A CEO’s Take on What GTM Transformation Looks Like — Part 2

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March 13, 2023

4 mins read

Gabe on GTM Feature

A CEO’s Take on What GTM Transformation Looks Like — Part 2

In my last post, I talked about what go-to-market (GTM) means, which we define at Demandbase as all the strategies and activities involved in generating revenue. It involves marketing, sales, account retention, and growth. Then I talked about why GTM needs to be transformed to adapt to today’s digital B2B landscape and escalating complexity. 

In this post, as promised, we’ll look at what a transformed GTM looks like.

1. It’s account-based…first.

This is stating the obvious, but I’ll do so to make a point. Business-to-business (B2B) is about companies marketing and selling to other companies, not individual consumers. And within those companies you need to sway entire groups of decision-makers and influencers — the buying committee. Depending on your source, you’ll hear anywhere from 7 – 20 people can be involved. So it makes no sense to focus your GTM around attracting, engaging, and measuring activity on individual leads. 

Don’t get me wrong. There’s still a place for leads in B2B GTM, as you’re sure to attract some inbound. But leads shouldn’t be your focus because they’re only valuable if they’re tied to an account you want to target and if they’re on the buying committee. 

The more efficient way to go to market is to start by targeting accounts — the ones you want and who are most likely to buy from you. Engage the buying committee members at those accounts. And measure engagement and progress at the account level. Are you reaching the accounts you want? Are they engaging with you? Are they moving through the funnel, converting to pipeline, and closed-won deals. That’s what matters. Not loads of random lead activity.

2. Marketing and sales agree on account tiers and resourcing.

At a minimum, sales and marketing need to agree on which accounts to target. But in a transformed GTM, these teams also align on account tiers and how much resource to allocate to each, based on their strategic value. For example, Tier 1 accounts get 1:1 messaging, high-value offers and invitations, executive engagement, and so forth. At Demandbase, we have three tiers of target accounts that we engage 1:1, 1:few, and 1:many, respectively — followed by the rest of our ICP (tier 4) and the balance of our TAM (tier 5).  

3. Data silos are a thing of the past.

Sales and marketing alignment is a must in B2B, where both teams are touching members of the buying committee throughout the entire buyer journey. Remember the analogy of the soccer game from the previous post? For sales and marketing to play as one team, they need a shared view of their accounts. In addition to the basic account data in CRM, they all need to see engagement activity, website behavior, intent data, technographics, and more. More data equals more insights. As long as they’re all seeing the same thing. 

4. Marketing and sales work toward the same goals.

In a transformed GTM, sales and marketing share a common set of goals that are aligned with overall business objectives. I recommend focusing on pipeline generation, bookings, and revenue rather than individual metrics such as website traffic or lead volume, or even the popular metric of marketing-sourced/influenced pipeline. Focusing on the latter, as many marketing teams do, fosters division and competition that gets in the way of team play. 

5. It’s built on a modern GTM tech stack.

None of the above is possible without a modern, data-driven tech stack that streamlines processes and provides rich insights. That means using tools such as marketing automation, CRM, an ABM / GTM platform, sales engagement, chat bots, and analytics platforms. And truly transformed GTM teams not only choose the right technology, they fully integrate it and know how to make it sing. 

6. Marketing gives as much attention to customers as to new logos.

Finally, in a transformed GTM, your marketing team no longer puts customers in the rearview mirror when a deal closes. You play an active role in the customer lifecycle pre- and post sale, focusing equally on them, while also courting new logos to drive business acquisition.

Transformed marketers treat upselling and cross-sales as a funnel, using the same tactics you use to drive new business. For example, using advertising, content and email marketing, gifting, and so forth based on website activity, engagement, journey stage, and intent signals. To rely on relationship building by the account team alone is to miss significant opportunities.

What’s more, in a transformed GTM, marketing also owns responsibility for case studies, customer reference programs, community, and advocacy. These customer marketing functions not only build loyalty and retention, the validation they provide feeds back into the traditional funnel, driving new business acquisition. This type of customer validation is more important than ever, as companies are having to justify every dollar spent.

There you have it.

A transformed GTM is account-based, data-driven, and tech optimized, with all revenue-generating teams working in concert to drive revenue throughout the ongoing customer lifecycle. 

Sound too good to be true? We can help you get there. Just reach out to me at GabeGTM@demandbase.com or visit demandbase.com.

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