GTM strategy can ensure you’re targeting the right audience and uniquely solving its pain points.
So what’s the best place to start? In my experience, following these five steps can help you build a GTM strategy that will position you for success:
1. Target Audience: Market, Companies, Buyer Personas. While a product may be well suited for several markets, it is best to focus on the most attractive. For example, when Netflix saw diminished demand for DVD rentals, it rolled out a streaming service as a hedge. Though the company still rents physical DVDs, it has become as synonymous with streaming as Kleenex is to tissues!
In defining your target market, ask: How large is the market? Does the product fit the market needs? What are the competitive forces? What stage companies within this market work best? Who are the buyers and influencers, and their pain points? Whose budget? Buying process? Any compliance directives that you can avail?
It is critical to understand the buyers and buying process. For example, a past employer’s new product could be sold into two of its existing markets. However, one market was more attractive because it had the same buyer and budget for its current product, shortening the sales cycle
2. Positioning/Messaging. Find ways to resonate with the target audience in a way that answers these questions: Is the new product replacing or complementing an existing product? What is your unique value proposition? How does the market perceive your and competitive products? What is your competitive differentiator? Is the offering positioned as a basic or a premium one?
3. Pricing/revenue models. Pricing can have a significant impact on a company’s bottom line. Value-based pricing tends to have the broadest effect on customers and revenues. Choosing the right strategy requires a keen understanding of the buyers and buying process, the right value metrics, suitable pricing tiers, and a thoughtful discounting approach.
Answer these fundamental questions when picking a revenue model: Does the model fit with your offering and price point? Does it address the target market’s pain point, buyers, and buying process? Does it account for the competition and reiterate your value proposition?
4. Sales approach. Important considerations for selecting the right sales approach include: Where and how do you find your target prospects? How do they buy? What is the best distribution model for your offering? Do you need additional sales resources?
The customer acquisition cost (CAC) increases with sales complexity; it needs to sync with customer revenue/lifetime value.
Source: David Skok
5. Marketing approach. Market size, competition, product complexity, fit, price, customer lifetime, and level of customer engagement are critical components of the marketing strategy. In addition, tools like SEMrush Traffic Analytics can provide insight into your competitors’ successes and failures.
Earlier research about buyers and their pain points and the positioning and messaging is valuable input regarding the type and timing of communications and marketing campaigns.
As you can see, developing a killer GTM strategy is a nuanced process that requires several strategic steps. However, getting it right can reap big rewards by opening up new opportunities to keep you competitive, no matter what the headwinds in the marketplace.
Ameeta Soni is a strategy, marketing, and business development expert. As principal at management consultancy Altek Consulting, she drives revenues and profits for tech and digital health companies, often serving as an interim CMO. Her expertise includes strategy, new product development and launch, go-to-market, demand generation, thought leadership, and business development. Previously, she was CMO and SVP, Business Development at VFA, and CMO at PlatformQ Health, WorldAPP, and Assemble Systems. In addition, Ameeta serves on the Maroon Venture Partners Fund’s investment committee and holds board roles with portfolio companies HomeBinder, Ompractice, and TOP the organic project. Ameeta earned her M.B.A from the University of Chicago, her M.S. from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and her B.Sc. (Honors) from St. Stephen’s College.