Delivering Growth: GTM Planning Guide

I’ve learned how to build effective plans collaboratively - techniques that can help get buy in and critical mistakes to avoid. Read about them in a new, free guide.

Stuart Frederich-Smith
May 28, 2024
May 30, 2024
Delivering Growth: GTM Planning Guide

I’ll admit it, I’m something of a planning nerd. When I was growing up, games were often planning: organizing toy soldiers and action figures for epic wars across the living room and later planning global domination in Civilization. I’ve carried this planning interest (obsession?) across much of my adult life as well. From planning my wedding to vacations, I just like to be prepared.

Planning isn’t about laying out every detail step by step. It’s about being prepared to make the most of a future opportunity by understanding the possible. Those vacation plans don’t lay out a moment by moment agenda. They help me build a deep mental model of the cities I’m visiting so that I can improvise and adapt fluidly. Planning is about being prepared when you arrive.

Planning is a core part of my work life as well. Typically in the form of leading go-to-market and departmental planning. The blank slate of each coming year is a new chance to experiment. To improve. To be smarter and more efficient. More importantly, planning is a chance to bring the team together to reflect on the current health of the business and think creatively about the future. We spend so much of our time focused on the daily grind of execution that it is easy to forget what it is all building towards. Planning helps everybody re-center that vision and flex a different set of mental muscles.

Over my career I’ve refined my point of view on planning priorities and how to build effective plans collaboratively. I’ve learned a few things along the way: techniques that can help get buy in and critical mistakes to avoid. Together with my colleague Yuri, I’ve attempted to distill these years of planning learning into a slim volume on go-to-market planning called Delivering Growth.

We break planning down into four phases and walks through each stage in detail. From initial research through exploration, refinement and activation, we cover the major activities at each stage and how to avoid the common pitfalls that result in misalignment and plan abandonment.

Cross-departmental dysfunction is often a reflection of poor planning coordination. Sales and Marketing, I’m looking at us. If sales doesn’t trust that marketing understands the reality in the field, they might attempt to ignore or undercut marketing campaigns. And if marketing doesn’t spend time deeply learning sales reality, campaigns will struggle to break through.

Team alignment is the bedrock of effective planning and we introduce the Common Goals framework to help create bonds between each go-to-market team that connect directly to big picture corporate goals. Common Goals help everybody understand how campaigns and initiatives support the business and see the ways in which their work ladders up.

I hope you find the guide helpful, and I would love to hear your planning best practices / lessons learned in the comments. Check there for a link to the guide as well.

Download the guide

Stuart Frederich-Smith

Stuart Frederich-Smith

Stuart Frederich Smith, CMO of TigerEye has built a history of leading great teams and launching impactful campaigns. With more than two decades of experience in marketing, product and operations, Stuart is a cross-disciplinary leader committed to collaborative execution. He holds a BA in Film, Television & Theatre from the University of Notre Dame and lives with his family in Portland, OR.