Moving from Practice toward Science : Defining Go-To-Market model and setting it up to turn potential into profit
Firms are today struggling with setting up successful go-to-market models. Go-to-market (GMT)expenses are reported to be a considerable part of company spending, but in many cases withoutyielding enough return. This case study investigated the concept of go-to-market models and howcompanies successfully can set it up to turn potential into profit. Atea was struggling with setting up their go-to-market model for Midmarket in Stockholm for their Product/volume offering and their dilemma constituted a great opportunity for expanding the relative young field of GTM research.
The problem was approached using an abductive research strategy. The study moved back and forth between theory and empirical data gathered primarily by in-depth and semi-structured interviews with managers at high level in Atea. The nature of the GTM concept was thoroughly examined including its relation to other parts of the organization and the assumptions about underlying economics. Structure throughout the whole research process was achieved by thematization of the problem and methodological adherence.
Merging the empirical findings with existing theory resulted in the first holistic definition of model successfully connects the different components of the GTM-model with each other. Relevant theories are connected to the framework as aid for using the concept as a tool for analysis.
Our findings show that the GTM-model should be an extension of the marketing strategy and the overall business strategy. When setting up a GTM-model it is therefore crucial that the setup has its roots in the overall strategy of the company to ensure a setup that is consistent with the go-tomarketthat relates the concept to overall strategy and marketing strategy. Itcompany’s brand promise. The GTM-model itself is constructed from four main areas; GTM-strategy, segmentation, channel choices and systems and support. GTM-strategy concerns aligning the GTM setup with the overall firm and marketing strategies but also setting priorities based on the underlying economics of target clients as well as priorities based on market data of what are the driving factors of those underlying economics. The segmentation must all available data and should be based on variables of customer needs in terms of problems, buying behavior or desired customer experience. The channels have to reflect the potential of the client and a model has been developed for prioritizing channel choices. The channel choices also depend on the product or service the company is taking to the market. Finally the supporting functions need to have a lean set-up where focus is on cost efficiency while providing the core functions with the support they need. The support function should be responsible for tracking the data required to assess the underlying economics. The four distinct parts are closely integrated and changes in one part will have implications in the other parts.
For Atea a series of actions were developed to improve their performance and profitability of their GTM-model for their Midmarket in Stockholm. The findings of this case study are transferable to the other regions of Atea Sweden but also to other companies within the same industry. The generic concept definition of GTM model is transferable beyond this limit to include all complex business but further research has been suggested to validate these findings. The building blocks and relative importance of the four parts will vary from industry to industry, and from company to company, with regard to the unique capabilities of each specific case.
The model is the first holistic model of the GTM concept that puts the GTM-model in the context of the whole company and provides a definition to avoid concept confusion while being a practical framework to use for analysis. It will therefore be of help to both practitioners setting up successful GTM-models and to researcher of the field of GTM strategy and GTM models.
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