The IT services and technology industry is one of the worst for planning its sales and marketing activities. So many times products or services are taken to market with no or little view of how they will be sold or to whom. The result? In the majority of cases this unplanned approach leads to failure. It doesn’t need to be that way.
IMPORTANT UPDATE: Since I wrote this article over three years ago, I’ve seen many times when people and businesses need help to get a pragmatic, actionable Sales and Marketing Plan. If that’s you, you’ll enjoy this latest article on the subject of Kickstart Sales and Marketing Planning.
Creating a Go-to-Market Plan isn’t difficult. It just needs consideration of the following points, and then ensuring that all those touched by the plan are aware of it and follow it.
A Go-to-Market Plan should encompass the following points:
What is the market and who buys this product or solution?
What are we trying to sell and who might buy it?
- What are the target markets?
- Are the target markets generic (and could therefore apply to any organisation) or specific to a particular industry segment?
- Who are potential buyers of this product or service?
- Why would somebody buy this product or service?
- How could a customer for this product or service be developed to increase profitability?
Key metrics planning, forecasting and decision making
Will we make money doing this and when?
- Pricing strategies for this product or service
- ROI scenarios by product or service
- Time to revenue scenarios
- Typical project timeframe by solution
- Go-to-market costs – eg website, marketing promotion, sales costs
- From the above it should be possible to generate both a profitability forecast and a revenue forecast
Value proposition development
Why would a customer buy this and how can we convince them?
- What is the critical business issue addressed by this product or service?
- How complete a fit is it to a customer’s critical business issue (and therefore what else might need to be positioned around it to make the fit 100%?)
- What buying motives apply – how will different roles within the customer perceive value?
- What type of buyer is likely to be attracted in terms of maturity – visionary or risk averse?
- What is the value to the client over time versus the cost to the client over time? What ROI could a customer expect?
- What related pull through products or services could a customer buy?
- How can this story be communicated succinctly to potential customers?
- What proof of success can customers be offered?
Sales Portfolio Management
How are we going to sell this?
- What pricing options and flexibility should be offered for the product or service?
- Identify integration opportunities between products or services
- What is the length of sales cycle by product or service?
- What are the timeframe and key milestones of a go-to-market plan?
What do we need to do to make it happen?
- Who is going to be responsible for business managing the plan?
- What organisational structure will be required for executing the plan?
- Are any additional business processes required to support the sales and implementation of this product or service?
FREE! Create your own Go-to-Market Plan
If you’ve found this helpful, you might like to download our free 13 page PowerPoint presentation “Go-to-Market Planning” describing in more detail how you can create your own Go-to-Market Plan.
To access our free downloads area, please register.
Of course, Sales Success and More would be happy to work with you to help you create a Go-to-Market plan for your products or services. We’ve worked with many companies to help them create effective Go-to-Market plans. To find out more, contact us.
If you’re interested in how this could help you, or feel I may be able to help you with some of the challenges you’re facing, please get in touch for an informal discussion.
There’s no commitment, we’ll just discuss your situation to see if working together might be a good fit.
Call me on +357 99 860725, or contact me.
PS: Here’s the link again to the new article Kickstart Sales and Marketing Planning.