How to Bring an Idea to Market?
Go To Market Programs are designed specifically for your company, product, service or brand. Bringing your ideas to market require industry experience, a tight budget control and a constant timeline supervision.
If your goal is to launch a new startup, need proof of concept or simply want to get to market effectively (without breaking the bank) you may be in need of a Marketing Agency.
Capable of designing custom Go-to-Market Pilot Programs, agencies employ Digital Professionals and Account Managers to develop a strategy, stand up your product or service online, and help you translate your vision into a real business with results.
All for a lot less than you probably think. Give us a holler – we’d love to hear about your idea.
Pilot Programs create a lasting first impression and drive your prospects awareness to interact with your product or company. A team of experienced digital strategists can work with you and your team to gauge your market, your competitors and your product or service before suggesting the digital channels and methods to marketing them.
This research and preparation helps to ensure that you are introducing your new idea through to the right audience, at the right time and with the most effective use of your marketing spend. A good “Partner team” will also help identify the potential roadblocks, unrealized opportunities, set important deadlines and milestones.
Preparation and processes cover the following critical planning and strategic considerations to help you and your company prepare for success:
- Systems and Processes Assessment
- Competitive Landscape Assessment
- Risks and Roadblocks
- Internal and External Resource Assessments
- Team Alignment and Accountability
- Multi-channel Marketing Assessment
- Key Pilot Milestones, Deadlines
- Estimated Outcomes & Predictability Factors
- Work-Flow Management & Planning
- Critical Data Elements & Reporting
- Infrastructure Assessment
Marketing for your new product
When launching a new product or service, enter a new market, or doing both, having an excellent marketing plan is crucial for your success.
A good go-to-market plan should be composed of five main layers:
1 – the product strategy
2 – the promotion strategy
3 – the channel strategy
4 – the marketing strategy
5 – the customer experience strategy
Before we get into each one of those layers, let’s go over some preliminary remarks
When Will You Need A Go-To-Market Plan?
- You are entering a new market – when you are expanding your offer – a product or service to a new market
- You develop or create a new product – when you are launching a new product in an existing market
- You diversify your current products or line of products – you launch an existing product in a different market; this is a risky endeavor for many companies, as there are many unknowns you need to consider; the new market may be unprepared for your product, you must understand your new audience and check whether the product or service you are offering will be accepted.
Understanding your customers
Thousands upon thousands of products are launched every day. Unfortunately, thousands of products fail every day. The reasons are multiple: “the market wasn’t ready”, “the product was too expensive”, “the demand was simply not there” or “the product doesn’t solve an important problem”. A good go-to-market plan can help you avoid these common problems and make your product a winner in the market. Here’s how a go-to-market plan helps:
- New market research – you’ll get information about the audience’s interest in your product; customer development is also done during this phase;
- Market trend research – will determine whether the company enters a viable market and how saturated it is;
- Coordinated product development – you’ll be able to understand the product better by bringing other product managers in the research and testing phases;
- Target customer personas – create a primary profile of your early adopters; you’ll be able to learn why people buy your product, what they use it for and why they would choose it over a competitor’s product.
Here are some questions you should use to understand your customers and their interest in the new product:
- Do your customers need this particular product?
- Does it solve a particular problem?
- How much are customers willing to pay for the product?
- What types of products are available on the market in the same niche? Are these products successful? Can they be improved?
- Why would a customer buy this product over a competitor’s?
- Is the competition successful in this niche? Are their products popular among consumers? What is their current performance?
The closest you get to your customers and the more feedback you get, the more likely it is that your new product will be a success.
Setting strategic objectives
Here are some important goals you should include in your go-to-market plan:
- Product brand awareness – a product that is easily recognized sells better and attracts new customers; to make a product easily recognizable, you will need to determine which channels will drive engagement and what type of traffic you need to attract;
- Marketing to leads – leads are qualified people who will be interested in the product or service you offer; your go-to-market plan should outline the ways to market to potential buyers; the market base for the product must be properly identified before the launch;
- Sales targets – this is the segment of the qualified potential prospects who actually buy the product or service;
- Product adoption – also known as the user scale; you should aim for a high adoption rate, which directly translates into higher sales and increased revenue;
- Customer satisfaction – otherwise known as defect levels; your goal should be to decrease the number of defects and dissatisfaction at launch and post-launch.
The product-problem fit
An important part of your go-to-market plan is the product-problem fit. This refers to your customers’ problems and how your product addresses them (and solves them).
Here’s what you should focus on:
- Define the problem – your customers don’t know about possible solutions or fixes to their problems; they just know what their pains are; to solve a customer’s problem, you have to think out of the box and be creative; a good idea is to ask people about their problems and how they affect their lives; ask whether there are any other problems they face with similar products; make sure to interview multiple target users or customers – this helps you establish problem-solving patterns; keep in mind that some people are not open about their problems, so you have to dig deeper and determine the underlying problems they face;
- The urgency of the problem – not all problems are the same; ask your customers how critical this problem is to them; do they care whether this problem remains unsolved? Do they really need a fix to this problem? Are they looking for a solution to the problem? Will your product be able to solve the problem?
- The size of the problem – how deep the problem runs is also important for your go-to-market plan; try to collect quantitative data where you determine how the target market feels about the problem; look for patterns – is the problem deep? Are there multiple people who are feeling the same about it?
- The willingness to pay – this is a critical part of your go-to-market plan; is your target market willing to pay for the solution to the problem? If the target market considers the problem as urgent and deep, there’s a high chance that people are willing to pay for your product.
Segmenting the market
A good marketing slogan works for a large chunk of the market, but it won’t work for everyone. The message will resonate with a segment of your audience, but some people will want something else. This is normal – people have different interests, needs, and values, so they respond differently to marketing messages. Segmentation is an essential technique in marketing. It divides the audience to reflect their specific characteristics that can influence the buying decisions. Segmentation divides the audience based on their needs, values, interests, and behavioral characteristics. Strategies are implemented based on these factors, in order to improve the marketing plan. Here are some of the most important factors to include in your go-to-market plan:
- Demographic factors – gender, age, income, religion, education, occupation, and marital status;
- Location factors – urban, suburban or rural area;
- Behavioral characteristics – how important is their behavior towards a particular problem; also consider the niche your business is active in;
- Psychographic considerations – make sure to include values, attitudes, interests, activities, hobbies, the benefits sought by the person, and so on.
After you successfully identified the market segments you should focus on, it’s time to probe into them deeper. Try to prioritize the most important segments. Also, determine how you can communicate better with each segment and understand their interests or attitude. Here’s what you should focus on:
- Prioritize – start with the segment whose behavior seems easiest to change or adapt to your needs; this will help you make a quicker impact; a good idea is to follow the technology adoption curve philosophy;
- Level of business impact – pay attention to the size of each segment of the audience and adapt your strategy accordingly;
- Ease of reach – target the segment that is easier to reach, or responds quickly to your questions; take into consideration your existing resources and see what works better for you.
Determine your competitive advantage
To make sure your product has a competitive advantage in the new market, you’ll have to create a competitor profile. Gather as much data as you can in order to create a comprehensive profile. Try to include:
- Recorded data – this data can be obtained externally, from public sources; this includes your competitor’s marketing brochures, news articles, press releases, annual reports, and various reports.
- Witness or observed data – this is the information you gather when visiting your competitor’s booth at a trade show, their presentation at a conference, or the conversations you find on social media about their new products or services;
- Focus on your ability to find new information – expand your opportunities to find more about information about your competitors; conduct interviews in your niche, have discussions with business partners, contractors, or previous clients; contact suppliers or people who worked with your competitor.
Once you collected the data, try to understand how other entities will compete in the market. Here are Porter’s five forces that will help you determine this:
- Barriers to entry – these factors can prevent you or someone else from entering this market easily; for instance, high startup costs can stop you from entering a niche.
- The threat of substitutes – this is very problematic if the substitute already exists, and it’s cheaper; for instance, many people prefer to use margarine instead of butter.
- Supplier bargaining power – price sensitivity and income levels can be problematic.
- Competitive rivalry – these are the tactics and strategies employed by the competition to capture the attention of the audience; the competition is constantly trying to attract your audience and make them purchase their products, instead of yours; essentially, they try to steal your market share and your profits.
When you launch a new product or service, enter a new market, or doing both, your go-to-market plan is the most important thing if you want success.
A company’s marketing plan is the broad document that brings together all marketing strategies and initiatives, as well as your overall goals and objectives. However, the go-to-market plan is the more focused plan, and it is developed specifically for that particular product or market.
A general marketing plan includes virtually everything related to your company’s marketing strategy. All your products and services are included in the plan, your main goals, and objectives, major initiatives, and strategies employed during the plan. It includes ample details about public relations, digital marketing, event planning, promotions, and direct sales.
On the other hand, the go-to-market plan is focused on a specific product and how that product can be launched in the new market. It includes details about your internal resources, the sales forces, as well as external resources and distribution channels. The go-to-market plan brings value to your general marketing plan, it builds a unique experience for customers and makes you more competitive.
Here are the main benefits of a good go-to-market plan:
- the time needed to launch a new product in a new market is reduced.
- there are lower risks and costs associated with failed launches in poorly studied markets.
- the go-to-market plan delivers the best experience for the customer.
- you invest your resources on the right path, with better direction, especially when compared to other strategies.
The go-to-market plan will have the following parts:
- Product strategy – this is designed to differentiate your products from those offered by your competitors; this builds brand awareness and sets your products apart in the market.
- Promotion strategy – this includes cross-promotions and pricing promotions during the product launch.
- Channel strategy – the channels you used to market your product should also be used to educate and support customers or support partners.
- Marketing strategy – this includes the efforts required to contact and engage with customers; for instance, your employees must receive training on how to communicate with the audience, engage with them and promote the products.
Customer experience strategy – this provides details about the customer’s journey, from initial awareness to activation, purchase, renewal, repurchase, cancellation, or referral.
GO-TO-MARKET PLAN: The product strategy
The channel strategy is focused on educating your customers about the product and what can it do for them. It helps you sell the products directly to customers.
Forming a product strategy before the launchIdeally, the product strategy should be planned before the launch. You’ll need to capture the product’s role, its reason for existence. You should determine what problem it solves and what is the motivation of the manufacturer. To have a successful product strategy, your product development team should collaborate cross-functionally across all departments. This guarantees that the product roadmap is comprehensive and relevant. Make sure to consider these ideas when developing your product strategy:
- Expand the product vision – your product strategy should capture the changing landscape and your customers’ needs over time; if you have a limited vision, your strategy may suffer;
- Collaborate cross-functionally – a good product strategy needs relevant input from multiple teams in your company – the marketing team, the sales team, product managers, support and technical teams, but also customer service; also, key stakeholders should be involved in the process; when people collaborate, the product can quickly become a success, even in a new market;
- Inspire – the product strategy should also inspire people towards a greater cause; you are not just selling a product, you are changing how people think and behave;
- Have an elevator pitch – a good business pitch should be as simple and short as possible; nobody wants to read a long paragraph – your clients will be bored or annoyed and your product will suffer; you should be able to communicate your ideas in short, simple phrases.
Creating the product messageProduct messaging is important because it lets you target a specific audience. Your customers can easily determine what the product is about, how it can help them, and what are its benefits. Product messaging can make or break a product – if it’s not good, customers will not understand it. If it’s good, your customers will love it instantly. Here’s what you should consider when building a good product message:
- Communicate value – always choose to communicate value instead of features or special discounts; customers are usually interested only in the benefits or the values derived from using the product;
- Know your audience – make sure to build your buyer personas using market segmentation data; this data is important to know and understand your target audience; the buyer persona is a fictional representation of a potential customer;
- Be specific about the value you are offering – try to talk to your prospective customers about their problems and what type of solution you are offering; explain that your product solves their problems;
- Collaborate cross-functionally with all teams – collaboration is important when creating the product message – don’t do it in a vacuum; instead, talk to and communicate with specialists from multiple fields; talk to your marketing, sales, and technical departments when creating the product message;
- Use excellent writing – unfocused, poor, confusing, long-winded writing won’t attract customers; it will only bore or annoy them; keep messages short, attractive, and concise; be specific about your product and explain what’s important;
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GO TO MARKET PLAN: PRICING AND PROMOTION STRATEGY
The pricing strategy is a direct reflection of the information you gathered during the previous phases. It's the result of the data you gathered about the market, the buyers, and the competitors that are already active in the industry.
Setting your product’s price
The pricing strategy is a direct reflection of the information you gathered during the previous phases. It’s the result of the data you gathered about the market, the buyers, and the competitors that are already active in the industry. Here are some important pricing strategies to consider:
- Premium strategy – a lot of new products are priced higher than the competition, creating the effect of perceived value; if you choose this strategy, focus on having an excellent presentation for the product (a good example are Apple’s products);
- Initial low pricing for market penetration – if your goal is to enter the market quickly and attract a larger audience, set lower prices for your products; obviously, this may be challenging for many companies, as the profits are lower, especially in the short-run; however, the market may respond well to lower prices, and you may attract a larger customer base; a good example of this strategy is Xiaomi, a Chinese brand that offers lower-priced products;
- Constant low pricing – this strategy can be employed by companies that have a large sales volume, such as Walmart; their costs are low, and their marketing costs are also low;
- Price skimming – this refers to a strategy employed by some companies – they initially charge higher prices, especially at product launch events, and then they lower the prices to attract new customers; this strategy follows closely the technology adoption curve, similar to user adoption; when implemented correctly, this strategy can yield high returns for new products, creating powerful market trends;
- Psychological pricing – this strategy creates an emotional purchase decision; customers may purchase a product priced at $195, but not one priced at $200, even if the difference is very small;
- Bundled pricing – a fairly popular strategy where you group similar products together, but at a lower price; for instance, fast food restaurants often do this – McDonald’s grouped up a burger, a drink, and fries to create the Happy Meal, which is available at a lower price than bought separately; customers may feel that they are getting more value for the same price, increasing sales.
The feedback loop
Creating a feedback loop is important for your go-to-market plan. This helps you gauge how customers are really feeling about your new product. You can achieve this feedback loop either directly or via various support systems. Let’s take a closer look:
- One-on-one interviews and customer surveys – conduct interviews and use surveys, preferably quickly after launch, to capture fresh ideas and thought about the product;
- Sales feedback – your sales team should do in-depth inquiries and follow up
- Customer service or support – your customer service and support teams should hear every type of feedback from your customers – from the slightly unhappy individual to the angry client;
- Forum feedback – this is a great opportunity to create a feedback loop where your customers share their experience with other customers; they essentially rely on a community of like-minded customers, who already know your product; make sure your customer service and support teams are active in the debate;
- Employee feedback – try to gather feedback from employees – this information is important as it comes from people inside your organization;
- Social media feedback – this type of feedback comes in massive amounts of unfiltered opinions; you’ll get every type of opinion, from ecstatic clients to furious ones; make sure to understand how to assess this data and analyze it; if the response to your product is very high, consider subscribing to a social media analyzer tool.
Promotions at launch
Try to create a special promotion during the product launch. Every good product should have an attractive promotion to capture the early buyers – the people who cannot resist making the purchase. Here’s what to do:
- Sampling the product – make your customers try out the product; as soon as they do it, they should be hooked;
- Coupons and other special offers – even 10 percent off can do wonders during the launch
- Promotional offers – try to bundle several products together to make your new product more attractive; ideally, include products that your audience already know about;
Preparing the frontline
Good customer communication is critical when you launch a new product. The people who regularly interact directly with customers, such as the salespeople, support teams, or customer service, have to know how to present the product and make it more attractive. These teams of people interact daily with potential customers, so they know important details about the product and how customers see it. For instance, frontline employees interact with customers who openly share complaints or praise. These frontline employees should be part of your go-to-market plan because they interact directly with customers.
How should you handle frontline interaction in your company? The key to good frontline communication is building good customer advocacy. This is achieved by better internal communication, especially among different teams or departments. The frontline employees must be involved and trained on your general product strategy. Everyone should get involved in all development phases, take part in the marketing strategy and brainstorm new ideas.
To make sure your frontline is prepared for a new product launch, you should include a frontline-ready checklist in your go-to-market plan. When your frontline employees are ready, they will:
- know the target audience – their values, needs, or interests
- fully embrace the product vision – this person understands how the product works, what it does, and the details that make it special for customers;
- position the product benefits effectively – especially when compared to your competitors
- believe in customer intimacy – use every interaction as a way to help, listen and offer more information to customers; this helps fuel customer advocacy;
- identify what makes the best customer interactions – also, figure out if there is an increase in customer advocacy as a result;
An engaged, empowered frontline team understands how important customer feedback is. The frontline team should report or share the information it receives with other teams involved in the product development or marketing strategy. When the communication with the frontline teams is poor, the product strategy will suffer and your launch may be compromised.
GO TO MARKET PLAN: THE COMMUNICATION CHANNELS
The channel strategy is focused on educating your customers about the product and what can it do for them. It helps you sell the products directly to customers.
Choosing the primary channelsThe channel strategy is focused on educating your customers about the product and what can it do for them. It helps you sell the products directly to customers. The first step to focus on is to actually find the best channels for your new product. Firstly, pay attention to the existing channels and if they are good for your product. In many cases, existing channels are not right for your new product. The right channels have to target the right customers, in order to create a seamless experience. If you want to have a good go-to-market plan, you have to pick the best channels for the product. Here’s what you need to focus on when creating a channel strategy:
- Where do the target customers make purchases? – do they usually buy products online or in retail stores? Do they need a demo before making a purchase?
- Does your product fit the channel? – some products are not suited for a specific channel; for instance, a tech product can be sold online, but customers will want to test it before making the final purchase.
- What type of interaction is needed to make the purchase decision? – do your target customers require a special type of interaction before making the purchase? Is a quick checkout enough? For instance, a mattress should be sold online or in a brick-and-mortar store?
- Would your customers buy the product through a partner? – if the answer is yes, the partner must be trustworthy and provide a good experience, or the same type of experience they would expect from your company.
- Where can you create an advantage over the competition? – try to benchmark your competitors’ approaches.
Managing for channel performanceYour channel strategy within the go-to-market plan should include partners who can help you increase channel performance. The relationships you create with these partners should be based on the sales pipeline performance or the time it takes to make the sale. These relationships should be based on trust, mutual understanding, and working together to achieve the same goal. Your partners may feel like an extension of your companies’ sales organization, rather than just outsiders working for your company. Here are some softer tips to boost your channel performance with partners:
- Identify potential obstacles with partners – selecting a partner for your business is important during product development; if you choose a particular partner, you choose it because they can sell your products or services, and you trust them; your go-to-market plan should include the pros and cons of your collaboration, the possible obstacles in the channel, and how you can improve the relationship; good communication will help both sides align better;
- Incentivize channel partners – aligning your strategies makes the customer journey easier; it also makes it easier for your partners, who get to be involved in multiple product development strategies; they essentially become part of the selling process and get access to possible rebates, big deal discounts, and performance-based campaigns;
- Treat channel partners as true partners rather than employees – keep in mind that the channel partners don’t work for you; they are your equals, not your subordinates, and they should be cooperative; increased cooperation means better channel performance and more sales for your company;
- Set and share realistic key performance indicators (KPI) with partners – KPIs are the key metrics you should focus on; KPIs will show how successful your partnership is;
- Celebrate any wins with your partners – take the time to recognize, reward, and celebrate partners; try to win their loyalty in the long run; keep in mind that the market will become more competitive in the coming years, and your customer base should expand;
- Know when to change partners or look for new ones – evaluate your partners regularly, based on the agreed KPIs; if they perform under the metrics, think about a partner exit strategy or how to cease working together; however, try to preserve the relationships with partners that are active in other areas of your organization.
Interacting with customersYour customers rely on help to successfully navigate channels. They have to be educated and need adequate support throughout the purchasing journey. Here are the most important techniques to help you educate and support your customers:
- Create a customer-focused culture – this shows that you care about your customers, and are not simply looking to make more sales; make sure to answer questions and concerns as quickly as possible; similarly, handle negative reviews or feedback with an empathetic ear; delight your customers with your attentive nature;
- Be positive and kind at all times throughout your channels – work with people who have a high emotional quotient; these people have the ability to recognize emotions and incorporate other’s feelings into their thinking; this is important for your customer-focused culture which translates into a better channel etiquette; in time, you will be able to create positive, polite experiences for your customers;
- Support your customers through open communication – make it as easy as possible for your customers to contact your team; let them decide if they want help and how they want it; make sure to have an open line of communication at all times; respond quickly to concerns and questions coming from your customers;
- Reward customers – try to offer some kind of reward to loyal customers; offer some ways for customers to receive these gifts, special offers, and perks; include free shipping, discounts, loyalty programs, or first notice of new products;
- Develop support materials and helpful tools – customers love it when they receive extra support materials when buying a product; these can include how-to-guides, manuals, leaflets, as well as interactions on forums with other customers, blogs, and other types of support tools; these materials help create customer communities and help people understand your product better;
- Make your channels personal – Spotify, Netflix, and Amazon are huge players in the marketing sector; they all have excellent recommendation tools for existing customers, based on their purchase history and how they usually interact with their channels; try to mimic these large companies – customers appreciate companies that can recognize what they like, what type of products they usually buy and their preferences; try to offer suggestions and make personal recommendations.
Sales training and supportYour go-to-market plan should also include a detailed education and support plan for your sales and support teams. Your sales and support teams should follow a complete training program in order to be successful. You cannot just provide a selling playbook and let them sell the product. If you do this, your product may fail. Training is critically important and should be done continuously. Here are some training tips to follow:
- Brand education – teach your employees about your company, the brand, and the main products you sell; make sure your sales team understand your company and your brand; this helps them sell your products better and answer questions coming from customers; educate your team about new market trends, customer preferences, typical customers, your target audience, their values and what they want;
- Create a list of desired sales and support characteristics – after this, work on their skills development prior to the launch;
- Reinforce your new product campaign goals and objectives – this should be done in order to ensure that everyone understands the marketing strategy and direction;
- Set up a repository of tools and materials where both sales and support teams can access the needed information – make sure you give your support and sales teams the materials they need in order to do their job, without them needing to ask for it; then, deliver the tools, the marketing brochures, demonstration videos, website functionality, user case studies and various other types of information that helps during the sales process;
- Employ a CRM system, and train our teams to track their interactions and outreach with customers – a good CRM system helps your team manage and analyze customer relationships through data; this drives more sales and retains customers for longer;
- Create a web-based learning platform for training and continued education – online learning is ideal for employee training; try to establish an online training system which is available 24/7; use technology for social collaboration and let team members educate one another;
GO TO MARKET PLAN: THE MARKETING STRATEGY
The channel strategy is focused on educating your customers about the product and what can it do for them. It helps you sell the products directly to customers.
The value propositionThis factor determines the product’s overall value to the market. It answers the simple question “why would a customer buy your product or service over another company?”. Keep in mind that the value proposition changes over time, and it’s not static. Also, the value proposition differentiates your product from similar products on the market. Here are some signs of a poorly developed value proposition:
- The product statement lacks clarity.
- The statement is too specific to your product.
- It’s difficult to understand in five seconds or less.
- It’s filled with jargon and hype that you can’t demonstrate.
- There are no immediate benefits for the customer.
The positioning statementDuring this phase, you go back to your previous market research, which includes both your competitors and your customers. The value proposition statement must address these questions:
- Who is your audience? Who are your prospective customers? Make sure to be very specific about the audience and what they want;
- What is the unique advantage of your product? What is the unique value that makes it attractive? Make sure to point out what your product can deliver and no one else can mimic it;
- How can you show your customers that you are reliable, and they should believe you?
Product use case scenariosYour go-to-market plan should also include detailed use cases for your product. This information helps your sales team better understand the product and how to sell it. The best way to build these product use case scenarios is to work with the buyer personas. Descriptions may need to dig deeper, revealing how buyers may interact with the product and whether they like it. Some buyers may have different needs, so make sure to take them into consideration. If you know what your customers want, you can create better marketing messages. Use cases can also be used as purchasing scenarios during the sales training. They also entice potential buyers to learn more about your product and begin their journey towards purchase. Try to create multiple use cases for your sales team in order to present multiple situations. Explain each case separately and present information about the product, what makes it special and how it can help buyers.
Tell the storyThe go-to-market plan needs excellent communication with your clients, both at launch and beyond. This keeps everyone interested in your company and product, so try to make it great. The launch – here’s what you should focus on:
- Release an official product announcement – try to get your announcement to as many people as possible; use a news-wire service, social media, blogs, and other various outlets;
- Set up a specific landing page for your campaign – both social and digital media platforms should be used to share your announcement; social media channels can be massively effective during your launch, as they will drive customers to your landing page and website; here, they will get more information about the product, they will be able to ask questions and interact with your support team;
- Create excitement about your launch – do something to attract people to your launch; for instance, create an event to help your launch stand out; encourage people to attend the event, take photos and videos; share everything on social media to gain more traction; create multiple opportunities for live-streaming, secondary events, workshops, conferences and other types of events, especially for people who couldn’t attend the main launch event;
- Continue with media relations and pitching of interesting story angles – find amazing, unique ways to talk about your product; create stories about how it can be used and how it can solve a customer’s problems;
- Use social media to share relevant content that helps customers’ decision-making process – think about more than just marketing messages; for instance, use print media to report on interesting stories or news that would be attractive for your customers;
- Build compelling content by invoking your influencers – keep both your customers and your brand ambassadors involved throughout the entire marketing campaign; brand ambassadors will help you determine the best ways to attract customers and will create their own promotions on their marketing channels; these include chat rooms, quick polls, questionnaires, and live events; make sure to deliver the best message to your customers and be there to engage better with them.
Marketing ProgramsA good marketing strategy should be based on the ability to create powerful marketing messages that are distributed through the right channels. This is key when trying to reach your customers and create meaningful interactions. Here’s what you have to focus on:
- Website marketing – every section of your website has to have a call to action (CTA); website visitors should always be invited to do more, to read more, to learn more about your company and your products; there should always be more to do on your website – online demos, free trials, icons to social media or sign-up for newsletters; you should have rich, relevant content on your website to help people learn more about your products;
- Public relations – use public relations tools to build your brand, credibility, and trust; try to build mutual relationships via storytelling about your product;
- Social media marketing campaigns – social media marketing is very important when creating your brand and building product awareness; this should generate further interest from customers, generate more demand, and delight customers with more content; social media also helps create conversations, resulting in shares, likes or comments, ultimately leading to more sales; social media should be an important part of your general marketing plan;
- Email marketing – every message you send to your customers should be relevant and meaningful; try to create excellent email campaigns, with a clear focus; this is how many companies grew; for instance, LinkedIn scaled the business via this approach; email marketing is a powerful tool to build your brand, product awareness, get more sales, collect more reviews and feedback;
- Search Engine Optimization and Marketing (SEO and SEM) – your website must be search engine optimized; this includes all pages and all content that is on your website; SEO is very good for your website, helping you become more visible online and get more visitors; if your website isn’t visible in search engines, consumers simply don’t visit your website, leading to poor conversions;
- Paid display advertising and promotions through magazines, radio, mobile, web, and TV – your customers may be bombarded with marketing messages on these platforms; because of this, your marketing should be carefully crafted in order to attract attention;
GO TO MARKET PLAN: Progress and Performance
When you launch a new product you need a few basic KPIs in order to keep track of what's happening. This will help you see how the product is doing and how to adapt your strategy.
The key performance indicatorsWhen you launch a new product you need a few basic KPIs in order to keep track of what’s happening. This will help you see how the product is doing and how to adapt your strategy. In marketing, this compass is called a key performance indicator. KPIs are very important as they determine the effectiveness of the business initiatives, helping employees make informed decisions during the process. Although there are hundreds or even thousands of different KPIs to consider, you should focus on just a few important ones. Tracking too many KPIs can be counterproductive, you’ll just need a few in order to get the data you need. Here’s how to pick the KPIs:
- KPIs need to be easily translated into information – this gives you a clear course of action, according to your company’s main goals and objectives.
- Select one or two KPIs per business goal – try to narrow down the KPIs you track, depending on your available resources.
- Know the difference between KPIs and metrics you choose to support them – KPIs help you focus on what really is important for your business; they can be called metrics, but every metric can be called a KPI; the word “key” is what sets them apart.
- Select KPIs that are easy to track – use digital KPIs and metrics that capture the data you want to receive; focus primarily on websites and social media channels.
- Make your KPIs visible to other areas of your company – implement a cross-departmental KPI dashboard to track multiple KPIs across various departments.
- Store KPI data over time – spot trends, benchmark success and see how everything evolves over time;
- Test your KPIs using the SMART approach – every KPI you track should be reliable, specific, measurable, achievable, and timely; if they are not, don’t use them.
Internal communication and alignmentCommunication is better when your team is aligned and knows the product. Try to use modern technology to enhance internal communication and the exchange of ideas. Here are some great ideas:
- video conferencing – Skype or Zoom
- project management – Basecamp, Monday or Trello
- internal communication – Slack
Continuously evolve performance measurementsYour go-to-market tracking system should include KPIs, but it also has to be flexible and adapt to the changes in your marketing strategy. Keep in mind that marketing strategies change over time, so the performance indicators have to adapt to these changes. Measurements have to be adjusted based on the shifting goals, objectives, or channel performance. Here are some important questions that have to be asked when implementing a performance measurement model:
- Are your company’s business objectives the same?
- How reliable are the metrics you use?
- What type of qualitative information do you need? Do you have to routinely adjust the information you get?
- What tools are more effective to measure the success of the marketing strategy?
- How well are you capturing the performance of the frontline team?
- Do your channels perform well?
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