Broadly, go-to-market (GTM) refers to the act of bringing a new revenue-generating business practice to the right buyers.
In other words, GTM is the motion of your entire company (or at least the marketing and sales teams) when introducing a new product.
Naturally, there are many moving parts during this. The best GTM strategies match the level of complexity with a level of flexibility and resiliency. A great GTM strategy will bend but not break under the internal and external pressure of introducing a new product to the market.
More than just a strategy for one particular product, a GTM is also a philosophy and a distinct way of organizing your employees into a structure that best suits the needs of your upcoming product launch.
GTM is a complicated subject, so today’s blog will cover just what you need to know to get started on creating a GTM of your own.
What is GTM in B2B?
A GTM is not a single, one-off marketing or sales strategy for a single product launch.
Instead, you should imagine your GTM motion as the form your company takes when it’s about to launch a certain product or revenue source.
This form will need to be malleable to adapt to the needs of each individual launch. On top of this, your GTM needs to be structured in a way that holds employees responsible from the top down.
Ultimately, your GTM should be:
- A repeatable and iterative process for revenue source introductions.
- Scalable. In fact, a strong GTM may even answer the question of how to scale your business.
- A cultural force for your employees to rally around.
Types of GTM Motions
Before we get into the motions, let’s briefly mention the three main parts of a GTM: strategy, planning, and execution.
Each product launch will necessitate different strategies, planning, and execution, as well as a unique mixture of each.
Start by considering how you intend to bring your product to market. Is sales leading the charge with outbounds? Or are you taking a more subtle approach and looking to integrate with partners and scale alongside the ecosystem?
Here are three examples of GTM motion types and how the planning, strategy, and execution look for each one.
- Strategy: Utilize content marketing to drive traffic to conversion channels.
- Planning: Since this is a fairly traditional strategy, your organization shouldn’t need to move too much to accommodate it. Still, all players with skin in the game need to be involved in the strategy session. This means having sales and marketing together with senior leadership determine what success looks like before any decisions are finalized.
- Execution: Your marketing team will generate and capture demand with high-quality content. MQLs will be forwarded to sales for outbound follow-up.
- Strategy: Become a category leader by introducing a new movement or idea that’s meant to transform the marketplace.
- Planning: Generating an idea or concept on this level takes decades of experience and knowledge. If your leadership team has something they think can truly change things, it’s time to figure out how to tell people about it.
- Execution: You’ll need to establish the credibility of an industry leader. Results are king here – legions of happy customers will be all the proof you need.
- Strategy: Let the quality of your product be the loudest voice in the customer’s head. If you have something customers don’t think they can live without, you’ve got a source of revenue and an invaluable business partnership.
- Planning: Your product should be made from the ground up to influence customers. A combination of free and paid features can help here – customers will stick around if value is being provided for nothing in return.
- Execution: It’s so good that users will naturally spend the time to experience the product and use it to facilitate further deals and feature discovery. Sales and marketing should be on hand ready to take advantage of the demand your product will generate for itself.
4 Go-To-Market Strategy Tips
Here are a few tips when creating a GTM strategy from scratch.
1. Resist the Urge to Assign a Single Owner
It’s tempting to eliminate the possibility of “too many cooks in the kitchen” by assigning a single employee to hold responsible for the GTM. We believe this is a mistake.
It’s more important that the entire organization feels the pressure of accountability. Naturally, since more people are involved and being held responsible, there are more angles to consider and more employees to keep happy.
However, this increase in the challenge of people management should be offset by the increased synchronicity of your operation.
2. Be Comfortable Introducing New Roles and Responsibilities
It’s not necessary to change your entire org chart every time you launch a new product. But it is critically important that employees on all levels get comfortable with slightly different roles regularly.
The more each employee knows about how to operate in diverse roles, the easier it will be for them to adapt under pressure. This kind of adaptability is exactly what a strong GTM motion should aim for.
3. Emphasize the Team Nature of GTM
Business is a team game. GTM, being one of the most important aspects of your business, is the ultimate teambuilding tool.
Look at your upcoming GTM motion as an opportunity for your business to prove it belongs. Each employee in your organization should be involved in and aware of the strategy and what they’re expected to contribute. Motivating employees is its own challenge, but you can start by emphasizing the unique nature of the situation (a product launch) from the top down.
4. Choose One Strategy and Stick to It
When faced with such a large decision, it can be difficult to even begin searching for the correct path. This problem will only be exacerbated when you’re involving so many employees from disparate areas of your company, each of whom will bring unique concerns and perspectives.
Don’t fall for the trap of assuming you can perfect a GTM in a board room.
Avoid decision paralysis. Don’t worry about if your GTM motion is perfect – because it isn’t! No plan ever is. Instead of waiting around for the exact right moment, or for when you no longer feel any anxiety or uncertainty about your plan, pick a path and stick to it.
You can and will adapt on the fly as issues arise.
What is a Good B2B GTM Strategy?
Every great GTM strategy should be distinct from all the ones used before it.
The simple reason for this is that no two companies, let alone product launches, are ever the same. No two moments in time can be directly compared. No material conditions are ever identical. Your GTM strategy should follow this principle as well. Bruce Lee once observed that water takes the shape of any container it enters, yet is never anything other than water.
Your GTM strategy should be like water: true to itself but adaptable enough to generate solutions to problems in real time and ultimately take whatever shape is needed to drive growth.
If you’re interested in learning more, Hushly’s Efficient Growth at Scale eBook contains even more information on creating GTM strategies at any scale.