How do CMOs lead a lean go-to-market?

“Waste is stupid stuff, the things we do that no one, and certainly not a customer, is asking us to do… efficiency and effectiveness are not the same thing. The first is about doing the work right, the second is about doing the right work. Nearly all waste comes from not doing the right work.”

What a Unicorn Knows

This excerpt from Matthew May‘s and Pablo Dominguez‘s new book What A Unicorn Knows hits home:

B2B tech marketing is about connecting to customers. And it’s incumbent on marketing leaders to use every shortcut available to create those connections. Unfortunately, many are induced to wasteful behavior by old habits, poor targeting, and martech vendors selling a “pipe[line] dream.”

In my experience working at a unicorn, as well as advising dozens of other unicorns and tech startups, here are the most common wasteful behaviors I’ve witnessed:

  • Marketing and Sales are targeting too broad of a market, having failed to define their true obtainable market.
  • Marketing and Sales are prioritizing “cold tactics” over working their partners and personal networks for “warm intros.”
  • Marketing and Sales are running largely independent and overlapping GTM initiatives, instead of orchestrating a lean and unified campaign.
  • Marketing and Sales are overinvested in acquiring new logo dollars when they have available to them a wealth of “cheaper” customer expansion dollars that they’re leaving untouched.

How do you stop the waste? By evaluating every GTM activity between campaign start and cash, asking for each: “is this value-added, non-value-added, or waste?” For most, the answer to these questions probably isn’t “fish for inbound leads.” By eliminating waste, you should have left the shortest possible route to cash.

Thanks for the sharp thinking, Matt and Pablo! And congrats on the launch of your book.

Jared Brickman

Jared Brickman is Senior Director of the Marketing Center of Excellence at leading software investor Insight Partners, where he advises CMOs of the firm’s 500+ portfolio companies on how to go-to-market. Learn More →

Speaking & Interviews

Invite Jared to speak on this and more at your event, on your show, in your publication, etc.

Create a website or blog at

%d bloggers like this: