Leading a Movement

What's the alternative to legacy product marketing? How do you lead a change management movement?

Be Remarkable: A Purposeful Rebirth of GTM Strategy

By David H. Deans

In the evolving domain of B2B tech vendor sales and marketing, where technologies and solutions often appear to blend into a sea of sameness, the demand for differentiation and market development has never been greater.

We must transform our Go-to-Market (GTM) approach. While this is not a simple task, it's a worthwhile cause. Enterprise customers are bombarded with similar offerings, and now a new paradigm is emerging — one that challenges IT vendors to be bold, brave, and remarkable. It enables vendors to engage C-suite stakeholders.

The goal is simple, yet profound: don't just lead a tech Product category; choose to lead a marketplace Movement that resonates with the core human emotions that transcend mere sales transactions.

Marketplace of Sameness: The Urgent Need for Change

As the business technology sector continues to expand, the proliferation of products and services has led to an over-saturation of the market. This phenomenon has inadvertently given rise to what can be termed the "marketplace of unimaginative sameness."

It's a place where tech vendors struggle to stand out from their peer group, resorting to competing solely on product features, technical specifications, or the lowest price. However, in this sea of indistinct offerings, the talent and skills to create value differentiation become essential.

To break free from the monotony, GTM leaders and their organizations must dare to be truly remarkable.

The conventional strategies of incremental tech innovation and minor GTM tweaks are no longer sufficient to captivate the attention of discerning customers. Instead, vendors must lead a compelling change Movement, centered on customer value creation and desired business outcomes.

Become a Movement Champion: The Power of Purpose

Amid this challenge lies a transformation opportunity — to purposefully lead a Movement that resonates deeply with customers' emotions and aspirations. This is more than just a branding exercise; it's about aligning the vendor's purpose with the customers' commercial desires.

A meaningful and substantive Movement has the inherent power to create a shared sense of purpose and to inspire customer decision-makers and other key stakeholders to rally around a cause that transcends the transactional nature of procurement.

Leading a pervasive Movement involves a fundamental shift in the GTM mindset. Instead of focusing solely on products and services, tech vendors need to spotlight the values they stand for and the business outcome changes that buyers seek to catalyze.

This is a path that requires a clear articulation of the vendor's mission, vision, and the positive impact they intend to create. It's about inventing a Narrative that resonates with customers, sparking an emotional connection that goes beyond the confines of a sales pitch.

Ignite Emotions: The Catalyst for Remarkable Change

The crux of leading a transformational Movement lies in the ability to ignite and nurture positive human emotions. In an era where automation and digitization are altering traditional online interactions, the significance of human engagement is profound.

Enterprise customer decision-makers no longer perceive vendors as mere providers of solutions; they are seeking trusted advisors and informed business partners who understand their needs and aspirations on a much deeper level.

Emotions have the power to drive customer loyalty, advocacy, and even unsolicited evangelism. When tech vendors tap into the emotional motivation of their customers, they create a lasting experience that leaves an indelible mark.

Whether it's the excitement of transformative innovation, the reassurance of impeccable customer support, or the empowerment that comes from enabling business leaders to thrive, these emotions become the bedrock upon which a unique Movement is built.

How to Attain Remarkable GTM Transformation

The journey from being a legacy Product leader to a Movement leader requires a strategic approach that encompasses various facets of the GTM organization's operations.

Here are key steps to embark on this transformation path:

Case Study: A Proven Path to Movement Leadership

We offer a compelling example of IT vendor organizations that jointly transitioned into a Movement leader -- the combination of IBM and Red Hat. Facing intense competition in the cloud computing sector, together they recognized the need to transcend technical jargon and open-source product features.

With our help, they embarked on a journey to lead a Movement focused on "Open Innovation."

They systematically redefined their purpose, aligning it with the aspirations of customers striving for eCommerce growth and digital transformation. The narrative centered on the idea that open technology should be an enabler of substantive progress.

Through the creation of Thought Leadership content, interactive workshops, and community-building initiatives, they fostered an ecosystem where customer senior decision-makers felt supported and truly moved by the inspirational goals and objectives.

And, they’ve published a book about a story of reinvention.

The emotional resonance created by their vision fueled the combined tech vendor rebirth. Customers who engaged with their Movement reported a shift in their mindset -- across the customer IT organization and Lines of Business.

Some felt empowered to embrace innovation, and confidently navigate market disruption created by cloud computing and artificial intelligence.

Call to Action: Embrace the Change, Be Remarkable

In a competitive landscape marred by product sameness and copycat vendor GTM strategies, the shift to be Bold, Brave, and Remarkable is imperative. The leading vendor GTM organizations that become market-making Movement champions will reap the rewards.

As vendors embark on this journey, they have the opportunity to excel and grow. Who will rise to the occasion? The answer lies with those who dare to be different, those who choose to be pioneers, and those who aspire to true greatness.

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