Go-To-Market Strategy for Startups
If you work in a fresh-faced startup, you’ll have to contend with several challenges as you prepare for your first product launch. Even if you’ve managed to assemble a crack team of budding entrepreneurs and marketing experts, getting your product into the hands of customers won’t be easy.
For a start, unlike companies with longstanding reputations for delivering on customer expectations, you’ll have nothing to show for your promises at first. When considering how to go to market for startups, there’s that extra degree of difficulty. You’ll have to work hard and smart to convince prospects that you have the product they want and need.
How to pull off a successful product launch as a startup
First, you need a plan. Then, you have to execute it to the best of your ability, using all the resources you can muster.
There are several GTM tactics to bear in mind when creating a go-to-market strategy for startups, which we’ll go over in this section.
Do your research
While you may be coming to the market with fresh ideas and energy, you’ll still need to do research before executing your GTM strategy for startups.
Every decision you make from now until you unveil your product should be backed by real data and thorough research. This gives you the greatest chance of understanding what customers are looking for.
With any startup’s go-to-market strategy, there’s a need to be proactive. Rather than muse about what your customers might want, reach out and solicit feedback. You can use this feedback to drive product development and influence your marketing strategy.
One of the best ways to contact new prospects is through email outreach or questionnaires, as you can cold pitch your product idea along with a series of questions. With your questions, the goal is to figure out what the customer is looking for in a product and envisage your ideal buyer persona.
Here are some ideas of questions you might like to ask prospects, using the example of project management software:
- What is your profession?
- What do you do in your free time?
- What do you look for in project management software?
- Do you have any gripes with your current project management solution?
Work on your marketing strategy
Once you have information about your ideal buyer persona, you can create your marketing strategy.
GTM startup logic dictates that the best way to start this process is to determine which marketing channels to focus your energy on.
To establish an online presence and start to build authority as a brand, it’s worth setting up on various social media platforms from day one. You may not have much to post about initially, but your social media strategy can go hand-in-hand with your content marketing, which can yield results over time.
The sooner you start to develop your online voice, the better. If you can enter the market with a built-in social media following, even if it’s just a few hundred people, then you’ll have successfully generated interest in the product launch.
Content is king in the digital age, so you’d do well to formulate a content strategy that focuses on various stages of the buyer’s journey.
It could be that one week you put out a blog post on common pain points in your industry, and the next, you write about the features of your product that address these problems. Even if the content doesn’t compel prospects to take action in the beginning, you can establish yourself as an authority over time and climb search engine rankings for greater visibility.
Who knows, you may strike lucky and have a post go viral one day.
Define metrics for success
Once your research is done and your marketing strategy is underway, you should take some time to define some metrics for success. Consider tracking the following key performance indicators (KPIs):
Website traffic will let you know whether your marketing efforts bring in prospects to your pages.
If you notice that you aren’t hitting high numbers, it could be that you’re due an SEO audit for your web pages to boost organic traffic. It could also be worth your while to invest in paid ads.
Sales figures by channel
Sales figures are important to track, and if you can do so by channel, they will be much easier to act upon. If you notice that sales are slow over the course of a week or month, you can either proactively reduce prices or survey customers to see if there’s an issue with the product.
Lead conversion rate
How often you convert leads into paying customers will tell you a lot about the success of your sales funnel. Take the number of converted leads and divide that by how many leads you started with to calculate the percentage figure.
To convert more leads, you can improve the call to action (CTA) statements on your web pages and social media posts, address key customer concerns, or optimize your system for generating quality leads.
Follow these tips for building a startup GTM strategy, and you can’t go too far wrong. The main takeaway here is that data should drive your decision-making at every step of the way.