Go to Market Guide

How to Create a Go-To-Market Strategy: 8 Step Framework

How to Create a Go-To-Market Strategy: 8 Step Framework

A go-to-market strategy framework isn’t something you can cook up in a five-minute meeting with the marketing department. It’s a multifaceted strategy, and sales or marketing-based thinking will only get you so far. 

To develop an effective go-to-market framework, you need a plan made up of simple go-to-market steps. Break it down into bite-size chunks, and you can systematically implement the steps and course-correct if necessary. 

When you’re ready for your next product launch, grab a pen and paper or load up a blank document on your computer and write out the steps we’ve laid out below. That way, you can approach your GTM strategy framework with a clear methodology, keeping your colleagues in the loop so everyone is on the same page.

Here’s how to create a go-to-market strategy in eight simple steps.

1. Figure out your ideal buyer persona

When introducing a new product to market, it’s important to figure out your ideal buyer persona. Whether you run a startup or head up a large company, knowing your customer is critical to long-term success.

For those that don’t know, a buyer persona is your ideal customer. If you can imagine who this is in detail, you can deduce what they might want from your product and what type of messaging will resonate most.

How do you create a clear image of your ideal buyer persona? Start with what your market research tells you. If you’ve already released a similar product to market, trawl through the data and see what comes up. If not, carry out the market research and see who your closest competitors’ customers are.

Here’s some information that’s useful to have for your buyer persona profile:

  •  Household income 
  •  Level of education 
  •  Hobbies or interests 
  •  Personal and professional goals 
  •  Spending habits

Once you’ve built up a clear picture of your ideal buyer persona, develop your messaging and move forward with your GTM strategy. Just remember to keep this image in mind throughout the process, as it’ll inform everything from your sales strategy to your pricing model.

2. Clarify your brand messaging

Brand messaging is a cornerstone of any marketing campaign since it conveys your business values and what you represent. If your messaging isn’t congruent across platforms, you’ll find it hard to build your online reputation and credibility. 

Customers value authenticity, so if you can prove that you mean what you say and hit your target audience with the right kind of messaging, you’ll be in a better position to convert leads. 

If this is your first product, you’ll have a clean slate to work with. Build a clear image of what you want your brand to be known for. If you already have a reputation and you’ve been trading for a while, stay consistent with your current brand messaging

Think about how your latest product aligns with your brand and how it solves a problem for your customers.

3. Identify your key marketing channels

One of the most important steps in any GTM strategy is identifying your key marketing channels. 

Once you have your brand messaging locked down, start thinking about what avenues you’ll use to get the word out there. As we discussed in the previous section of this guide, Best Go to Market Channels, there are many viable marketing channels you can use depending on whether you’re a B2C or B2B business.

4. Figure out your pricing

While a pricing model might come to you in the initial ideas stage of the product development process, it’s always a good idea to use data to inform your choice.

If you enter the market with a steep price tag, you could scare off customers. If you lowball yourself and make the product too cheap, customers might assume that the quality is inferior, or you could end up undercutting your profit margins. As such, market research should underpin any discussion around pricing, as should your ideal buyer persona.

The goal of your pricing should be long-term sustainability, though you can adjust it down the line if necessary. To price your product, consider the following factors:

Variable costs

Anything from packaging to shipping can be considered a variable cost for a product, and you need to account for these costs if you want to make a profit. If one of your marketing methods relies on affiliate partners, that could be an extra cost to consider.

Fixed costs

Fixed costs are the same regardless of the quantity of product you sell. They’re more simple to calculate yet easy to overlook. An example of a fixed cost is a rental fee for a production facility.

Profit margin

Start with an idea in mind of your profit margin percentage, and then figure out if it’s achievable with your variable and fixed costs. Even if it is, you’ll still need to check that the price of the product is competitive in the market.

Image

5. Pick a sales strategy

Your sales strategy will largely be determined by the type of customer you’re targeting. 

Here are some of the most common sales strategies used by both B2C and B2B businesses and their pros and cons:

Direct to Consumer

Pros:

  • Focuses on marketing, which can save you money on sales efforts 
  • Targets consumers directly, giving you a higher chance of conversion with the right messaging

Cons:

  • Requires clever marketing to set you apart from your competitors

Inbound Sales

Pros:

  • Meets the customers at the stage of the buyer’s journey they’re in
  • Builds leads without requiring cold pitching 

Cons:

  • Inbound marketing can take time to produce results

Outbound Sales

Pros:

  • Casts a wide net to capture as many customers as possible 
  • Can lead to fast sales

Cons:

  •  Relies heavily on your sales team’s approach

6. Set up success criteria

If you don’t have success criteria in place before you unveil your product, how will you know if it’s met your expectations?

You don’t have to create elaborate KPIs to monitor product sales, but it’s wise to establish some parameters that you can check in with regularly. For example, you could set a weekly or monthly goal, such as the number of customers buying your product or the percentage of sales brought in through inbound marketing.

When you establish success criteria in this way, you can see exactly what is working and what isn’t. That’s why it’s a good idea to be as specific as possible with various metrics so you can keep an eye on your products’ financial viability and commercial success over time.

7. Produce content

Once your product is close to launch, use your content marketing to build hype around it and create a built-in audience.

Your content strategy is key, as it can extend your product’s lifespan and offer a steady trickle of value to your customers in the form of entertainment or information. 

Every social media post, website article, or video that you put out should make your customers feel as if they’ve spent their time wisely.

Even if the piece of content doesn’t convert interest to sales, it can keep customers on the hook so that they return to your business in future. Include CTAs (call to action) in your landing pages and social media posts over time, and your content will eventually become another source of marketing you can capitalize on.

8. Optimize conversion rates

Putting out content and adopting the right sales strategy will help you land more customers and garner sales, but you could always do better.

When it comes to content, SEO plays a key role in ensuring that it finds the right audience. SEO determines whether or not your web page appears on the first page of Google or the last. If you use SEO best practices when producing content and have an SEO expert audit your web pages, you can drum up more interest and optimize your conversion rates.

Using the KPIs you established in your GTM strategy, assess how your product is doing in various metrics, and use that information to improve where appropriate. If you’re struggling with online sales, for example, a website overhaul could be on the cards. Or perhaps a better user experience would do the trick. 

A project management solution like Wrike can help you plan your go-to-market strategy and monitor your success criteria. Our prebuilt Go-to-Market Plan template allows you to break GTM into phases, assign due dates to tasks, and track progress on a Gantt chart timeline. Try this template now with a free two-week Wrike trial.

Further reading
article

How to Build a Go-To-Market Strategy Remotely

article

What Is Go-To-Market Enablement?

article

What Is a Digital Go-To-Market Strategy?

article

How to Overcome Go-To-Market Challenges