Go-To-Market (GTM) strategy is basically how you plan to show your product to the world. You define your early customers, markets and segments you want to target when you launch your new product or service.

There is a misconception that a GTM strategy is a fancy name for a business plan. To make it clear, a GTM strategy comes under the umbrella of a business plan. GTM strategy only focuses on how the product or service will reach the end customer.

Apurva Anand, Cofounder of Forbidden Foods shared his experience and insights on how he launched products in 3 different categories, in 3 different markets. And gave some actionables to help you boost your prep for the launch!

Before we begin, lets define what is meant by a premium product.

Premium products are not synonymous to luxury products.

They are products with premium quality, packaging, pricing and targeted to premium customers help companies derive premium profits.

A study showed most people resonate premium products with better quality, better functionality and unique offering. Only a few related higher price with premium products.

To design the right GTM strategy for premium brands, deciding the consumption occasion, finding the push/pull strategy and choosing the right 'route to market' (RTM) are the 3 keys to make your product successful.

How did Paper Boat decide their Consumption Occasion?

Knowing when your consumers buy the product and what they use it for, is crucial for your GTM strategy.

Simply stated, consumption occasion defines When, Where and How you want to take your product out in the market.

When do you want to launch your premium product?  Where do you want to launch? What is the best location to target? How do you want to distribute? What is the channel of distribution for your premium product?

Paper Boat launched their premium gifting range in various premium markets. They looked at consumption occasion from a micro perspective. On observing a customer who ordered a large quantity of those gifting boxes for Diwali, the team decided to change their approach.

They shifted to a macro perspective of defining their when, where and how.
For Paper Boat, Diwali was seen to be the right occasion for these gift packs. They moved from multiple markets to only North Indian bulk buying channels as people preferred to buy the gift packs in large quantities.

Lesson- Make best use of macro consumption occasions for realising the best results

How did Mobikwik discover it’s Push/Pull Strategy?

As a payment wallet app, one has to convince 2 users.

  1. The merchant
  2. The customer

During the time of demonetisation, Mobikwik was following a pull strategy. Spending all it’s time and money on the end consumer. While the end consumer was interested in what Mobikwik was offering, the merchant was not.

On realising this, they shifted all their focus, offering and schemes to merchants. The team switched to follow a push strategy. Educating and directing all their schemes towards merchants.

This shift in strategy resulted in a 400% growth in QR code-based transactions in a period of just 1 month.

The sweet spot is when you find the right balance of applying both the push and pull strategy.

For Mobikwik, a push strategy resulted in skyrocketing their transactions. They focused on uplifting their partners (merchants) more.

A pull strategy is when you focus on marketing, which requires more investment than a push strategy.

When you don’t have deep pockets, follow a push strategy. Focus your time, effort and money on your partners.

Lesson- Make your primary customers your sellers and advocates

How smartwater and Monster Energy choose their ‘Route to Market’?

smartwater and Monster are the premium drink brands by The Coca Cola Company.

One major difference between mass products and premium is the consumption pattern and occasion.

Mass products are bought and consumed faster compared to premium products. For premium products to stick and grow on the consumer, it is important for them to stay in the market for longer.

The usual cash and carry distribution strategy is not applicable for premium products. Because the distributors want their goods to be sold faster. For smartwater and Monster, finding distributors who are able to extend credit in the market and keep these products on the shelves for longer time was needed for a successful launch.

Lesson- Choose your route to market that allows you to stretch your distributor’s investments

What will make your GTM strategy a success?

Here is a list of action points that’ll help you stand out when you launch your Premium consumer product in any market.

  1. Do a thorough pricing research. Know the ticket size of per unit sale
  2. Make your product stand out by having great merchandising
  3. Have larger amount of stocks in the store for visibility
  4. Ensure the products have a longer shelf life
  5. Promote your product well using different channels

Hope you enjoyed reading this post!

Check out Apurva’s blog Navigating the Icarus Paradox for Long Tail Business Strategy

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