A lot of business writers get stuck into using the term “marketing” to describe everything, including go-to-market strategies. This can be confusing because there are some that use it in the sense of advertising and marketing, but this isn’t the most common usage.
The classic definition of marketing is creating or shaping public perception of your product or service through communication, influence, and promotion. In other words, it’s about spreading positive perceptions of what you offer so people will want to buy it.
This is typically broken down into three main areas: media, advertisement, and promotional. Each one works by influencing how others perceive your company, products, and services.
A good marketer uses these tools to promote their product, not only for themselves, but also for the benefit of their company. Businesses with solid go-to-market strategies have effective ways to spread their message across all types of channels.
There may come a time when companies need to shift their focus to developing more fundamental marketing skills, though. Why? Because going up against brands with strong internal marketing systems can pose a challenge!
Many large corporations have internalized the value of marketing as an important part of their businesses. They might even have separate departments like marketing, advertisements, or sales promotions to handle different aspects of it.
For smaller business owners or entrepreneurs looking to start theirs, however, internalizing marketing still feels like an uphill battle.
There is a lot of confusion about what constitutes a “go- to- market” or GTM strategy, and what does not. This article will clear up that confusion by defining both terms and highlighting the differences between them.
First, let’s look at the definition of GTM according to Merriam Webster:
GTM = going to market OR launch campaign
So, one way to define this term is as the process of launching a product or service. A more accurate version of the above definition would be “launching a product or service” because you can also have a re-launch or relaunch (reintroducing an existing product or promoting an item with new features).
A marketing strategy is usually described as an outbound tactic, or activity that involves creating a message and channeling it to potential customers.
Some examples of marketed strategies include advertising, direct mail, website content, social media campaigns, promotional giveaways, etc. All of these activities are designed to grab someone’s attention and create a positive impression of your product or service.
After this initial exposure, they aim to draw in new clients by promoting your product or service. These promotions can be for products you sell, or services you provide.
A good marketer will always keep looking into more effective ways to promote their company. This keeps them up-to-date on current trends and techniques.
A go-to-market (GTM) strategy is typically described as the strategies that companies use to market their product or service. This can include creating marketing materials, finding influencers to promote your product, developing advertisements, etc.
A GTM strategy usually focuses on getting people to interact with your products or services by offering incentives or promotions. For example, if you sell running shoes, you would advertise more about how great your shoes are through advertising channels such as billboards, magazines, and websites.
A marketing strategy is usually one of three things: brand development, go-to-market strategies, or channel switching. Channel switching is mostly focused on finding new ways to get your product in front of as many people as possible. For example, changing what channels you advertise on, promoting through social media, creating online stores, etc.
Brand development is typically spent on developing strong brands that stick with your products. This can be done through altering your company logo, redesigning your website and introducing new features, etc.
Go-to-market strategies are all about executing on specific campaigns. These could be direct mail pieces, advertisements, sponsored events, etc.
When it comes down to it, the most important thing is to determine if there’s an urgent need for your product before investing in a longer term strategy. If there isn’t, then investing in either a marketing strategy or go-to-market strategy may not make sense.
Sometimes, instead of having a marketing strategy, you will be asked to develop a “go-to-market” or advertising strategy. A go-to-market strategy is when your company does not have an overall marketing plan, but it does have one component that is functioning well.
This could be because your department has enough budgeted time and resources to launch its own separate campaign, or because they know what strategies work for your brand and are developing their own.
Alternatively, a go-to-market strategy can be using a different medium to promote your product or service (for example, spending money on social media ads rather than producing some content yourself).
Beyond having a mission, creating a messaging framework, defining target audiences and determining budget all contribute to developing your overall marketing strategy. These are not discrete steps but rather part of an ongoing process that shifts as your business changes and grows.
Your marketing strategy is what guides how you market your company and products. It can be modified or adjusted over time depending on what works for you and yours at any given moment in time.
You will need to revisit this article later to add onto these tips. Keep reading!
What is the difference between a go-to-market (GTM) strategy and marketing strategy? A GTM strategy focuses more on where you position yourself in relation to other companies in your field, while a marketing strategy looks at how you communicate with and reach out to potential customers.
This includes deciding if you do direct sales, affiliate marketing, public relations, etc. Yours may also include finding new ways to convey your message and develop relationships with others working in your area of expertise.
Some businesses have separate departments assigned to different aspects of their marketing, which makes it even easier to reevaluate and change around when needed.
While developing your marketing strategy, you should also be thinking about what strategies will work best for your company’s go-to-market (GTM) strategy. Your GTM strategy is how your business markets to potential customers, while your marketing strategy focuses more on how to get people to know and trust your products and services.
Your marketing strategy can include things like advertising, website design, social media pages, etc. But unless those efforts are backed up by an effective GTM strategy, you may not see the results that you want.
That’s why it’s so important to think about both of these areas together. You need to have a plan in place for getting new patients into your practice or making current ones feel valued and respected.
You can’t just focus only one area of your business – marketing or GTM – because each play a key role in shaping your business’s success.
A lot of businesses get stuck in what I refer to as the go-to-market (GTM) stage. They spend most of their time thinking about how they can market their product or service through traditional means, like advertisements or direct mail campaigns.
They forget that even more effective ways to reach out to potential customers are by creating an online presence and engaging with others via social media.
In fact, according OfficeMax’s 2016 State of Inbound Survey, nearly half of all respondents said that promoting their products via blogs and/or web pages was one of their top three strategies for increasing website traffic.
By adding some spark to your business’s digital image, you will draw new visitors, increase consumer awareness of your company, and strengthen your brand identity.
At the same time, developing your expertise in other areas such as SEO (search engine optimization), social media, influencer marketing, and content marketing is integral parts of GTM strategies.