(If you tell a Sand Hill Road audience that your go-to-market strategy is, say, "Strategy #31 -- Launch Your SaaS on ProductHunt," or give a list that's 43 items long, you'll get laughed out of the room before you can pop open the lightly flavored seltzer they gave you.)
You can safely ignore this list until you figure out a real strategy, and once you do just hand this list over to your marketing manager in case they run out of ideas.
Should be noted that this is really from the perspective of B2B SAAS.
Sometime you need it fast :-)
LinkedIn, to stay with the example, is going to give you a certain set of tools. How you use those tools is going to depend on your strategy. What that strategy is is going to depend on goals.
If you haven't or can't articulate your goals, you have to start there. Once you know what exactly it is you are trying to achieve, you can evaluate different strategies on how to achieve them (here it helps to also have a good idea of timelines or other constraints too).
So you have a goal (say, double engagement* with mid-career engineers in the next 12 mo), and a strategy (direct communication with targeted individuals, tailored by demographic), you can evaluate a tactic (post LinkedIn adds) and understand how it fits into your strategy based on the tools they give you.
* or some other metric, better if less handwavy
A LinkedIn ad (or a Facebook ad, microsite, TikTok, Snapchat), targeted at a specific audience or audience subset, might be one tactic amongst many that you used to drive people toward achieving this goal. You would have different tactics for different parts of the funnel (i.e. an ebook for someone at the top, and a demo or webinar for someone at the bottom). You would then measure the success of these tactics to determine where to direct spend to achieve your goal.
Trying to get sign ups? Track landing page conversions, forms filled, optimise, rinse and repeat.
In point of fact tactics are more generally useful and can be employed in a number of different situations. They need to be in service of your objective and strategy but are where the rubber meets the road.
To me the distinction between strategy and tactic is exactly the opposite of a tomato/tomato-o distinction. They exist at different levels of abstraction.
On it's own, that's not important. What is important is that many companies, especially young ones, waste a bunch of time and/or do ineffective things precisely because they haven't made this distinction, and are thinking at the wrong level of abstraction for the problem they have (if they have even managed to frame it properly).
No, please don’t do that.
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