Our 9-Point GTM Framework
Our 9-step process for commercializing a new product or innovation is designed to help founders secure a spot among the 5% that succeeds. It is also a proven method for achieving market leadership or sustaining revenue growth with an existing product.
Read on if you are a founder or CEO looking for ways to achieve mainstream market adoption before your product or company fails.
1. Analyze the Target Market
Market segmentation is the process of defining the group or groups of customers who share similar needs and buying behaviors, and are more likely than others to adopt your solution. The starting point of any strategic endeavor is to select and describe an identifiable economic group of buyers that will be your initial target market or segment. If there are closely-related groups of buyers, it is essential to decide which one to focus on first.
2. Develop a Customer Profile
Once you have assessed and prioritized the market opportunities, the next step is to describe the characteristics of the identifiable economic group of potential customers within that top growth opportunity. Ensure that the target customer has a compelling reason to buy the new product as soon as possible and describe the specific motivation that will make your product valuable to them.
3. Define the Complete Solution
This step in go-to-market strategy includes determining what makes the product “complete and compelling” in the eyes of your initial target customer. The complete solution is the set of products and services the target audience requires to overcome their fear of adoption and resistance to change. Your core product/technology must be augmented with a variety of services, intangible attributes, and ancillary products to become complete.
4. Identify Potential Partners
It is rare for a single organization to deliver every element of a complete solution. And today’s fiercely-competitive and fast-changing markets require the development of partnerships to reduce time to market and to deliver all of the elements of a complete solution. In most cases it will be necessary to form partnerships with technology, product and service providers to accelerate the delivery of a complete solution for the target customer and market.
5. Select Distribution Channels
An effective go-to-market strategy describes how a company communicates with and reaches its customer segment to deliver a value proposition. Identify and prepare the best distribution channels to drive awareness throughout the market and sell the complete solution. This step could somehow overlap with the last one in the sense that you may have identified channel partners. The key to identifying the best sales channel is to evaluate their willingness and ability to sell and deliver your complete solution.
6. Determine Pricing Strategy
People in the mainstream do not spend money as freely as early adopters. And, at the same time, the sales channel needs to be rewarded appropriately for selling to your target customer. Also, the suppliers, the partners, and the sales channel need to be rewarded appropriately for selling to the target customer. Your pricing strategy needs to reflect these requirements. Help your customer perceive the high value of your product and pay what it’s worth.
7. Analyze Your Competitors
Analyzing your competitors, both current and potential, is a critical step in order to clearly understand your long-term competitive advantages and differentiators. Assess the competitive market and identify the “most dangerous” competitive solution. Analyze their capabilities and look for ways (in addition to trademarks and patents) to develop and maintain a competitive advantage.
8. Create Unique Positioning
Proper positioning allows your company to be seen as a credible provider of products and services to the target market. Always remember that you don’t position your product, the market does. And the best way to help the market understand your product is to develop a comprehensive positioning “platform” that articulates the value delivered by your key differentiators. Once a positioning platform has been developed, the market infrastructure must be educated using the market relations process.
9. Select the Next Target
Identify an adjacent niche market that extends the progress you make in your initial market segment. This must be a second group of highly-motivated buyers, who reference each other before making a buying decision, and their application need fits with your technology/solution.