Map your best route to market
The route to success in a new market can often seem unclear and cluttered.
A structured and rational go-to-market strategy allows you to succeed in a market entry or rejuvination situation by offering appropriate products to selected customer segments, through the right channels, priced carefully and positioned to out-perform against competitors' weaknesses.
We don't hear very much about market entry failures - they tend not to be publicised, and quickly forgotten, for obvious reasons. But they can be instructive:
French retailer Carrefour jump-started Singapore's hypermarket business in 1997, but had to close its two outlets there 15 years later in 2012. It was a perfect storm of not targeting any market segment with sufficient focus, lack of clear positioning, and the wrong pricing policy. The European brand and product range appealed to expats, but they were disappointed by the poor service. Low prices appealed to local consumers, but the premium locations and lack of scale meant most could never shop there.
Siemens tried to enter one high-tech manufacturing equipment market segment in India relying on a JV with a Japanese company which fielded a national sales force of four people, and importing the machinery and spares from Germany. Sales did not materialise and the business quickly stagnated.
Such mistakes can and should be avoided, and many millions of dollars saved, by investing up-front in some cost-effective go-to-market research.
Realising it had to re-enter the market differently, Siemens conducted go-to-market research that told them prices were too high due to the long supply chain and over-reliance on the brand's 'quality' image, and field service coverage was sorely lacking compared with competitors. Added to those fundamental problems, the JV lacked focus as its main business was in fact components, not capital equipment. Better late than never.
GGM's approach to go-to-market strategy
Basing critical go-to-market decisions on accurate market data and reliable insights often makes the difference between success and failure.
GGM's go-to-market strategy approach uses in-country research to inform a logical hierarchy of decisions, starting with a regulatory review, market sizing and forecasting to select target segments, followed by customer insight in selected areas, competitor benchmarking and a value chain assessment.
The output is a concise strategy map with clear direction on:
- Targeting segments with the most potential
- Establishing distribution to reach those customers
- Defining the product offer
- Pricing appropriately
- Positioning the offer competitively
- Identifying risks and key success factors