Why You Should Have A Unified GTM Framework

Manish Katyan

Discover the importance of a unified Go-to-Market (GTM) framework for seamless customer journeys and sustainable revenue growth. Learn how to align marketing, sales, and customer success teams to drive efficiency and collaboration.

June 8, 2024

GTM Peeps…Are you running an end-to-end customer journey framework?

I don’t mean, are you tracking Net Revenue Retention (NRR), but instead, can you honestly say that your customer lifecycle is aligned across:

  1. Definitions
  2. People
  3. Messaging
  4. Processes
  5. Data

I recently polled a group of 500 GTM professionals, and only 8 (EIGHT!!!) companies came back saying they have a centralized operation that runs across the complete customer lifecycle.

This is a stark indication of how fragmented the GTM (Go-to-Market) landscape remains.

Perhaps I polled the wrong people, but my money is on the fact that this isn’t happening because our growth-at-all-costs approach has created an obsession with acquisition.

If you’re doing $10M+ in recurring revenue, how much time this past year has your GTM org spent on lead scoring, prospecting lists, sales methodology training, forecast meetings, closed-lost reviews, and comp plans, all of which were focused on acquisition?

Now compare that to how much time was spent on account health, customer impact reviews, expansion methodology, white space campaigns, feature requests, and comp plans aligned to churn or NRR.

How much of your revenue growth plan relies on hiring more SDRs and Sales Reps versus bringing on quota-carrying Account Managers?

We spend more time on acquisition than compound revenue with our customer base because the rewards, frameworks, processes, and technology are far more focused on acquisition.

The thing is, the revenue flywheel spins at a constant pace when acquisition, retention, and expansion all contribute.

The good news is that you can start building your customer bowtie framework now.

It’s very much the same practice as your sales process.

The difference is that you’re bringing all your GTM practices together under one framework, not just the acquisition piece (or assuming expansion runs the same process as acquisition).

You can start by defining your Customer Journey stages (Winning by Design has the best materials on this framework).

Your Customer Journey framework should begin with:

  1. Description of each stage that is in the context of your business model
  2. Entry criteria
  3. Exit criteria
  4. GTM Roles that support the stage
  5. Relevant Customer Touchpoints
  6. The data fields (ideally auto-generated) aligned to the above definitions

Once you have the above, you can start setting up aligned processes, methodologies, and data capture supporting this framework.

Why a Unified GTM Framework Matters

A unified GTM framework is crucial for several reasons.

It ensures that all teams are aligned towards common goals and objectives, creating a seamless experience for the customer.

When sales, marketing, and customer success teams work in silos, it often leads to miscommunication, inefficiencies, and a disjointed customer experience.

A unified framework, on the other hand, fosters collaboration and ensures that every team member is working towards the same goal: driving sustainable revenue growth.

The Cost of a Fragmented GTM Approach

Operating in silos not only hampers the customer experience but also affects the bottom line.

When teams are not aligned, it leads to wasted resources, missed opportunities, and ultimately, lost revenue.

For example, if the marketing team is focused on generating leads without understanding the needs of the sales team, it can result in low-quality leads that do not convert.

Similarly, if the sales team is focused on closing deals without considering the customer success team’s ability to deliver on promises, it can lead to churn and negative customer experiences.

Building a Customer Bowtie Framework

To build a customer bowtie framework, start by defining the stages of your customer journey. Each stage should have clear entry and exit criteria, roles and responsibilities, and relevant customer touchpoints. The stages could include:

  1. Target Market: Potential companies that are a good fit for your product.
  2. Demand Creation: Companies showing a desire to solve the problem your solution addresses.
  3. Demand Capture: Hand-raisers showing intent to buy (meetings scheduled, demo or pricing requested, MQLs).
  4. Buyer Readiness: Engaged customers evaluating your solution to purchase (SQLs, Product Trial).
  5. Sales Pipeline: Customers working with your GTM team to buy your solution.
  6. First Impact: Customers who have experienced the core value of your solution for the first time (“aha” moment).
  7. Recurring Impact: Customers who regularly experience the core value of your product.
  8. Customer Retention: Customers who have renewed their contract with you.
  9. Account Expansion: Customers who have purchased additional components of your solution.

Implementing the Framework

Once you have defined the stages, you can start implementing processes, methodologies, and data capture mechanisms that support each stage.

This involves:

  1. Aligning Processes: Ensure that processes across teams are aligned and support the customer journey stages. For example, the marketing team should focus on generating high-quality leads that meet the entry criteria for the demand capture stage.
  2. Implementing Methodologies: Use methodologies that support each stage of the customer journey. For example, use account-based marketing (ABM) for demand creation and customer success management (CSM) for customer retention.
  3. Capturing Data: Use data capture mechanisms to track customer interactions and progress through the stages. This could involve using a CRM system to track customer interactions and generate data fields aligned to the customer journey stages.

Benefits of a Unified GTM Framework

A unified GTM framework offers several benefits:

  1. Improved Customer Experience: By aligning processes and teams, you can create a seamless and positive experience for customers.
  2. Increased Efficiency: By eliminating silos and aligning teams, you can reduce inefficiencies and ensure that resources are used effectively.
  3. Better Data Insights: By capturing data across the customer journey, you can gain valuable insights into customer behavior and make data-driven decisions.
  4. Sustainable Revenue Growth: By focusing on the entire customer lifecycle, you can drive sustainable revenue growth through acquisition, retention, and expansion.

Overcoming Challenges

Implementing a unified GTM framework is not without its challenges.

It requires a cultural shift and a commitment to collaboration and alignment. Some common challenges include:

  1. Resistance to Change: Teams may resist changes to their processes and ways of working. It is important to communicate the benefits of a unified framework and involve teams in the implementation process.
  2. Data Silos: Integrating data across teams and systems can be challenging. Use a platform like RevAmp, which integrates with your existing tech stack, to consolidate data and provide end-to-end visibility.
  3. Lack of Alignment: Ensuring that all teams are aligned towards common goals and objectives can be difficult. Use clear definitions, processes, and data capture mechanisms to ensure alignment.

When to Start Building a Unified GTM Framework

A unified GTM framework should ideally be introduced as early as possible in a company’s development, especially once the company begins to scale beyond initial customer acquisition phases and looks towards sustainable growth.

For businesses hitting or exceeding the $10M mark in recurring revenue, the need for a cohesive strategy becomes critical to manage and optimize the end-to-end customer lifecycle effectively.

Early implementation allows you to establish a strong foundation, ensuring that as the business grows, all teams across sales, marketing, and customer success are aligned with common objectives, definitions, and processes.

Starting early also builds a culture of collaboration and customer-centricity from the outset, making it easier to adapt and refine the GTM framework as the company evolves and the market demands shift.

Enhancing Sales, Marketing, and Customer Success Alignment

A unified GTM framework helps create integration across all customer-facing teams.

By defining clear stages in the customer journey — each with specific entry and exit criteria, supported by designated GTM roles and touchpoints — organizations can develop a cohesive strategy that enhances collaboration.

This alignment is crucial for identifying and capitalizing on cross-sell and upsell opportunities.

Such a unified GTM framework is enabled by RevAmp’s ability to provide end-to-end visibility and actionable data-driven insights across an entire GTM operation and helps you be more strategic about deploying resources towards areas with the highest growth potential.

Moving Beyond Acquisition to Retention and Expansion

Using a platform like RevAmp, which integrates with your existing tech stack, allows for the collection, analysis, and action on data across the entire customer lifecycle.

With RevAmp’s automated monitoring and observability system, CROs, Sales and RevOps can gain real-time insights into customer health, engagement levels, and potential expansion opportunities.

This helps you create targeted, data-driven strategies for retention and expansion, moving beyond traditional acquisition-focused metrics.

The platform’s emphasis on actionable insights and benchmarking against industry standards ensures your optimization efforts are grounded in concrete data.

Integrating Siloed Data for a Unified Strategy

RevAmp is designed to streamline the integration of data across various platforms, addressing one of the primary challenges faced by RevOps professionals: siloed data.

By consolidating insights from sales, marketing, customer success, and other tools into a single view, RevAmp enables organizations to align around a unified GTM strategy.

This integration capability means that GTM insights come from data spanning marketing, sales and customer service, so decisions can drive revenue growth from acquisition through retention and expansion.

Identifying and Acting on Opportunities for Process Optimization

RevAmp provides RevOps with precision testing and monitoring features that highlight inefficiencies and opportunities for process optimization within the GTM strategy.

By providing real-time insights and benchmarks against industry standards, RevAmp allows RevOps teams to identify areas where processes can be streamlined or adjusted for better alignment and efficiency.

This proactive approach to identifying and addressing process gaps helps the GTM strategy stay aligned and optimized for maximum impact across all stages of the customer journey

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