Marketing Strategy vs Go-to-Market Strategy

In business, there’s all kinds of strategies (what is a strategy is a whole another topic) one can hear about.

Strategies that most relate to the work I do are Marketing Strategy and Go-to-Market Strategy. What they are, how they differ and relate to each other is not always clear.

That said, let me try to provide a “short and sweet” clarification on these two.

What is a Marketing Strategy?

A marketing strategy is a plan for promoting and selling a product or service. It outlines how and where a company will communicate the value of its offering to potential customers and persuade them to buy.

A marketing strategy should take into account elements such as:

  • the target audience (to whom we want to talk to)
  • messaging (what we are saying to them)
  • channels (where/how we are talking to them)

When creating a marketing strategy, the most important thing is to research and understand your target audience, their needs and preferences. The best way to do this is to talk and interview your (potential) customers. Only having a proper understanding of your target audience you are you able to craft the best resonating message(s) through the right channels (where you reach your target audience the most cost-effective way).

What is a Go-to-Market Strategy?

Also known as a GTM strategy, is a plan for introducing a new product or service to the market. It outlines how a business will make its offering available to customers and capture market share.

A go-to-market strategy should take into account elements such as:

  • positioning (how we want to be perceived in relation to our competition)
  • distribution (how we deliver our product/service to customers)
  • pricing

When creating a GTM strategy, the most important thing is to understand the competitive landscape you’re in and how you could/should differ from the competition.

Additionally, you need to identify the most effective channels for distributing your product/service and find the best price point (which often is the highest price you can ask for that does not cause customers to choose any other option due to the pricing).


As said, a marketing strategy focus on how to position and promote products and services to customers, while go-to-market strategy focus on how to get products and services to them. Both strategies should be aligned and work together to bring a product or service to market successfully.

You should have metrics that you use to evaluate and analyze the effectiveness of these strategies. The strategies should not be “set an forget”, but evaluated regularly and adjusted as needed. Which metrics are the most relevant depend on the business, it’s maturity/lifecycle, business type, overall goals etc. However, most often there’s metrics related to customer acquisition, sales performance, and customer satisfaction that one should use.


Marketing strategy and go-to-market strategy are two essential strategies that businesses must understand and have in place to promote and sell their products and services effectively.

In my opinion, it all boils down to a business understanding what they want to be (and why) and to whom and then understanding “the whom” (target audience) as well as possible. After that, things fall into place much easier.