Launching a new product or service without a solid strategy is like running a marathon without planning a route or training to run 26 miles. You might get through it, but along the way, you’ll probably get lost, making the run longer, and you’ll be completely frazzled by the end of it.
If you’re here, you can probably relate. Maybe you launched a B2B product or service, created your brand identity, used a go-to-market strategy template and got crickets. You’re not alone. Many companies feel like their strategy failed. Some didn’t even have a strategy. Write a blog, and customers will flock in, yes?
Now is your chance to dissect your B2B go-to-market strategy and pinpoint your mistakes. This article will guide you through that process and explain how you can fix the mistakes and plug the holes in your marketing efforts, and start your journey to massive growth.
How to fix a Broken B2B Go To Market Strategy
A go-to-market strategy is a well-thought-out and actionable plan to launch a product. An excellent strategy will reach your ideal customers and help you gain a competitive advantage.
Without a plan, you risk launching a product or service that flops. Imagine the weeks, months, or years you’ve put into developing your product or service and failing to penetrate the market or make any sales. What a disaster that would be.
Bringing together the key elements that drive your business (sales, marketing, distribution, brand awareness, competitive analysis) provides the base for a successful strategy and prevents the mistakes that lead to product launch failures.
Lean Labs are a growth partner ready to work with you to build an effective strategy to grow your marketing efforts as your business grows.
1. Your Goals and KPIs are Poorly Defined
If your goals aren’t SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound), you’re running out of the gate blind. Launching a new product or service is always risky, but if you believe in your solution, you need to get it in front of the right people, on the right platforms, and at the correct times.
How can you measure success if you don’t know the metrics you need to care about? Poorly defined goals, objectives, and KPIs (key performance indicators) lead to mediocre marketing and chasing undefined results.
“I want more people to read my emails!” is a poorly defined goal. Let’s look at how we can improve it.
First, let’s revisit what we mean by SMART goals and KPIs.
- SMART = Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Time-Bound
- KPIs = Key Performance Indicators
Now let's use the poorly defined goal, “I want more people to read my emails!” as an example for setting smart goals and KPIs. Of course, we all want better open rates! But how do you define success with no results to look for?
“Our email marketing goal is to increase open rates by 10% in one month by split testing headlines.”
It’s specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound.
How can this be applied to your go-to-market strategy?
Conversion goals are the north star of any marketing strategy. They help you determine whether you’re reaching your target audience, the distribution channels to use, and judge whether your content is successful.
Set SMART goals around awareness, acquisition, activation, revenue, retention, and referrals. We dig deeper into the six levers of growth in What Is Growth Marketing? 3 Reasons You Can't Afford Not to Know.
2. Your Value Proposition Isn’t Clearly Defined
Why should your target audience buy from you? Can you answer that question straight away without thinking about it?
When people visit your website, they should know what your unique value proposition is within a few seconds. Attention spans are short, and visitors won’t stay on your site without a clearly defined value proposition.
A value proposition isn’t a slogan. It’s not taking a position, and it’s not about your product. If all you talk about is your product, why it’s the best, and its features, your prospects won’t care because you don’t explain whether it will help them solve a problem.
In a nutshell, a value proposition is a promise. It clearly defines the problems you solve and the value you provide. It highlights how you are different from your competitors.
Your website should be your best salesman. If it doesn’t say the right thing at the right time, you’ll lose sales. We recommend putting your value proposition as the main headline of your website, just like we do at Lean Labs.
For a great value proposition, consider the following:
- Don’t make it about you, your company, or your product. Instead, communicate how you solve a problem.
- Keep it short and straightforward. The shorter, the better. It should be easy to read and understand.
- Make sure it explains what you will do for your clients. What will they accomplish with you? What need do you fulfill?
- Lastly, it should align with your primary call to action. An incredible value proposition and compelling CTA are a winning combination.
3. You Didn’t Create Buyer Personas
Without a clear picture of your ideal customer, how can you market specifically to them?
You won’t know:
- Where your customers hang out
- Where they go to get help
- Their problems and how they phrase them in Google
- How they prefer to receive information
- Where they are in their buyer journey
You will waste time and resources trying to reach anybody with your product or service when you should be trying to reach a specific somebody.
Map out your buyer persona(s). Three to five is enough. Some companies only need one or two! Once you know your ideal customer, you can tailor your marketing strategy to speak to them. It’s incredibly powerful to know who you’re attempting to reach and start to build a journey that they’ll go on with you.
You’ll get to know and understand your customer’s challenges and pain points and begin to personalize your messaging.
Your buyer personas should inform your B2B go-to-market strategy.
When you’re launching a new product, your buyer persona might be purely fictional. But you’ll base them on real people and solve problems they already have. If you know what they’re searching for on Google, your content will answer their questions and empathize with their challenges.
4. You Didn’t Define Role and Responsibilities
Is your growth team aligned?
If your team doesn’t know who is supposed to be doing what and what the timelines are, it’s a recipe for disaster. A successful go-to-market strategy needs careful planning and delegation.
If you’re a startup, you probably have a small team. Do team members have the skills to execute the strategy component you’ve assigned to them? Would they be better suited to a different role?
These are all questions to ask before you execute.
Clearly define who is responsible for each part of your strategy. With team buy-in and clearly defined goals, objectives, and metrics, you can confidently implement a go-to-market strategy.
You have to ensure that every team member knows exactly what’s expected of them and the goals they’re trying to hit. To do this, identify skills and assign tasks appropriately.
It’s crucial here to consider your entire team. Yes, the marketing department will develop the strategy, but other departments should be involved.
In the sales process: Train the sales team and arm them with enough knowledge to sell your product or service. Give them the tools and resources to engage and delight prospects with demos and educational content. You might sit in on sales calls to listen out for any FAQs and blockers.
Your support team should know how to use your CRM to build and manage relationships with customers. They should know the onboarding process for helping users get set up and how to use your product or service. Finally, how do they measure customer satisfaction and success?
With clearly defined goals, objectives, and proper delegation, your team will be aligned and ready to tackle a product launch.
Implement a Successful B2B Go To Market Strategy for Growth
The adage fail to plan, plan to fail rings true with go-to-market strategies. Use your time wisely before going to market. Don’t rush. The same goes for once you’ve launched. Give your strategy enough time to work.
If you genuinely know your metrics and have set SMART goals, you’ll know what’s working and what isn’t. Don’t make rash decisions. There are no emergencies in marketing.
Go-to-market strategies should be continually reviewed and adapted.
If you’re struggling with your go-to-market strategy or even your overall marketing efforts, Lean Labs helps deserving SaaS and Tech Brands acquire customers through effective marketing and sales systems.
To identify friction in your process, use our Growth Grader tool to measure and track the Six Levers of Growth and monitor the health of your buyer journey.