Go-To-Market (GTM) Strategy in 4 Steps

Go-To-Market (GTM)

To develop a Go-To-Market (GTM) Strategy, I suggest following four steps:

1 Know Your Product Well

Quick Guide GTM Strategy Dilbert New Product Knowledge

It is OK for Sales superstars in Dilbert world to know little about the product. But you have to know it very well to devise a successful Go-to-market strategy. Not only that, you should be able to describe it in sufficient detail to other departments in your company.

Product Management Canvas is one such tool. It captures the product in one canvas and gives a good 360-degree view.

2 Ask Yourself Three Fundamental Questions

2.1 What to sell?

What exactly are you selling? This has to be articulated for each customer segment and each value prop.

Many times a solution could be combinations of your products. In that case, above needs to be done for all product combinations.

2.2 Whom to sell?

Depending on if you are a new product or a mature product, your userbase and customers would differ.

If you are a new product, identify key influencers, usual suspects among early adopters and focus on reaching an early majority.

If you are a matured product, identify key late majority and laggards. Decision makers in large enterprises (like the CTO’s office, the Procurement division) can help you situate yourself stronger while the product team keeps innovating to keep your product relevant to your client.

The key is to identify right recommenders and decision influencers for long-term success.

2.3 How to sell?

Pricing is complex. Sometimes, it is easy to start with tiered prices that allow you to serve small-scale, small-budget customers to allow for revenue while you hunt for large ones. You must have seen ones like this:

Go To Market GTM Strategy Pricing Sample

Your Pricing strategy should have such Pricing models and option to use channels to accelerate sales.

3 The Sales Funnel

We know the typical sales funnel. It is the journey of your customer from when they become aware of your product to when they actually buy it to when they choose to rebuy it.

The journey in short:

Awareness -> Consideration -> Research -> Selection -> Purchase -> Delivery -> Support -> Repeat Purchase -> Recommendation to Buy

Understand it is very important and a plan to how to egg them on to the next stage.

4 Work on These Nineteen Tasks

  1. Time of Launch
  2. Launch Strategy and Collaterals
  3. Sales and Delivery Channels
  4. Positioning and Promotion Strategy
  5. Decision Makers and Influencers
  6. Recommenders
  7. Sales Collateral
  8. Content Strategy
  9. Marketing Collateral
  10. User Support Docs
  11. Training Collaterals
  12. Change Management
  13. Social Media Assets
  14. Digital Marketing Assets
  15. Brand Playbook
  16. Pricing Model Experiments
  17. Market Positioning
  18. Competitive Positioning
  19. Ecosystem Map

 

7 Reasons Why Your Product Will Fail

7 Reasons Why Your Product Will Fail

Seven things your users think that will cause your product to fail

  1. “I don’t like it”
  2. “I don’t even want it”
  3. “I don’t even know how to use it”
  4. “I am happy with what I have”
  5. “I don’t want to pay for it”
  6. “No one else is using it”
  7. “I don’t trust it”

And what things you can do to over come this

Follow the deck to see where you can use techniques like:

  1. Rapid Prototyping
  2. Wire-Frames
  3. Reference Products (X of Y for Z)
  4. Gap Analysis
  5. USP Identification
  6. Product Definition
  7. Experience Design
  8. User Interface
  9. Habit Building
  10. Empathy Maps
  11. Product Migration
  12. Product Marketing
  13. Product Pricing
  14. User Research
  15. Business Models
  16. Go To Market
  17. Product Marketing
  18. Product Branding
  19. Product Support
  20. Product Reviews
  21. User Psychology

Sharing

SlideShare: https://www.slideshare.net/ddiinnxx/7-reasons-why-your-software-will-fail

SpeakerDeck: https://speakerdeck.com/ddiinnxx/7-reasons-why-your-software-will-fail


 

Product Management Canvas – Product in a Snapshot

Product Management Canvas (PMC)

The Product Management Canvas (PMC), is a strategic management and entrepreneurial articulation tool. It allows one to describe a product having the highest return on investment versus risk.

This is different from Product Model Canvas or Roman Pichler’s Product Canvas.

Where Does Product Management Canvas Fit?

Let us understand the Product Flow. I have talked about it earlier in the Hackathon: From Idea to a Product in a Day post.

 

Using Product Management Canvas

To summarise the flow diagram:

Using Elevator Pitch & Product in a Box, we describe the product we want to build. However, no product exists in a vacuum and is part of an ecosystem. We then layout the Product Ecosystem that enables the key product. The product is then described using the Product Management Canvas.

A Product Management Canvas then informs the process of Epics. Adding a business case to these we arrive at a Product Backlog. Each item in the Product Backlog can lead to one or more stories. When these stories Go Live and the hit the market, in the spirit of build-measure-learn, we learn and periodically do the Product Backlog Grooming.

The Elevator Pitch & Product In A Box, (Lean) Business Model Canvas, High-Level Products Layout and Product Management Canvas are explained in the blog post above.

Epics, Product Backlog, Stories and Build-Measure-Learn are standard terms that are described as part of the Agile process.

I think this sits one step before Roman Pichler’s Product Canvas and used to plan and describe a product, rather than track the agile product creation/development.

Understanding The Product Management Canvas

The canvas started as a checklist for Product Managers to ensure they have not missed any aspect of Product planning. However, it was always aimed to capture the current state of an evolving product. Thus, Product Management Canvas should be used to communicate across various groups and departments to ensure all have the same picture of the product.

Using The Product Management Canvas

Using Product Management Canvas Steps

The suggested flow is:

  1. Idea
  2. Market
  3. Customer Segment
  4. Business Value
  5. Features
  6. Metrics
  7. Evangelism
  8. Visual Identity
  9. Go To Market
  10. Key Resources
  11. Risks

Now let is look at each section in detail:

Product Management Canvas (PMC)

Idea

We start with describing the original problem or opportunity that the product addresses. It can be a unique need, a dormant need (we are creating the market) or aspiration (of the user/customer) that needs to be addressed.

Once the above is stated, it is important to connect it what the idea of the product and state how it addresses the above.

Market

Start by stating the market size (defined as the market volume or the market potential). VCs will want this to be a very big number. Big enough to accommodate you and all your competition.

The state the market opportunity your product addresses from the whole market size. This should be a more realistic number that should allow you sufficient growth so as to allow you to give investors a good rate of return.

A product never exists in a vacuum. There is an ecosystem of partners that enable it. We should note all key partners (data suppliers, data consumers, channels, SDKs and so on).

What’s fun without any competition? It is important to note competition and track them. If you have analysed competition in detail, you can add the link to that document. My thoughts on how to do Competition Analysis.

Customer Segment

Identifying if the product is B2B or B2C is sometimes obvious. But going one level deeper is important. (does my B2B target Startup, SME, Business Houses, MNC, etc. or does my B2C target BPL, LMC, MC, UMC, HNI, etc.) is important.

Does my B2B target Startup, SME, Business Houses, MNC, etc. or does my B2C target BPL (Below Poverty Line), LMC (Lower Middle Class), MC (Middle Class), UMC (Upper Middle Class), HNI (High Networth Individuals), etc.)?

Also important is to identify Early Adopters, Influencers, Recommenders and Innovators who try something new.

Business Value

Large organisations that create a lot of products need to ensure that there is a product – organization fit. This would involve making sure that it fits in tot established ecosystems, reuses tools used, etc and does not create whole parallel infrastructure requirements.

The product – market fit is very important and needs to be articulated crisply.

There are many revenue models available and many times the same product will have multiples of them. State the considered revenue models in this section.

Cost Analysis is a complex task but having a broad idea of the cost of producing the product that reflects the pricing model is recorded. Even when the aim is to invest in seeding the product, it is important to state and communicate the revenue – cost ratio.

It is important to state the key Regulatory & Compliance items. These should not slip through cracks of day-to-day tasks.

Features

It is important to state the value propositions / USP and communicate it uniformly. Not every differentiation is a USP, nor should it be. Along with USP, the other key features that set us apart, make usage simple or make us better than competition should also be noted.

Metrics

We all talk about success metrics. But before a product is successful there are some metrics that are minimal a product should achieve. These should not be ‘not meeting success metrics’, but independent ones.

Eg: while achieving an MAU of 1M is the success for your chat app, the number of messages exchanged is not growing at the same rate as user adoption is a failure metric.

Failure metrics are important as they tell us how key hypotheses could be wrong and it is time to reassess them and re-learn and re-build.

Viability metrics are good to have to make sure we are on track to success.

Evangelism

Product evangelism is, as Guy Kawasaki put it years ago, “selling the dream.”  It’s helping people to imagine the future, and inspiring them to help create that future.

Many things need to fall into place for an Evangelist to be effective. This section offers a checklist of essential items need to enable an evangelist.

This includes an elevator pitch, relevant content generation is a content strategy to keep it updated, uniform terminology across all departments and collaterals, SEO strategy so content is geared to show up in right searches, right brand assets, and social media presence.

Using all possible social networks is not the right approach. Choose and state ones that are relevant to the product, the audience and manageable by the team.

Visual Identity

This section offers a checklist of essential items need to establish a visual identity.

Product name, logo, icons, brand playbook, presentation/docs/stationery templates, product docs templates, Social Network assets (cover picture, etc.) and display ads assets.

Go To Market

This section offers a checklist of essential items to formulate an effective go to market strategy.

In the case of a new product, time of launch is an important date/period. Product Manager should initiate and collaborate in the launch strategy & related collaterals, describing sales and product delivery channels, positioning & promotion strategy, identify and help reach out to decision makers, influencers & recommenderssales collateral, marketing collateral, user support docs and training collaterals.

Often a product leads to changes in processes and people. The product manager has to think about a change management template.

Key Resources

Stating key resources is important as it allows a product manager to track them. This includes licenses (eg: SSL licenses as anybody can forget to renew on time like this, this and this), 3rd party platforms like SDK, analytics tools, etc.

Risks

State the known shortcomings and assumptions made. This helps plan the build-measure-learn better.

Product managers need to be paranoid about the product getting disrupted. Disruption Readiness is important to consider by identifying processes and methods that can be all be replaced in one go.

More

 


 

Product Thinking – UX Design + Product Management + Business Model

Before we start on Product Thinking, it will be good to understand what a Product is.

Product is something that is the result of a process.

Now, in software world, how does this apply. Let us see:

Product is something that is result of a software process.

This is better. However, is Design (Experience Design, etc) a software process? Not really. However, it is a process in itself. So, an updated definition then:

Product is something that is result of a design & software process.

Better. However, I am of the opinion that a product without a business model is neither sustainable nor a solution.

So, let us add that to the mix.

Product is something that is result of a design & software process and has a business model.

OK, there! Now we proceed to Product Thinking.

Product Thinking

Here is it in one diagram:

Product Thinking

Product Thinking is not the process of product creation itself. It is thinking of the product along with the whole ecosystem. The ecosystem is often a combination of:

  • Target Audience
  • Problem
  • Strategy
  • Objective / Vision / Goal
  • Features
  • User Experience
  • User Environment
  • Process of Making
  • Revenues

Based on Product Management Canvas, we can defined Product Thinking as:

Building on the value your customers will need to achieve business goals measured using related success and failure metrics with providing well designed experience using a well-defined go-to-market strategy and support.

Note: Need v/s Will Need

You will notice, I said ‘will need’ rather than ‘need’. Lot of innovations anticipate a need to create a new one. So, to acknowledge that, a ‘will’ has been added.

Note: Platforms v/s Channels

Platforms (backend, APIs, multi-tenancy, etc) benefit from System Centric design (eg: System Thinking) while Channels (apps, websites, devices, kiosks, etc) which humans interact with benefit from User Centric design (eg: Design Thinking).

Reference

https://designyourthinking.com/product-thinking-an-introduction/
https://medium.com/@jaf_designer/why-product-thinking-is-the-next-big-thing-in-ux-design-ee7de959f3fe
http://www.ddiinnxx.com/shuhari-learn-digress-transcend/
https://www.interaction-design.org/literature/article/product-thinking-is-problem-solving
https://www.devbridge.com/articles/product-thinking-build-what-your-customer-needs/

 

Taking In-House Product To Market

taking-in-house-product-to-market-golden-ratio

Exploring how to take a product that been built for internal use by a company to market. Starting with why it could / should be done, discussing the stages in which this can be done, specific tasks for a Product Manager and finally various tasks for various team.

1. Intro

1.1 Internal v/s External

taking-in-house-product-to-market-int-ext

2. Why

2.1 Why Take To Market

  1. Revenue Potential
  2. Employee Morale
  3. Leadership
    1. Thought
    2. Technology
    3. Product
    4. Design
    5. Domain
    6. Engineering
    7. Practices

2.2 Five Questions to Start With

  • Who else will buy this?Names of likely buyers and categories of buyers. The reason ‘else’ is emphasized is highlight that there is already one customer, your own org.
  • What all options will they reject to buy this?Similar products or option to custom-build
  • For what key benefit, you think, they will pay?The USP / Key Value Prop
  • How much and how do you think they will pay for this?First take on Pricing and pricing model
  • Why would your org support this effort?A powerful reason

3. How

3.1 The Golden Logarithmic Spiral

First thing to keep in mind:

taking-in-house-product-to-market-golden-ratio

The complexity in each stage of this process will increase logarithmically. Remember this spiral very well.

3.2 Six Stages of Business Rollout

External Product will be exponentially more complex compared to in-house version.

taking-in-house-product-to-market-cup

The left side of this cup implies is that a we climb down from what has been built/learnt till now, unlearn, the complexity will decrease.

However, as we reanalyze and then start the process, the complexity will grow exponentially.

The stages:

 3.2.1 Unlearn

taking-in-house-product-to-market-unlearn

 

Unlearning is very important. In any future crisis, resorting to what worked earlier can be disastrous. Doing experiments anew is important.

3.2.2 Re-Analyze

taking-in-house-product-to-market-re-analyze

Starting with 5 Questions mentioned earlier, re-analyze the product, its reason and benefits with whole market in view.

3.2.3 Early Access

taking-in-house-product-to-market-early-access

Good time to test many hypotheses.

3.2.4 Limited Access

taking-in-house-product-to-market-limited-access

Less Complexity compared to to where you are now.

3.2.5 Open Access

taking-in-house-product-to-market-open-access

Much more Complexity than you could ever face in-house. Plan for it, but no point guessing/estimating this and beyond. Thus, take lean approach.

3.2.6 Self Serve

taking-in-house-product-to-market-self-serve

Plan for it, but no point guessing/estimating this and beyond. Thus, continue to take lean approach.

3.2.7 In Detail

taking-in-house-product-to-market-stages

3.3 Seven Tasks for the ProMa

  1.  Get Design team to work on branding and reassess the user flow and experience
  2. Get Product team to redo the Product Management Canvas
  3. Get Quality team to ensure the product will work well them opened up
  4. Get Security team to analyse the risks as product is opened up
  5. Get Marketing team to deliver collaterals, articles, blogs, ads, etc
  6. Get Support team ready to help users as if their lives depended on it
  7. Get Sales team going and bringing on booking / revenues

 3.4 Twenty-Five Actions for the Teams

3.4.1 Design

1. Design an independent branding and design language

2. Rethink user flows and user experience based on user research as 100% of new users may not be directly accessible

3.4.2 Product

3. Rethink your MVP

4. Redefine product vision

5. Take control of Roadmap and break free from shackles of Product Sponsor and early advocates

6. Remove confidential analysis, techniques and flows

7. Re-assess product-market fit

8. Take competition more seriously and not just source of ideas

9. Revisit rejected partners and rebuild an ecosystem

10. Add Role Management to accommodate for Admins and Super-Admins

11. Re-access tech decisions on tools, stacks and methods

12. Start saying NO to requests from Product Sponsor or early users

13. Consider licensing

14. Consider threat of Piracy and security breaches

3.4.3 Feedback, Support, Marketing & Communication

15. Build searchable and easily navigable Knowledgebase to enable self-discovery

16. Add reporting of bugs, providing feedback, request support from within the product

17. Add reporting of bugs, providing feedback, request support using social media

18. Incentivise / reward communication from users and partners

19. Reach out and market using social media and do not hesitate to advertise

3.4.4 Business & Commercial

20. Add ‘buying’ of product, even if it is for $0

21. Establish a pricing/discounting/packaging policy

22. Retrain team to focus on revenues and setup efficient revenue tracking

23. Making ‘buying’ or e-commerce via your product simple

 3.4.5 Organisation

24. Get a dedicated team

25. Get branding, support, marketing and sales teams in place

 4. Best Practices

 4.1 For Open Sourcing

  1.  Technical Communication
  2. Version Control, Document Management, and Distribution
  3. Quality Assurance
  4. Build and Test Management
  5. Project Management
  6. Knowledge Management

 4.2 For Commercialising

  1.  Clear pricing policy
  2. Easy to understand licensing policy
  3. Easy to report bugs and provide feedback
  4. Continuous security analysis and piracy protection
  5. Easy to use e-commerce and buy
  6. Ability to define roles and grant permissions
  7. Self-discovery via knowledge management
  8. Support (free and paid variants)
  9. Enables 3rd parties to build products or provide service on top of your product
  10. Analytics

5. On SlideShare

SlideShare – Taking In-House Product to Market

6. On SpeakerDeck

SpeakerDeck – Taking In-House Product to Market