Discover the reasons why your business should use the Go-To-Market Strategy secrets today. Do you need more than one? Profit. It’s scary good. Boom.

Show me the numbers!

This year, 472 million entrepreneurs worldwide attempted to start 305 million companies, and approximately 100 million new businesses (or one third) will open each year around the world.

That means 274,000 businesses open every day. At the same time, 239,000 business close every day.

Can you see how that number of businesses competing for that scarce resource called “capital” might be a problem?

Let’s drill down even further and focus on one piece of this overall pie. The Fintech Sector.

It’s estimated that 100,000 technology startups reach the basic funding stage every year. Angel investors (including friends and family members) help about half of these companies with their initial development. Fewer than 10% (about 4,000) are then able to show enough promise to actually receive a first round of capital from venture or private equity sources.

If you are an entrepreneurial manager who has reached this milestone, it’s a major achievement — your technology has progressed from an interesting concept to a promising commercial opportunity. You’ve probably demonstrated your product’s potential with a subset of customers and now experienced investors are willing to place a bet on you.

The challenge becomes how to sell your product and create a sustainable revenue stream so that you can further develop your product offerings, build your infrastructure, repay your investors, and pay yourself. Unfortunately, many tech startups get stuck at this stage because they can’t quite figure out a scalable way to go to market. Often, this is because they’ve been founded by technologists, and sales is not an area of expertise. Or perhaps it’s because the only person who is passionate enough to sell the product is the person who developed it. Or people may believe their invention is good enough to sell itself. The consequence is that sales don’t become a focus of attention until the cash starts to burn.

Figuring out a go-to-market approach is no trivial exercise — it separates the companies that will be successful and sustainable from those that won’t. In our work with startups over the last several years, we’ve heard dozens of questions related to how to start thinking about sales: Should we put together a direct sales force or sell indirectly through others? If we sell directly, should we organize salespeople by market, industry, geography, company size, or some other principle? Will our salespeople require technical support and work in teams? Should we bundle maintenance and other services into our sales approach, or sell them separately? Can we get our product to market through other channels, such as social media or advertising? What about pricing? The list goes on.

The problem is that these are fundamentally the wrong questions to begin with. They all focus on the perspective of the startup and the technology, but startups need to take their customers’ perspective to understand how to approach the market. They should think about what the customers are trying to achieve and what problems they need to solve — and then think about how the product can help them be successful.

For example, earlier this year a five-year-old software company asked us to help its sales team do a better job of selling to large enterprise organizations. The company was already breaking even operationally after two rounds of funding. But despite some successes in pilot projects, the salespeople had not been able to expand their deals from “interesting trials” into ongoing revenue streams.

After talking with the VP of sales, the CEO, and several of the account managers, we realized we had heard a lot about the software’s virtues but much less about the customer problems and pain points that the software was meant to address. Eventually, we asked this team to focus on three large enterprises and to describe the business challenges these potential customers were facing. Once they developed this context, the salespeople were able to identify a number of very large opportunities where their software could help.

For instance, they learned that one strategic objective of the customer was growing its data centre hardware business. They then saw that their software, which could help data centres reduce operational costs, could be incorporated into the customer’s equipment just like word processing software is embedded into personal computers. This led them to see that one way to bring their product to market was to partner with this customer (and others like it) instead of selling directly to data centres. In this way, their “customer” could actually be an important part of the go-to-market strategy.

Veteran salespeople might recognize this “consultative selling” approach and dismiss it as old hat. The point, however, is that the consultative selling mindset needs to start before the go-to-market approach is developed, and it must evolve as the sales strategy evolves. Figuring out how you go to market is not a one-time exercise for a new company; it should be an ongoing process, constantly informed by a deeper and deeper understanding of customer needs and how your product can meet them.

If you are part of a startup or a relatively new company that needs to accelerate revenue growth, consider how this approach might apply to you. Start by identifying a small number of very specific customers — either company (if you are a B2B player) or desired consumer segments (e.g., urban professionals with specific characteristics). Then put yourself in the shoes of these customers by thinking about their issues and by talking to them not about your product but about their challenges and pain points. (Startup expert Steve Blank, for example, suggests that you talk to dozens of potential users as part of a “customer development” process.)

Once you’ve taken these steps, you can begin to experiment with a go-to-market approach with the expectation that you’ll continue to refine and change it based on experience and further insights.

Figuring out an approach for going to market is one of the toughest things for a startup to do. But without understanding the customer’s issues, it’s almost impossible to get right.

What are the major components of a go-to-market strategy?

Some answer “what is your go-to-market?” by talking only about their marketing but go-to-market is a strategy that extends across the organisation.

To get a feel for the major parts of a GTM strategy, I’ve summarised the GTM plan of a serial entrepreneur, Stefan Groschupf, taken from this great blog post.

I’ve slightly shifted around the order as point 1 should, in theory, be after point 2 but it makes first-timer logical sense this way.

Craft a value matrix and messaging around the pain point

This is a good way to understand what the pain point is and how to set up messaging to address the pain point.

Identify the buying personas involved in the journey

At DMO we realised, by analysing sign-ups, that the person who first signs up or enquires about the product is often a manager and not an end-user as we imagined. Yeah, this was a surprise.

Also, we found that the gatekeeper we needed to clear is often someone in charge of data security, so we created additional detailed docs explaining how we secure data.

There are a number of people involved in the stages of making a purchase including:

  • The initiator who first comes across your product.
  • The user.
  • The influencer.
  • The decision-maker.
  • The buyer who approves the budget.
  • Final approver.
  • Gatekeeper – such as the IT dept in charge of data security of vendors

Understanding these people and what each one needs during the process helps create the right content and processes you’ll need to make the sale.

Understand your buyer’s journey

In short, figure out your top of the funnel, middle of the funnel and bottom of the funnel so you know what docs are needed at each stage.

DMO’s top of the funnel is the blog and integration listings which leads to the home page containing videos and testimonials to get attention.

DMO’s middle of the funnel is live chat and demos to answer key questions.

DMO bottom of the funnel is the trial, educational emails, one to one product walk-throughs and pricing quotes to get to a sale.

Choose a marketing strategy

This is where you figure out your inbound and outbound strategies.

For DMO, it’s primarily about content.

We started with email and then realised we did not have the messaging and target market nailed so went to content until we knew more.

You might use only one or a mix of self-service where they enter credit card and buy, inside sales, heavy-duty field sales or a channel model.

At DMO we started as a self-service product and then added inside sales because larger companies need to build layers of trust in you and the product, especially if they are in the finance sector.

If you need some inspiration or don’t have a template to start gathering the information together to create a Go-To-Market plan, download this free word file.

If you want a second opinion about the need to use a Go-To-Market Plan I’ll give you 15 minutes of my time for free to conduct a quick Q&A session.

Make a booking in my online calendar here.

If you’d like to be sent Monthly Marketing Trends and News Updates by email, complete the subscription form below and submit it, and you’ll be accepted into our Monthly Newsletter group. We’re giving away a FREE E-BOOK titled “INFLUENCER MARKETING REPORT”,  to everyone who joins our Monthly Newsletter list this month.

Just complete the form on the Free Resources page to access your pdf file download.

If you’re looking to enhance your customer-centric capability, we have some exclusive offers for products that the likes of Amazon, and Zappos. I wrote a blog on this subject which you can read here.

You are going to need to create more and better content that your customers want. The more value you offer them, the more they’ll feel like they have found a home. On the content marketing side, I use and recommend Semrush.

Once you have created some content, the easiest way to use that content is to have an App that curates and posts that material at different times, i.e. set it up once then let it run. I use and recommend Missinglettr.

Email Marketing will grow your business faster than any other marketing medium!  I use and recommend GetResponse.

Wishing you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy, Healthy and Prosperous 2020!

Yours truly,
James (Jim) Spurway
“When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change”

6 Helpful Tools to Promote Blog Posts in 2020

These tools will boost your postings in the social news feeds of Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest etc.

Blog Content Distribution

Over the last few years, the average engagement rate of social media posts declined dramatically, especially on Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin. This resulted in a dramatic loss of traffic to bloggers and content marketers.

The following tools will help you to more effectively distribute your content, cut through the noise and increase the exposure of your content in social media feeds.

“Content is fire, social media is gasoline.”

– Jay Baer, New York Times best-selling author.

Peer Promotion on Linkedin with Lempod

Benefit: Find existing groups of people (pods) who are ready to support your content with likes and comments on LinkedIn. Comments within the first hour of your posting are most important!

How: Apply to join a pod that corresponds with the type of content you post. Once you’re accepted, all the members of the pod will auto-like and comment on your LinkedIn postings. On average you’ll get a 5 to 10x boost in views.

Supported: Only Linkedin (Personal profiles and company pages)

Cost: Each group (pod) you join costs USD 5 / month.

Lempod reviews by others 123

Tap into new audiences with Quuu

Benefit: Real people and businesses share your content on their social media profiles, allowing you to tap into new audiences that were previously beyond your reach.

Bonus: The people sharing your content will have followers already interested in similar and relevant topics. No bots, all real people.

Supported: Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

Costs: Once a piece of content (e.g. a blog post) is $40 per month.

Automate evergreen content promotion with Missinglettr

Benefit: Schedule a year’s worth of engaging content within minutes and regularly drive traffic back to your blog, with zero ad-spend.

How: Once you publish a blog post, Missinglettr analyzes the content and automatically formulates a series of social media posts pre-filled with quotes, hashtags, and images.

Supported: Facebook pages, LinkedIn (Personal profiles and company pages) and twitter

Costs: After the free 30-day trial, plans start at $15 per month.

Get more shares with Triberr

Benefit: This tool enables you to get more shares on their content by helping each other out. Be part of a smart, savvy and talented group of content producers, be part of a tribe.

How: Import your content into your tribal stream and they’ll start sharing it to their own audiences. Connect your own social network accounts and you can return the favour and share theirs too. Can’t find your tribe in the 60,000 to choose from? Make your own centred around your topic of interest and get going.

Cost: Completely free, for the basic plan.

Boost Your LinkedIn Reach with Captain Linked

Benefit: Boost the reach of your LinkedIn posts by automating engagement.

How: Captian Linked replicates what many companies do manually via their internal slack or telegram channels: Orchestrate social media actions of individuals to drive wider audience reach.

Recommendation: You get the most out of the free version if you reach out to people in your network and ask them to install Captain Linked and follow you.

Supported: Only LinkedIn (Personal profiles and company pages).

Cost: Free plan for individuals.

Reciprocal sharing with Viral Content Bee

Benefit: Viral Content Bee is a reciprocal sharing community. Quite similar to Triberr. Viral Content Bee is helping users to promote their content to their target audience.

How: To participate, all you have to do is share some content from other members and in return, they’ll share the work you’ve produced.

Supported: Twitter, Tumblr, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Mix

Cost: Free, for the basic plan.

As someone who blogs regularly, I constantly find that I’m either not dedicating enough time to promoting my blog posts across my social media channels, or I just forget entirely!

I’ve been using an awesome tool recently (called Missinglettr) that pretty much takes care of all of that for me.

Now, whenever I publish a blog post, I get sent an email (within minutes of me hitting ‘publish’) inviting me to review a full 12-month social marketing campaign for the blog post I just published. All I need to do is review their suggestions (making edits if I need to) and that’s it. My blog post is then marketed across my social channels for the next year – driving traffic back to my site.

I use and recommend Missinglettr.  Quite simply… I love it!

Full disclosure: I am already an affiliate of Missinglettr so if you chose to become a customer of them, I would receive an affiliate commission.

If you want a second opinion about the need to use some kind of content curating and distribution programme I’ll give you 15 minutes of my time for free to conduct a quick Q&A session.

Make a booking in my online calendar here.

If you’d like to be sent Monthly Marketing Trends and News Updates by email, complete the subscription form below and submit it, and you’ll be accepted into our Monthly Newsletter group. We’re giving away a FREE E-BOOK titled “INFLUENCER MARKETING REPORT” to everyone who joins our Monthly Newsletter list right now.

Just complete the form on the Free Resources page to access your pdf file download.

If you’re looking to enhance your customer-centric capability, we have some exclusive offers for products that the likes of Amazon, and Zappos.

I wrote a blog about this subject which you can read here.

Yours truly,
James (Jim) Spurway
“When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change”