Ask any startup founder if they have a go-to-market (GTM) problem, and you might be surprised to hear that many would say no. This is because GTM is often seen as a marketing, sales, or product problem, rather than a holistic strategy. However, neglecting your GTM strategy can lead to wasted resources and unsold products. On the other hand, a well-defined GTM strategy can help target the right audience and improve efficiency within the organization.
GTM frameworks have evolved over time, with a shift towards a more laser-focused approach. Companies now define their strategies based on the serviceable obtainable market (SOM) rather than just the total addressable market (TAM). This means focusing on a specific set of ideal customer profiles (ICPs) to effectively reach the target market.
Founders are taking a more hands-on approach to GTM, leveraging various strategies such as sales-led and account-based marketing (ABM) to drive growth. Additionally, companies are incorporating product-led growth (PLG), marketing-led development, and community-led approaches into their GTM strategies.
Community-led marketing has become increasingly important, as traditional marketing channels are becoming less effective. Engaging with online communities and providing valuable information can lead to increased brand awareness and more sales.
GTM strategies should be tailored to the different stages of a company’s growth. From the idea stage to the scale-up stage, the focus and tactics of the GTM strategy will change. It’s important to remain consistent within each stage for effective growth.
Introducing the EPIC GTM model, which aligns a company’s four critical pillars: ecosystem or sales-driven effort (E), product-led growth (P), inbound and outbound demand generation (I), and community-led engagement (C). This framework helps align the company’s efforts and storytelling to attract leads, accelerate opportunities, and build community word-of-mouth.
The sales team plays a crucial role in the ecosystem and account-based marketing (ABM) pillar. They determine the ideal customer profiles (ICPs) and engage external partners to influence decision-making. Superstar salespeople are no longer sufficient; they need to adapt and react to meet their quotas.
In conclusion, a well-defined and evolving GTM strategy is essential for startups to succeed. By understanding the shifts in GTM frameworks and adapting to the changing market, companies can effectively target their audience and drive growth.