People-First GTM Playbook: Transform Your B2B Strategy

People-First GTM Playbook: Transform Your B2B Strategy

Nick Bennett 27 min

Introduction - Welcome to "People-first GTM Playbook” - Get Ready for a Transformation!

Hey there!

And welcome to the ”People-first GTM Playbook.”

I'm really excited to dig into the world of B2B success with you because we're about to tackle some of the biggest challenges faced by businesses today. 

We will explore why the Company-first GTM model just doesn't cut it anymore and, more importantly, how the new People-First GTM model can turn things around for you.

Here's what you can expect:

1. We'll explore why the old "Company-first" GTM model falls short and why transitioning to a "People-first" approach is the way to go. In the next 5 days, you'll master the strategies, tools, and tactics to strengthen the B2B approach that’ll help you create a robust customer base, build a memorable brand presence, and have the potential to scale your business to new heights.

2. We'll delve into the issue of chasing quantity over quality in lead generation and how to generate high-quality leads through the power of partner-led growth. By the end of this course, your business will be empowered to build more meaningful connections, foster strong relationships, and increase lead quality.

3. You'll discover how to combat the problem of brand spam with meaningful interactions and nurturing strong customer relationships. The result? You'll see a dramatic shift in how content-led, event-led, and product-led growth can drive your brand forward and build a thriving customer base.

4. We'll discuss why capturing existing demand isn't enough and why actively creating demand and forming relationships and partnerships is key. The reward for this transformation? A strategy that can create, capture, and convert demand, ensuring your business's continued growth and success.

5. We'll wrap up by emphasizing the value of relationship-centric approaches and how to create a word-of-mouth flywheel for your brand and product. By the end of this journey, you'll be well-equipped to tap into the power of word-of-mouth marketing and achieve remarkable business success through the strength of meaningful connections.

Stay tuned and get ready for an exciting learning experience!


— Mark & Nick!

Lesson 1: Ouch…! Your company-first GTM is costing you thousands in lost revenue!

Hey there!

Welcome to Lesson 1 of People-first GTM Playbook!

I'm super excited, and I hope you are too…Let's jump right into the thick of things, shall we?

The biggest reason why most B2B businesses struggle to scale beyond $500K-$1M is because they're stuck in the outdated Company-first Go-To-Market (GTM) model.

And here's why countless businesses are still tethered to the Company-first model, like it's an old anchor in a sea of change:

  1. Businesses often prioritize immediate results and quick wins, overlooking the long-term potential.
  2. Past success can create inertia, making it difficult for companies to adapt. Sometimes, a history of success with the Company-first model can blind businesses to the need for change.
  3. The pressure to conform to industry norms and mimic competitors can lead to a Company-first approach. However, it's important to remember that what works for one company may not work for another.
  4. Insufficient understanding of the evolving market can result in sticking to what's familiar. Companies must stay connected with their target market to adapt effectively.
  5. Limited access to resources, such as budget constraints, can force businesses to stick with familiar, but outdated, strategies. Understanding how to do more with less is crucial for growth
  6. Fear of the unknown can hold businesses back from embracing change. This fear can be a significant barrier to innovation and exploring new strategies. Overcoming this fear is essential to remain competitive.

But what happens when a business remains committed to the Company-first GTM model?

The consequences are clear.

Customer relationships remain limited and distant dreams of meaningful interactions fade into the background. Lead quality often takes a hit as the focus stays solely on brand-centric strategies. Stagnation becomes the norm, and the business struggles to break free from the plateau, missing out on the full potential of the market. Opportunities go unnoticed, and valuable partnerships and customer-centric growth remain untapped.

But here's the good news!

You can easily recognize these signs of a Company-first GTM approach within your organization and take steps to pave a new path toward success.

  • Your marketing revolves around promoting your company rather than addressing customer needs and concerns.
  • You're experiencing high customer churn rates and low customer retention.
  • You're not leveraging data and insights to create personalized and meaningful interactions with your audience.
  • Your customer interactions are infrequent and focused solely on sales.
  • You are valuing conversions more than the happiness of your customers.
  • Your emails are considered spam.
  • You are prioritizing lead quantity over lead quality.
  • Your outbound marketing dominates while inbound insights are neglected.
  • Your communication lacks a human touch and is overly formal
  • Your marketing materials are packed with jargon and industry buzzwords
  • You spend more time talking about your products and services than listening to your customers' needs
  • Your sales pitches focus more on product features than how they address your customers' pain points.

Feeling like any of these points hit home for you? Well, that's a sign—it's time to shake things up and take your GTM strategy to the next level. And guess what? You're in for a treat today! Because I’m going to share the exact blueprint you need to do this over the next 5 days, starting today.

The Progressive Solution & Strategy Your B2B Business Needs is ‘People-First GTM Approach”

Here's why this shift is crucial in today's B2B world:

  1. Being customer-centric sets you apart as it's a strategy many overlook, giving you a competitive advantage.
  2. It hones your approach, targeting customers' precise needs rather than generic strategies.
  3. You become agile, adapting swiftly to market changes and customer demands.
  4. Focus on what matters, preventing wastage of time and resources.
  5. Satisfied customers become your most effective marketing channel.
  6. Transitioning ahead of competitors positions you as an industry leader.
  7. Better understanding of customers' needs helps you navigate risks proactively.
  8. Customers' feedback fuels innovation, leading to groundbreaking solutions.
  9. Streamlined, customer-focused journeys enhance satisfaction and loyalty.

And if you're curious about how this 'People-First GTM Approach' will upgrade your business game and heck, maybe even your Monday morning routine, let me spill the beans and take you on a tour of benefits that read like a wish list for success.

It's like having a magic wand for your B2B business, minus the rabbits and top hats.

  • Customer Loyalty
  • Increased Sales
  • Higher Conversion Rates
  • Reduced Churn
  • Enhanced Brand Image
  • Efficient Marketing
  • Improved Client Retention
  • Cost Savings
  • Stronger Partnerships

Who knew that B2B business success could also sound this delightful and exciting?

But there’s a catch!

Even though it’s possible to achieve this kind of noteworthy success in B2B landscape, most businesses don’t know how to transition to this approach successfully.

And so they end up making these avoidable but costly mistakes.

  • Dismissing Data Insights: Ignoring data is akin to sailing through a storm without a compass.
  • Failing to Humanize Brand: Treating your brand like a faceless corporation is like wearing a disguise at a family reunion.
  • Ignoring Market Trends: Disregarding market shifts is like driving a car with your eyes closed.
  • Exaggerated Adaptation: Changing everything overnight is like rearranging furniture in the dark—you might trip over something.
  • Neglecting Employee Training: Skipping this step is like sending a chef into the kitchen without recipes or ingredients.
  • Forgetting Client Individuality: Treating all clients as identical twins results in missed opportunities and puzzled faces.

But don’t worry, you’re not going to be one of these businesses.

I’m going to tell you exactly how you can avoid these common but costly mistakes to make sure your transition from Company First Approach to People-First Approach goes smoother than a jazz musician playing on a silk carpet!

As much as I'd love to continue our chat, I just realised that it’s time to wrap up today’s email.

But before I let you off the hook today, quick heads up for tomorrow's scoop!

We’re tackling a classic B2B puzzle: lead quantity or lead quality?

Ever been there? I get it.

In the next lesson, we spill the beans by diving into the nitty-gritty to help you figure out which side takes the cake in the B2B world. Exciting, right?

Don’t miss out!

Lesson 2: 8 strategies to unlock premium B2B leads at zero cost!

Welcome to Lesson 2 of the People-first GTM Playbook!

In Lesson 1, we uncovered why the majority of B2B businesses struggle to grow, and we shed light on the outdated Company-first GTM model. We also introduced the 'People-First GTM Approach' as the game-changing solution to this challenge.

Today, we're zooming in on an issue closely tied to our People-First GTM Approach—lead quantity vs. lead quality. While it may seem like an unrelated topic, trust me, it's a vital puzzle piece in the journey toward redefining B2B success.

7 out of 10 B2B businesses sales pipeline is clogged with unqualified and uninterested leads.

Result? Higher customer acquisition cost, Lower Conversion Rate.

The reason people are not interested in buying your B2B product or service is because your sales efforts are focused on quantity rather than quality, which leads to a flood of irrelevant leads in your pipeline.

Here's why B2B businesses make this mistake:

  • Overemphasis on hitting lead quotas, regardless of lead quality.
  • Misguided belief that more leads automatically equal more sales.
  • Pressure to demonstrate high lead volume as a success metric.
  • Lack of a well-defined lead scoring system.
  • Fear of missing potential opportunities by being too selective.
  • Difficulty in distinguishing between qualified and unqualified leads.
  • Failure to prioritize lead nurturing and relationship building over immediate sales.

Ever wondered where this chase for quantity over quality can take your B2B sales pipeline?

  1. Decreased ROI: While the number of leads might increase, they're less likely to convert, resulting in a lower return on investment.
  2. Time and Resource Drain: Focusing on the wrong leads consumes time and resources that could be spent on more promising prospects.
  3. Diminished Brand Reputation: A flood of irrelevant leads could dilute your brand's value, impacting trust and reputation in the market.
  4. Missed Opportunities: Chasing quantity sometimes means missing out on potential opportunities hiding within a smaller, but more relevant, lead pool.
  5. Inflated Sales Pipeline: A crowded pipeline can mislead about the actual state of sales, causing forecasting errors and mismanagement.
  6. Longer Sales Cycle: Sorting through a mountain of irrelevant leads elongates the sales cycle, affecting revenue generation.

While it's no surprise that more leads seem like a recipe for success, it’s time to challenge that notion. Because,

"Volume in leads is vanity, quality in leads is sanity—choose wisely for your B2B prosperity."

Imagine streamlining your sales process with precision-targeted leads, those genuinely excited about what you offer. It’s like running a specialized store where every customer who walks in is genuinely interested in your products. These are the kind of leads we're talking about.

And it all starts with understanding your Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) and focusing your efforts on the right fit accounts and buyers.

When you focus your Ideal Customer Profile (ICP), instead of being too broad or generic - you ensure that every interaction you have with potential customers is meaningful, your messaging resonates with them and your solution addresses their specific pain points.

The benefits?

  • Shorter Sales Cycles: Reduce sales cycles by an average of 30%, speeding up lead-to-conversion time.
  • Higher Conversion Rates: Achieve a 25% increase in converting leads to customers.
  • Improved ROI: Witness an average of 20% reduction in acquisition costs, enhancing overall cost efficiency.
  • Stronger Customer Relationships: Build enduring connections with a 40% boost in retention.
  • Resource Optimization: Save 15% by redirecting efforts from unqualified leads.
  • Increased Customer Lifetime Value: Elevate customer value by 35% for sustained revenue.
  • Lower Customer Acquisition Cost: Achieve a 25% decrease in acquisition expenses.
  • Accurate Forecasting: Improve sales forecast precision by 30%.
  • Enhanced Brand Reputation: Boost market credibility by 20%.

It's the difference between casting a wide net, hoping for any fish to bite and a precise, strategic approach that not only saves time and resources but also transforms your B2B business into a lead-generating powerhouse.

Now, let's dive into the practical part – how to define your Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) and distinguish them from generic and broad leads?

Follow these quick Step-by-Step guide to target your audience effectively.

1. Customer Data Analysis: Examine your existing customer data. Identify patterns and common traits among your most satisfied customers.

2. Feedback and Surveys: Collect feedback to understand customer needs and pain points. This insight will help you refine your ICP.

3. Market Research: Study your market thoroughly to identify trends, demands, and gaps your product or service can fill.

4. Segmentation: Divide your audience into smaller segments based on common characteristics, such as industry, company size, job roles, and goals.

5. Buyer Personas: Create detailed buyer personas to humanize your ICP, giving you a better understanding of their motivations, goals, and challenges.

6. Align Sales and Marketing: Ensure your sales and marketing teams are on the same page about the ICP. Collaboration is key.

7. Regular Review: Continuously update and refine your ICP as your business evolves and your customer base grows.

With these steps, you'll be able to create a precise Ideal Customer Profile that sets the stage for more targeted, successful B2B lead generation.

By having a well-defined Ideal Customer Profile (ICP), you're already a step closer to optimizing your lead generation efforts for quality. Now, let's take it a step further.

And that next step is - Partner-Led Growth; where you team up with trusted partners to expand your customer reach and boost your brand's credibility. Think of this like making friends in the right places, where those friends happily introduce you to their friends who could become your customers.

8 Trustworthy Methods to Master Partner-Led Growth

1) Influencers: Collaborate with influencers in your industry who can authentically endorse your product or service to their engaged audience.

For example, picture you are a B2B SaaS company providing project management tools. Partnering with an influential project management consultant known for guiding businesses through efficient workflows, they can endorse your tool in webinars or write-ups. Their reputation adds credibility, showcasing your software as a valuable solution for B2B project management needs.

2) Creators: Work with content creators who can showcase your offerings in a creative and engaging way, helping you reach new potential customers.

For example - Suppose you are a B2B software company specializes in CRM solutions. Collaborating with a content creator who produces in-depth tutorials on optimizing CRM systems, they can create content showcasing how your CRM tool streamlines processes. This content, whether in video or blog form, resonates with businesses seeking effective CRM solutions.

3) Developers: Partner with software developers or tech experts who can integrate your solutions seamlessly, making it easier for customers to engage with your product.

For example, Imagine you offer cloud-based storage solutions for businesses. Partnering with a cloud infrastructure provider or a platform like Zapier for easy integrations enables businesses to seamlessly incorporate your storage solution into their existing workflows. This collaboration simplifies data management for B2B users, making your solution an attractive addition.

4) Sellers: Team up with seasoned sales professionals who understand the B2B landscape and can bring in quality leads through their network.

For example, as a B2B marketing automation platform, collaborate with experienced marketing consultants who specialize in helping businesses optimize their marketing strategies. They can recommend your platform to their clients, emphasizing how it simplifies lead generation, nurturing, and analytics. Their endorsement positions your platform as a valuable asset for businesses aiming to enhance their marketing efforts.

5) Employers: Building relationships with other companies or employers who share similar target audiences can lead to mutually beneficial partnerships.

For example, suppose you offer B2B HR software which focuses on employee engagement. Partnering with HR consultancy firms that guide businesses in implementing HR technology ensures that your software is recommended to companies seeking effective employee engagement solutions. The collaboration benefits both parties and provides valuable solutions to B2B clients.

6) Customers: Your existing satisfied customers can be your best advocates, referring you to other businesses that fit your ICP.

For example, If you are a B2B cybersecurity firm, encourage satisfied clients to refer your services to other businesses in their professional network. Their positive experiences and recommendations serve as trustworthy referrals for businesses in need of robust cybersecurity solutions, building a network of businesses concerned about their digital security.

7) Sponsors: Find sponsors who can support your initiatives, helping you reach a wider audience and generating high-quality leads.

For example, if your B2B company offers advanced analytics solutions, securing sponsorships with industry-specific conferences focused on data analytics and business intelligence offers opportunities to showcase your product. This not only enhances your visibility within the analytics community but also positions your solution as a key player in advancing data-driven decision-making for businesses.

8) Members: Engage with members of industry associations or networks where your ICP is likely to be present.

For example, imagine you are a B2B marketing professional, being part of a B2B marketing professionals' network. You propose a collaborative project with other B2B members to organize a webinar series discussing the latest marketing trends. This collaborative effort not only enhances your B2B brand visibility but also strengthens relationships with fellow B2B marketers who see you as a valuable collaborator.

But there is a giant roadblock stopping you from achieving this Partner-Led Growth.

Be honest and tell me,

And that’s where most B2B businesses fail.

Are your outreach efforts meeting with radio silence?

Is your ad spend producing the kind of results you expected?

Do your social media presence feel like a one-sided conversation?

Are your emails getting low or no response?

Are you struggling to retain customers?

If you answered “Yes” to any of these questions, your business might be grappling with the same roadblock that plagues many businesses in their GTM strategy.

You see, having a good lead generation strategy is not enough for B2B success, you also need a good communication strategy to execute it.

And that’s exactly what we are going to talk about in tomorrow’s email.

7 Content-led growth strategies, 8 Event-led growth strategies and 5 Product-led growth strategies that’ll teach you how to,

  • Initiate meaningful interactions with your prospects.
  • Start attracting customers on autopilot
  • Build and establish your authority and credibility
  • Turn prospects into customers and customers into superfans

It’s time to say NO to drain leads, strain resources, and hinder revenue.

You'll love Lesson 3! 

Lesson 3: Master your B2B outreach game in just 10 minutes a day!

Welcome to Lesson 3 of the People-first GTM Playbook!

In Lesson 2, we explored the challenge of turning leads into premium clients with B2B Company-first GTM Approach. And discussed the power of an Ideal Customer Profile and Partner-led Growth strategies.

Today we’ll build on that by focusing on the power of Meaningful Communication Strategies, that plays an important part in People-First GTM Approach.

The biggest issue with B2B customer communication is that businesses flood their potential clients with too much irrelevant or repetitive information.

It's like trying to quench your thirst with a firehose – too much, too fast.

And here’s what happens when they do that.

  • They confuse clients, making it hard for them to grasp the real value.
  • Clients grow frustrated and tune out, missing valuable insights.
  • Trust erodes as clients feel like just another number on the list.
  • Messages get lost in the sea of emails, making follow-ups impossible.
  • It becomes a wasted effort, with potential clients unsubscribing.
  • The brand loses its distinct voice in the crowd of generic messages.
  • Businesses fail to make a meaningful connection, missing out on potential partnerships.

But I don’t blame you. The common misconception out there is,

More communication = More attention = More sales

But the thing is, one relevant, targeted and meaningful communication will drive you 5X more sales than 100 irrelevant, random and “let’s throw some spaghetti and see what stick to the wall” kind of sales pitches. The reason why businesses still follow this quantity-over-quality communication strategy is because,

  1. They believe volume increases the odds of a response.
  2. It seems efficient and cost-effective.
  3. They think they need to "stay top of mind."
  4. They fear missing out on potential leads.
  5. It's the strategy they've always used.
  6. They haven't realized the power of meaningful interactions yet.

You can easily identify if your B2B communication strategy is clogged with brand spam or not.

Look at your open and response rates – if they're low, that's a red flag. High unsubscribe numbers? Yep, you might be overloading your customers. Take a peek at your email content – if it sounds like a sales pitch, it's time for a change. And don't forget to listen to your clients – their feedback is the best indicator.

Basically your existing B2B GTM approach is acting as an repellent, It's like using bug spray on your business.

If you want to keep your customers close without breaking a sweat, here's the key: Less selling, more talking.

That's precisely what People-First GTM is all about. People aren't looking for yet another 'Buy from me' salesperson; they want a 'Let me help you' friend. So, don't just throw your B2B offerings at businesses – be that friend who offers tailored solutions to address their unique challenges.

Here are 7 tips for initiating meaningful interactions with your audience.

  • Ditch the robotic scripts and engage like a human, not a chatbot.
  • Personalize your communication to make customers feel heard and valued.
  • Focus on delivering valuable content, not bombarding with frequent messages.
  • Tailor your interactions to each customer's unique needs and challenges.
  • Instead of making assumptions, ask questions to understand their pain points better.
  • Speak in plain language, not corporate jargon that makes customers zone out.
  • Nurture relationships over time, not just in one interaction.

Now that we've learned how to engage in meaningful conversations, let's explore how to put these principles into action.

People-First GTM offers three key avenues for building strong relationships and driving growth: Content-led, Event-led, and Product-led strategies.

Let's dive in and discover how each of these approaches can reshape your B2B success story.

1. Content-Led Growth:

Content-led growth is about providing valuable and informative content to your audience, which not only educates but also inspires action. It's your go-to strategy for building trust and credibility.

  • Video Delight: Create 10 informative video pieces this quarter to explain complex concepts or showcase your products and services. For example, Produce short tutorial videos demonstrating key product features, making complex concepts easily understandable for your audience.
  • Offer eBooks and Reports: Develop 3 in-depth eBooks and reports this year to position yourself as an industry expert. For example, craft an in-depth industry report showcasing your expertise, providing actionable insights that position your brand as a thought leader.
  • Pillar Pages: Build 2 comprehensive pillar pages in the next six months that serve as hubs of information on specific topics. For example, create pillar pages addressing industry trends, consolidating valuable information and resources for your audience to reference.
  • Podcast Power: Launch a podcast series with at least 10 episodes, discussing industry trends and engaging with a wider audience. For example, host engaging interviews with industry experts, offering valuable insights and fostering a connection with your audience.
  • Newsletter Wisdom: Send out bi-weekly newsletters packed with useful insights, tips, and updates. For example, curate a newsletter series that features exclusive tips and industry news, keeping your audience informed and engaged.
  • Bundle for Value: Package together related content pieces each quarter for more substantial value. For example, bundle together guides, templates and case studies, providing a comprehensive resource kit for your audience.
  • Course Creations: Develop and release two online courses this year to educate your audience on important subjects. For example, launch an online course series covering industry best practices, empowering your audience with actionable knowledge.

This content-led approach helps your audience learn, stay engaged and encourages them to take action based on the valuable insights you offer.

2. Event-Led Growth:

Event-led growth centers on creating live, interactive experiences for your audience. It's about fostering participation, networking and delivering valuable content in real-time.

  • Webinar Wonders: Host 4 webinars this year on trending industry topics with engaging Q&A sessions. For example, you can conduct a series of webinars featuring guest speakers and real-world case studies to provide valuable insights and foster audience interaction.
  • Training Takeoff: Provide monthly training sessions and workshops that allow participants to learn and grow. For example monthly hands-on training sessions covering practical skills and industry best practices, empowering participants with actionable knowledge.
  • Conference Connections: Organize a conference in the next six months where networking and knowledge-sharing take the spotlight. For example, host a conference that focuses on collaborative problem-solving, providing a platform for industry experts and attendees to share valuable insights.
  • VIP Events: Create two exclusive VIP events annually to reward your most loyal customers and build strong relationships. For example, Host VIP events featuring exclusive product previews and networking opportunities, strengthening connections with your top customers.
  • Award Ceremonies: Recognize outstanding achievements within your community with an annual award ceremony. For example, you can host an annual award ceremony celebrating client successes, fostering a sense of community and achievement.
  • Onboarding Excellence: Implement a revamped onboarding experience this quarter for new clients, ensuring a strong start. For example, start creating personalized welcome kits and dedicated support, to create a positive first impression for new customers.
  • Meetup Magic: Host monthly meetups where industry professionals can exchange ideas and insights, creating a vibrant community for networking and collaboration.
  • Product Launch Excitement: Use 1-2 live events to launch every new product, to build excitement and engagement.

Event-led growth allows you to connect with your audience in real-time, build stronger relationships, and provide a platform for interactive learning and collaboration.

3. Product-Led Growth:

Product-led growth focuses on creating products and services that are easy to access, use, and purchase, emphasizing a frictionless experience. The more customers use, the more value they get.

  • Simplified Sign-Up: Streamline the sign-up process to make it quick and easy for potential customers. Aim for a 20% reduction in sign-up time. For example, enhance the sign-up form by eliminating unnecessary fields and implementing a one-click registration option.
  • Smooth Onboarding Flows: Design onboarding experiences that guide customers seamlessly. Target a 15% decrease in onboarding time. For example, create interactive onboarding tutorials and tooltips for a smoother user journey, ensuring a hassle-free experience from the start.
  • Jobs-to-Be-Done Approach: Identify and implement at least 5 improvements this quarter based on your customers feedback to align your offerings with their needs. For example, you can utilize customer feedback to enhance product features, such as introducing a user-friendly dashboard or streamlining key processes.
  • Frictionless Purchasing: Make purchasing options simple, proposing solutions rather than pressuring. Rewrite your marketing materials to focus on prioritizing solutions. Make the payment gateways simple and hassle free. Give clear and simple buying instructions. Aim for a 10% increase in completed purchases. For example, you can start with writing persuasive yet transparent sales copy, ensuring customers understand the value proposition without feeling pressured to buy.
  • Unlock the Flywheel: Design your product to generate momentum, where increased usage leads to more value. Set a goal for a 25% increase in user engagement. For example, start with implementing features that encourage users to explore advanced functionalities gradually, unlocking additional value with each interaction.

Product-led growth transforms your offerings into a user-friendly, valuable experience. It allows customers to explore, understand, and see the benefits quickly, leading to higher satisfaction and engagement.

Alright, so far, you've learned everything you need to master the art of capturing the demand. But here's the deal: capturing demand is just step one.

And you don’t want your business to be solely depend on capturing the demand. It leads to missed opportunities and stagnant growth. A big NO!

But what if you could flip the script? And create, capture and convert demand like a PRO? So you don’t have to wait idly for opportunities or struggle with stagnant growth again.

That’s what we are going to talk in Lesson 4. Discover 18 actionable strategies, explore 3 growth channels and unlock the ultimate demand creation blueprint.

It's not about waiting for leads anymore; it's about making people crave what you've got. Get ready for a gear shift, folks!

Lesson 4: Achieve unstoppable B2B growth in 5 minutes with this “Demand Creation Strategy”!

Welcome to Lesson 4 of People-first GTM Playbook!

In Lesson 3, we tackled the problem of information overload in B2B communication, highlighting the need for meaningful connections.

And also discussed the three avenues of People-first GTM offers. Content-led, Event-led and Product-led growth.

Today we’ll talk about taking the reins and ruling the B2B industry.

The biggest problem with Company-first GTM is, it is solely focused on capturing the demand, where you're basically waiting for customers to come to you.

It's like waiting for a bus at a stop—hoping your customers swing by.

But what if you could be the cool new food truck everyone's lining up for? Instead of waiting, you're cooking up the sizzle. The best part? People start craving what you're offering.

And that’s what People-first GTM is about!

It teaches you how to capture, create and convert the demand effectively and effortlessly. Where you don’t go looking for people but people start lining up for you, for your offers!

6 Reasons why should aim to create, capture and convert demand.

  1. Full Customer Journey: When you create, capture, and convert demand, you're like a good friend to your customers - there from the first wave to the high-fives when they stick around. It's about the whole journey, not just the start or finish.
  2. Ready for Anything: With this approach, you're like a chameleon in the market. You can quickly adjust to any change, making your business flexible and ready for whatever comes its way.
  3. Consistent Cashflow: A holistic approach ensures a reliable, year-round cash flow instead of hoping for that one big season. No more financial rollercoasters!
  4. Spreading the Risk: By diversifying your customer base, you're like a smart investor who doesn't put all their money in one stock. It's about reducing risks and spreading the wealth.
  5. Happy Customers: You're not just making one-time sales; you're ensuring your customers remain satisfied, engaged and eager to return for more. That's customer loyalty gold!
  6. Steady Growth: Creating, capturing, and converting demand sets you on a path for steady, sustainable growth. It's like watching a tree grow. It may not happen overnight, but it's constant and keeps getting bigger and stronger.

Okay, so we've talked about the “What” and the “Why”, now let’s talk about the “How”.

How do we Create, Capture and Convert demand?

By embracing a People-first GTM that's all about fostering partnerships and collaborative relationships.

But why Partnerships?

  • According to a study by Nielsen, businesses that engage in strategic partnerships experience a 30% increase in brand reach compared to those operating independently.
  • Collaborations open doors to markets and segments you couldn't tap into independently.
  • Achieve growth without increasing payroll costs.
  • Partnering brings in varied skills and knowledge, enriching your offerings.
  • Partnering adds credibility to your brand.
  • Partnerships speed up growth by sharing resources, connections, and mutual benefits.

Cool, now that we’ve understood why partnerships are the real deal…Let’s dig into the real meat of the matter.

It’s time to explore the three People-first GTM Channels - Community-led, Member-led, and Customer-led Growth.

These channels are your ultimate B2B toolkit for partnership-led growth - To create robust demand, capture valuable leads, and convert prospects into loyal customers.

Let’s jump in!

1) Community-led Growth: Building Relationships that Drive Engagement

Community-led growth is all about harnessing the power of communities to drive engagement and build meaningful relationships. By participating in relevant spaces and adding value, your brand can become a trusted voice, not just another faceless company.

  • Listen and Engage: Start by actively listening and participating in online communities where your target audience congregates. Offer unique insights and value, all while speaking from a personal, human perspective, not as a faceless brand. Here’s the action plan for you - Identify two prominent online communities within your niche, such as industry-specific forums or LinkedIn groups. Actively participate in these communities by posting insightful comments on existing threads and initiating discussions. Aim to join at least one relevant conversation daily.
  • Add Value: Always strive to add value to the conversation. Share your expertise and insights, and aim to be genuinely helpful. This builds your reputation as a valuable contributor. Here’s the action plan for you - Compile a resource guide or toolkit relevant to your industry, offering valuable insights or templates. Share this resource within the communities, highlighting its usefulness. Encourage discussions around the content and offer to address any questions or concerns.
  • Form Relationships: Begin forming relationships with people within these communities. Build trust by consistently engaging in conversations and offering assistance when needed. Here’s the action plan for you - Identify key influencers or active participants in the communities who align with your brand values. Reach out to these individuals for one-on-one discussions. Seek opportunities for collaboration or mutually beneficial engagements, such as co-hosting a webinar or contributing to each other's content.
  • Foster Engagement: Partner with individuals and brands within these communities to increase engagement. Share valuable content, ideas, and educational materials that resonate with your audience. Here’s the action plan for you - Create a content calendar for community-specific content, including social media posts, infographics or video content. Share this calendar with the community, seeking feedback and suggestions. Actively collaborate with community members on content creation, ensuring it resonates with their interests.
  • Be Authentic: Maintain an authentic voice and personality throughout your interactions. People connect with real, relatable individuals, not automated corporate speak. Here’s the action plan for you - Share behind-the-scenes glimpses of your team's work, events, or even a day in the life of a team member. Regularly post authentic content that humanizes your brand. Encourage team members to actively participate in discussions, responding in a personalized and approachable manner.
  • Rituals and Habits: Establish routines for engaging in the right places, with the right offerings. Collaborate with various brands and individuals to accelerate relationship-building. Create a model to measure and predict engagement and lead generation. Here’s the action plan for you - Develop a monthly community spotlight feature, showcasing outstanding contributions or achievements. Introduce this feature within the community, seeking nominations or suggestions. Implement a consistent schedule for these spotlights, creating anticipation and encouraging ongoing engagement.

Community-led growth is a powerful strategy that can lead to followers, engagement, and eventually, successful leads. It's all about being genuine, adding value, and forming strong connections in the communities where your audience hangs out.

2) Member-led Growth : Building a Thriving Community of Advocates

Member-led growth revolves around creating and nurturing a dedicated community of advocates. These individuals champion your brand, offering valuable insights and feedback. In return, they receive personalized experiences, tailored benefits, and a sense of belonging.

  • Create an Owned Community: Start by establishing the first version of your brand's membership community. Outline a list of benefits that entice users to sign up and engage. Here’s the action plan - Launch a dedicated members-only platform, such as a private forum or app, exclusively for brand advocates. Develop the community with clearly outlined benefits, including early access to product updates, exclusive content and direct interactions with key team members.
  • Offer Free Membership: Attract new members by offering a free membership account. This initial step can significantly boost your community's growth. Here’s the action plan - Introduce a free tier of membership with enticing benefits to encourage initial sign-ups. Also, make sure to clearly communicate the value of the free membership, such as access to a limited set of premium content or a monthly exclusive event. Promptly welcome new members with a personalized onboarding experience.
  • Recurring Events: Build recurring events into the membership experience to keep members engaged and invested in your brand. Here’s the action plan - Establish a regular schedule for member-exclusive webinars, roundtable discussions, or Q&A sessions. Plan and promote a series of recurring events within the community. Encourage active participation and feedback during these sessions, fostering a sense of community engagement.
  • Personalization: Begin using first-party data and engagement signals to personalize each member's experience. Tailored experiences make members feel valued. Here’s the action plan - Utilize data analytics to identify individual member preferences and engagement patterns. Implement personalized content recommendations, exclusive offers, or targeted communications based on each member's activity within the community. Regularly seek feedback to refine personalization strategies.
  • Content and Learning: Develop a range of content and learning resources to enrich the member experience. Offering valuable insights and education keeps members engaged and informed. Here’s the action plan - Develop a monthly or quarterly structured learning program with modules, workshops, or masterclasses. Roll out a series of content and learning resources within the community, designed to enhance members' skills or knowledge in relevant areas. Encourage ongoing discussions and knowledge-sharing.
  • Programs and Perks: Implement customer programs, perks and special access to reward and incentivise your community members. Here’s the action plan - Launch a tiered loyalty program with escalating perks based on members' engagement levels. Introduce a loyalty framework that recognizes and rewards members for their contributions, such as exclusive access to beta releases, personalized merchandise or featured spotlights within the community.

Member-led growth is all about nurturing a thriving community where members are not just customers but also advocates. By providing personalized experiences, valuable content, and exclusive benefits, you can create a loyal and engaged group of members who actively promote your brand.

3) Customer-led Growth : Empowering Advocates for Your Brand

Customer-led growth is centered around harnessing the power of your existing customers as advocates. It involves identifying engaged customers, partnering with them, and leveraging their stories and successes to drive growth.

  • Identify Engaged Customers: Start by identifying your most engaged customers who are satisfied with your product or service. How to do it? Develop a Customer Engagement Score (CES) based on interaction metrics. Implement analytics tools like Mixpanel or Google Analytics to track user interactions. Calculate CES by quantifying metrics like product usage frequency, feature adoption, feedback submissions and community involvement. Customers scoring above a certain threshold (e.g. utilizing the product for over 20 hours per week or submitting feedback monthly) are considered highly engaged.
  • Customer Partnerships: Partner with these satisfied customers to share their stories, examples, and successes. Here’s the action plan - Create a Customer Advocacy Program to highlight success stories. Reach out to Top 100 highly engaged or repetitive customers a.k.a superfans. Offer them incentives (such as exclusive access, discounts, or recognition) who agree to share their success stories through testimonials, case studies or participating in promotional events.
  • Create Valuable Content: Develop content and educational materials that help other customers make the most of your product. Here’s the action plan - and curate a resource library. Compile success stories, customer-generated tipsand testimonials into educational content. Aim to produce a minimum of 10 downloadable guides, 5 video tutorials and conduct 3 interactive webinars within the next quarter. Ensure the content is diverse, catering to different customer needs and use cases, making it a go-to reference for users seeking to maximize the benefits of your product.
  • Customer Advisory Boards: Establish a customer advisory board to partner with customers for product innovation and audience activation. Here’s the action plan - This quarter, invite a select group of 10-15 highly engaged customers to an advisory board. Schedule monthly virtual meetings to discuss upcoming features, offer feedback on prototypes and suggest improvements based on their real-world needs.
  • Marketing Campaigns: Design marketing campaigns and offers that feature these satisfied customers and their success stories. Here’s the action plan - Send out a bi-monthly announcement through social media or newsletter for marketing campaign. Ask people who are comfortable sharing their success stories comfortably. Craft marketing campaigns featuring real customer experiences across various channels. Highlight success stories through social media shout-outs, youtube interviews and testimonials embedded in email newsletters, showcasing the benefits and outcomes achieved.
  • Incorporate Customer Input: Actively involve customers in shaping the future of your product, using their feedback to guide product development. Here’s the action plan - Take a meeting with your team and implement a user-friendly feedback platform within the product interface. If it’s the service you’re offering, you can use tools like CustomerGauge, InMoment or Typepform. Encourage customers to submit suggestions, report issues, and share ideas directly from their user dashboard. Regularly review and acknowledge submitted feedback, providing transparent updates on actions taken.

Customer-led growth empowers your customers to become advocates, sharing their positive experiences and contributing to your brand's success. It's a customer-centric approach that leverages the enthusiasm of your satisfied customers to drive growth and build lasting relationships.

Alright, it’s time to wrap up…but the excitement doesn’t stop here!

In Lesson 5, we're diving into something even bigger - how to create a word-of-mouth flywheel for your brand and product.

We’ll discuss the ultimate word-of-mouth blueprint where you’ll learn 8 actionable strategies you can start implementing right away.

Get ready to learn to implement a system where satisfied customers become your most powerful advocates, driving lower acquisition costs, trust, virality and lasting relationships.

Lesson 5: Do you want to generate more sales than you can handle for $0?

Welcome to the final lesson, Lesson 5 of the People-first GTM Playbook!

In Lesson 4, we delved into the art of creating, capturing, and converting demand, transforming your approach from waiting at the bus stop to becoming the irresistible food truck where customers come to you.

Our final lesson is all about taking this strategy to the next level, so you don't ever have to struggle to attract clients or scale your B2B business.

Pouring money into client acquisition is one thing, but creating a self-sustaining system where happy customers willingly bring others to your door is an entirely different league of B2B success.

But the reason they spend so much money on traditional lead generation is because,

B2B businesses are stuck in a transactional GTM model.

The limitations of such model and it’s impact on your business are far fetching!

  1. Lack of Genuine Connection: One of the primary drawbacks of a transactional GTM model is its focus on transactions, not relationships. This lack of genuine connection with your clients can result in missed opportunities for building lasting partnerships and fostering trust.
  2. Short-Term Gains, Long-Term Losses: Transactional models often prioritize short-term gains, like quick sales, over long-term success. This approach can lead to client churn, missed upsell opportunities, and ultimately, lower customer lifetime value.
  3. Limited Insights: Without a strong focus on relationships, businesses might miss valuable insights into their clients' evolving needs, pain points, and preferences. This lack of understanding can hinder tailored solutions and limit your competitiveness.
  4. High Acquisition Costs: Constantly chasing new clients due to high client turnover can be costly. When transactional models fail to nurture relationships, businesses often miss upsell and cross-sell opportunities that are essential for growth. Building relationships with existing clients often proves more cost-effective in the long run.

What’s the alternative then?

The answer lies in relationship-centric model.

It's like being at a backyard barbecue! Imagine not just handing out business cards, but actually striking up conversations, sharing stories and building a genuine connection over a burger and a cold drink.

When you prioritize transactional models, you’re choosing to be the hamster on the wheel, churning endlessly at lightening speed.

But when you embrace the relationship-centric model, you're choosing to be the powerhouse on the word-of-mouth flywheel, spinning purposefully at lightning speed.

And if you want your B2B business to thrive, word-of-mouth marketing is indispensable. It's all about creating a system where satisfied customers become your most powerful advocates, driving lower acquisition costs, trust, virality and lasting relationships.

The Ultimate Blueprint for Building a Dynamic Word-of-Mouth Flywheel For Your B2B Business

  • Deliver Exceptional Value: Start by offering top-notch products or services that genuinely help your customers. This sets the stage for positive word-of-mouth. Here’s the action plan for you - Curate a resource library with success stories, customer-generated tips, and testimonials. Develop 10 downloadable guides, 15-20 short video tutorials and 2 interactive webinars showcasing real user experiences in next 6 months.
  • Ask for Referrals: Don't be shy about asking satisfied customers to refer their friends, family, or colleagues. Personal recommendations carry weight. Streamline the referral process with a template or link for easy sharing. Utilize referral management tools like Refersion, Growsurf or ReferralCandy to automate and track the referral process.
  • Incentivize Referrals: Offer incentives to both the referrer and the new customer. It's a win-win situation that encourages more referrals. Here’s the action plan for you - Establish a structured referral program with tangible incentives in this quarter. Offer a 20% discount for the referrer and a 10% discount for the new customer for every successful referral. Set a goal of achieving 50 successful referrals in the next quarter.
  • Leverage Social Proof: Share customer success stories, reviews, and testimonials on your website and social media. It builds trust and encourages others to try your offerings. Utilize social proof tools like ProveSource or TrustPulse to display real-time notifications of recent customer activities, adding credibility and encouraging others to try your offerings.
  • Engage on Social Media: Be active on social platforms where your audience hangs out. Respond promptly to comments, share valuable content, and actively participate in industry-related discussions. Here’s the action plan for you - Aim to post thrice a week on 2 any social media platforms where your audience is the most active. Engage 15-30 mins everyday with them by responding to comments, DMS or hosting quick live sessions. Use social media management tools like Buffer or Hootsuite to schedule posts and monitor engagement effectively.
  • Create Shareable Content: Develop content that's not only informative but also shareable. Encourage your audience to spread the word by making it easy to share your posts, articles, or videos. Here’s the action plan for you - Implement a monthly content sharing strategy which includes pots like detailed guides, memes or exclusive giveaways. Add social sharing plugins on your website. Add relevant Call to action to all your posts or marketing campaigns. Use tools like ClickToTweet can make it easy for users to share specific content snippets.
  • Nurture Relationships: Actively invest in building and maintaining strong relationships with your customers. The closer you are to them, the more likely they are to recommend your brand. Here’s the action plan for you - Implement customer relationship management (CRM) tools like HubSpot or Salesforce to keep detailed records of interactions. Utilize personalized email campaigns and surveys to gather feedback, ensuring a customer-centric approach. Aim to schedule a personalized follow-up calls with highly engaged and repetitive customers bi-monthly.
  • Monitor and Optimize: Keep an eye on your word-of-mouth efforts. Track referrals, monitor social engagement, and gather feedback to continually improve your flywheel. Here’s the action plan for you - Establish monthly review sessions to analyze the performance of your word-of-mouth efforts. Utilize analytics tools like Google Analytics or social media insights to track referral traffic, social engagement, and customer interactions. Gather feedback through surveys or reviews and use the insights to continually optimize your word-of-mouth flywheel strategy.

By building a word-of-mouth flywheel, you're not just reducing acquisition costs; you're creating a loyal customer base that actively spreads the word about your brand, driving organic growth and trust in your products.

And there you have it, my friend!

You've nailed it!!

Finishing this People-first GTM Playbook guide is a milestone.

Now, you're armed with some seriously awesome B2B strategies.

But guess what?

The journey doesn’t end here.

Nick Bennett 27 min

People-First GTM Playbook: Transform Your B2B Strategy

Unlock B2B success with the People-First GTM Playbook. Learn strategies to build a customer-centric approach, create demand, and foster strong relationships.

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