Evolving Commercial Strategy from Go-to-Market to Go-To-Customer
One of the biggest barriers to the growth of technology companies is that their culture and way of thinking are so heavily product-focused, it creates tremendous cognitive bias preventing their organizations to develop an authentic customer experience-driven business model.
The Business Problem
It’s clear a growing gap exists between the business strategy and the selling system that supports it. Aware of this trend, CEOs are developing business strategies focused on better understanding their customers’ problems and creating a rich portfolio of products and services that can be combined in a variety of ways to add value. However, companies are also reporting disappointing results as they “go to market” with their new business strategies.
To get there, executives are modernizing their selling system by following a Go-To-Customer approach. That means businesses that wish to protect their margins will create selling systems to communicate value to targeted executives and develop a new set of principles to drive the operational plan. The new Four P’s of commercial growth (problem, pattern, path, proof) lay a common foundation to allow different functional groups to find better ways to support each other toward a common goal.
As technology increasingly shifts to subscription-based business models, in order to develop a thriving profitable business vendors must ensure:
- The stickiness of the experience for users to ensure renewals
- Employees within client accounts increasingly adopt the technology for how they do their job
- The overall platform drive enough value to warrant more subscriptions and / or higher consumption
- The communication of the value of the service is self-evident enough it spreads across the client’s enterprise
To accomplish these objectives and make the economic benefit of the platform a reality for the client organization, technology vendors need to become significantly more aware of the entire digital transformation experience their customers are going through.
However, because technology companies are so hard-wired to think about their products and find the best ways to “go to market”, they are unable to see how the economy has reset itself to reward businesses who focus on creating a successful experience for customers deploying and using their technology to change how they work.
How Sales & Marketing is Evolving
The primary purpose of sales and marketing spending is to drive revenue growth. Over the past ten years, technology firms have seen a steady decline in the effectiveness of sales and marketing spending.
In order to reverse this trend, technology firms must firm become aware of their cognitive bias that puts their products at the center of the universe, assumes there is a steady market demand for them, and they must prescribe the right activities to get that demand to flow their way.
In reality, they need to be able to clearly understand:
- The business ecosystem their ideal customers operate within
- The scope of the business problem their technology enables its clients to address
- All of the stakeholders (each of whom can be subscribers or drivers of consumption) involved in that scope
- The business impact to the client entity when that problem is addressed
- The full economic value their company can activate for its clients
This is the work required to develop a commercial process tuned to adding value to customers at every point in their decision-making lifecycle and designing the right programs that produce measurable results.
Buyers are more demanding, informed, value-sensitive, and have more choices available to them than ever before. These realities — accelerated by a tight global economy — are driving commoditization in all B2B industries where buying decisions are increasingly shifting away from product differentiation to a greater focus on costs and benefits.
“Going to market” is built on the premise that demand already exists, and we need to respond to it. On the other hand, the premise of “Go-to-customer” is acting and co-creating demand with our customers, based on what they are trying to achieve. In other words, our company’s exist to serve customers, by problem-solving with them.
GO TO MARKET LOOKS LIKE:
- Passive efforts to find “buyers”
- Respond to demand based on who engages
- Tell me what to do and we will help you
- Reactive to how customers already think and define the need
- Nouns: What will you sell us?
GO TO CUSTOMER LOOKS LIKE:
- Action-driven based on problems to solve
- Create demand based on possibilities and vision
- Make it happen to bring together the right ingredients
- Proactive based on the forward-lean of customers
- Verbs: What can we do to solve your challenge?
Go-to-customer is a focused product, marketing, and sales strategy that drives product usage, measures satisfaction, ensures renewals, and grows from within the customer base. It’s a net-new approach to being highly relevant with every customer at every point in time and scaling customer intimacy. It puts the relationship first, removes the ability to have irrelevant conversations, and removes the ability to build bad products.
Go To Customer
To find more about Go-To-Customer, visit www.commercialratio.com